Eurozone: Calm before the Storm Scheduled for September

The survival of Greece in the eurozone depends on the capability of their authorities to implement tough economic reforms. This warning that is actually referring to the circumstances of the country outlines a scenario that has no other solution. Besides that, the fiscal situation in Greece is worse than of Portugal, Spain or Ireland. The fact is that actually Greece has a solvency problem, while other countries have problems with liquidity problems.

perperzona decisionThere is usually supposed that the future of Greece within the euro depends on the willingness of the country to apply the austerity measures imposed by the ECB, EU and IMF. The fact is that none of these three institutions actually wants to see Greece out of the euro zone, since it would be the most expensive solution for Greece, but also for other countries. From that could be concluded that everything is in the hands of Greek government that must now give effect to those fundamental budgetary modifications and structural reforms, accepted in exchange, in exchange for financial aid to country. Besides that, Greek prime minister Antonis Samaras wants to get a two-year addition to the attainment of fiscal consolidation Greece has in fact raise 11.5 billion euros, through radical budget cuts and huge reforms. Germany has confirmed that will not take any decision before the publication of the report of the ECB, EU and IMF, scheduled for September. It should represent an evaluation of progress in the country, so it is in play for the payment of a further tranche of 31.5 billion euros. From that issue, Samaras hopes that the recent meetings with senior leaders of the EU can lower criticism of which Greece has recently been made the target. On the meeting with EU leaders he tried to persuade European leaders about the compliance and capability of the Greek Government to tribute its obligations to the creditors of the European Union and the International Monetary Fund and stay away from any rumor about a possible exit of the country from the eurozone.

On the other side, there are some confrontations of the Bundesbank and ECB. As the leader of the Bundesbank, Jens Weidmann is, so to say, the protector of the monetary sanctuary. The German central banker has returned to make a statement unexpected. This time it was about the indebted countries to which the ECB gives its support. In an interview given to magazine Spiegel two days ago, Weidmann explains that the acquiring of hat size of the debt by the European Central Bank can be addictive. “We shouldn’t underestimate the danger that central bank financing can become addictive like a drug” – he warned.

Since the arrival of the newest Bundesbank leader, a year and a half ago, that institution has continued to make their voices heard, by saying its “nein”, to the rest of the Europe. Weidmann is therefore presented in many media as the person with the strong decisions and usually called as “the man who will save the euro”. Opposing to debts, possibly one of the last irreducible to Eurobonds, he is against any further support to Greece as well as an action for the purchase of debt by the ECB. In early August, the ECB had expressed its compliance to take action, if necessary, resorting to exceptional measures against the crisis. They could go through the procurement of government debt on the market and may carry out transactions in the bond market of sufficient size to achieve its goal. That was also the conclusion of the ECB president, Mario Draghi who tried to convince the Bundesbank that it will not allow the returns to countries like Spain and Italy reach weak levels. However, Weidmann stated that in a democracy, there should be the parliaments and central banks to decide on such a pooling of risks and that was the point where the confrontation officially has begun. The discussion will be continued on September 6th about whether the ECB has a tool to be able to buy government bonds on the secondary market, or not.

Even though the month of August brought the heat to Europe, the authorities of the EU are preparing for, in financial sense, even hotter September. The fact is that between the recession in Europe, indecision and division among the leaders of the euro one, the circumstances in Spain and Italy, forced to borrow at very high rates, the recurrence of concerns over Greece, the thing is truly likely to explode. The ECB President Mario Draghi has tried to convince the markets about the irreversibility of the euro, claiming to be ready to do whatever it will be necessary to preserve the single currency. That has to a certain extent helped to lower tensions on the markets. The fact was that Draghi’s plan has a significant lack of details: timing, method, length and quantity of the intervention. The thing is that the head of the ECB has raised many hopes, but the risk is to create a big disappointment if the operation of the institution in Frankfurt had to be discarded, postponed or distorted due to resistance from the German. The other players, such as Portugal and Spain would also have a significant role in facilitating in saving the euro, but the whole thing is still between Greece on the one and Germany on the other side.

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