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ECONOMICS – FINANCE – WORLD NEWS – GREEK DEBT

Would Murdoch want to be new Greek finmin?

So about Greece… I’m sorry, but it’s one of those days. Finance minister Rapanos resigned yesterday due to health issues and prime minister Samaras announced that he will not be able to fly for two months due to his eye problem. What the… Rapanos may be replaced by Yiannis Stournaras, professor of economics at the University of Athens and one of those who hasn’t fled the country yet. Both the details and results of his health check are yet to be disclosed.

Newscorp is looking into splitting the company into separate entertainment and publishing divisions. What does this mean? Well, the legitimacy of the WSJ’s report on the story is up for discussion, as the journal is of course part of Newscorp. But Murdoch could stay in control of both parts, only mitigating the storm around the British newspaper units that were involved in the phone-hacking scandals, and not actually solving the problem that a demerger should presumably address (namely Murdoch owning everything). More importantly, a split would make it harder for the publishing division to find investors, despite its prime newspaper assets, because its growing at a much slower pace than the entertainment branch. Not really surprising, you’re comparing the WSJ and the Times to 20th Century Fox here… come on.

A new proposition from Brussels authored by the presidents of the Commission, Central Bank, Eurogroup and Council (mostly to set the stage for the summit later this week): In Dan Davies words [blatantly stolen from Twitter, yay for 140 characters]:

1. Pan-European single banking regulator – ie completely irrelevant to crisis, pure and simple power grab.

2. European deposit insurance & resolution schemes, backed by ESM – ie repurposing of existing fund, not in treaty. Nothing from ECB

3. “pooling of decision making on budgets” ie power grab

4. “issuance of common debt could be explored” – ie, jumping someone else’s train of ERF and Eurobills. No original work

5. “A full fiscal union” and what’s the most urgent issue about that? yup “it would need a central budget“.

6. “Towards an integrated economic policy framework” – equal parts sameold “stability and convergence” guff and power grab.

7. “Oh yeah, democratic legitimacy”. Insultingly brief 2 paragraph section, which just points you at Protocol 1 of TFEU.

(or read article)

In other European news, Cyprus has officially requested a bailout, the terms of which have not been finalized, but it’s like to be €8-10bn, and France is set to raise the minimum wage by 2% come July 1.

The woman in the news today is not Angela Merkel for a change, but Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg, who is now director of the company’s board, which so far had only been comprised of men. Well done Sheryl, girl power and all that.

At last, a chart and a reason why we shouldn’t be looking forward to September: according to a study by Luc Laeven and Fabian Valencia of the IMF, which relies on 147 cases over 41 years, September is the month of banking crisesread article

So long.

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