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ECONOMICS – FINANCE – WORLD NEWS – GREEK DEBT

From a meeting to a call to an email… oh Greece…

After the meeting of Europe’s finance ministers and the Greek government was cancelled and downgraded to a conference call due to lack of paperwork (what else is new?), Brussels is now waiting to receive a letter (this is like backward efficiency) from Greek conservative leader Antonis Samaras. In the letter, Samaras will presumably agree to the imposed austerity measures. It might well be supported by yesterday’s GDP data, showing that the Greek economy contracted by 7% in Q4 of 2011, 2% more than in Q3. read article

Just now via Zero Hedge: Samaras said changes in [austerity] policies “might be required” for implementation.

Pragmatic Capitalism says these GDP numbers are a clear sign that the eurozone crisis will get worse, because it leaves the contraction above what was expected and makes a deficit reduction very difficult. That might be pessimistic, but don’t forget that that it’s the Greece stats authority ELSTAT that brought us those numbers… they may well be wrong. read article

Meanwhile, Franz Fehrenbach, CEO of Bosch, has openly demanded Greece to leave the euro, get its affairs in order [by devaluing the Drachma] and stop being such a pain for Germany. And he is not alone: a survey of the German manager magazin shows that 57% of participants support a Greek exit.

Otherwise, British unemployment figures came out today, showing youth unemployment at 22.2% and jobless claims down by 14,000 [claims] in the the three months leading up to December [in comparison to the three months leading up to November]. Following the North-East, London has the second highest unemployment rate in England with 10%. read article

Maybe the ’employment-seeking’ could spend some time on financial literacy to avoid the embarrassingly poor performance of Baby Boomers. NYTimes’ Economix blog reports on a country ranking of numerical understanding of 51-56 year-olds. Overall win for The Netherlands and Germany. read article

The chart of the day is actually a chart from 2010. Yet, it hasn’t lost any of its significance: Here is the correlation between 5-year credit default swaps and the amount of men who still live with their parents in the age group 25-36 across Europe. Props to JP Morgan for spending time on important research like this. read article

So long.

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