Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Greece & It's Effect On the EURO. RIOTS. Anti-Merkel PROTESTS. LIVE STREAMING.


Athens police fire tear gas in crackdown clashes at anti-Merkel protest (PHOTOS, VIDEO)

Published on Oct 8, 2012 by 
Angela Merkel, the German Chancellor, is set to arrive in Greece on Tuesday, where she will hold talks with conservative prime minister Antonis Samaras. A heavy security has been put in place for the German chancellor's six-hour visit, the first since the economic crisis made landfall in Greece in 2010, amid planned new anti-austerity protests. But victims of the huge spending cuts forced on Greece by the EU, IMF and European Central Bank also want a word with her. Al Jazeera's Barnaby Phillips reports from the Greek capital, Athens.

Forex Flash: ESM launched, attention turned to Greece – UBS (Barcelona) - The monthly meeting of Eurozone finance ministers ended with little fanfare. As expected, Europe's new bailout facility - the ESM - was formally launched. According to Gareth Berry, a Research Analyst at UBS, "Eventually the ESM will take over from the EFSF, however both facilities are scheduled to run in tandem for at least a year, providing a combined firepower of €700B."

In addition, the headlines on Greece sounded more accommodating than usual. Greece's finance minister emerged from the meeting noting that an extension to Greece's adjustment program is now on the table, although no agreement has yet been reached on this point. Even Eurogroup Chair Juncker conceded that he was impressed by the performance of the new Greek government and its willingness to push through reforms.

"Germany's Chancellor Merkel is due to meet Greece's Prime Minister Samaras in Athens to today, however we do not expect any announcement on whether Greece will receive its next aid tranche until the troika has finished its quarterly review." Berry adds. Policymakers are likely to command the headlines again today with an appearance by ECB President Draghi before an EU parliamentary committee. Bank of England Governor King is also due to reflect on the subject of inflation targeting during his speech this evening.

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Germany's Merkel arrives to protests in Greece

10:14AM EST October 9. 2012 - ATHENS -- Thousands of protesters greeted German Chancellor
Angela Merkel here Tuesday when she arrived to have a face-to-face meeting with Greece's president, who must cut the public payroll to qualify for European aid money and avoid national bankruptcy.
Tens of thousands of demonstrators marched on Syntagma square in spite of a
ban on gathering there and tried to push through barricades to voice anger at Merkel, whom they accuse of unfairly forcing Greece to slash government jobs and benefits to keep the European Union intact.
Some demonstrators threw stones and bottles. Police fired tear gas to hold them back, but violent flare-ups were isolated.
Merkel, who arrived for a five-hour visit at the invitation of Prime Minister Antonis Samaras, has made Germany one of the biggest contributors of bailout money to Greece. But she and other European leaders have demanded Greece cut back on overspending to receive the next bailout loan scheduled for next month.
"She knows she's not welcome here," said protester Leta Karayanni, 28. "I think Merkel came here (for the typical diplomatic visit) but also to show her power. We have nothing against the Germans (but) she's just another unethical politician like the Greek politicians."
More than 7,000 police patrolled the streets of the capital; large areas of the city were shut off to the public and gatherings were banned outside the German Embassy.

ECOFIN: EU's Rehn Says Greece Can Expect Decision In November at the Latest

By Matina Stevis

LUXEMBOURG--A decision on a much-needed 31.5 billion euro ($40.7 billion) bailout tranche for Greece, withheld since June, can be expected in November at the latest, European Union Economics Chief Olli Rehn said Tuesday.
A two-year extension to Greece's fiscal targets -- reaching a 4.5% gross domestic product primary surplus -- will "have to be considered" by euro-zone finance ministers. He said that the European Commission had "a certain view" on this but he preferred to make it public when he had to make a formal recommendation to the euro-zone finance ministers' group. EU officials have said that the European Commission is in favor of such an extension. But there is no agreement among Greece's creditors over how the financing gap that such an extension would create could be filled.
With Greece saying it runs out of cash sometime in November, it had previously been hoped that the sizeable loan slice, earmarked for bank recapitalization and other payments, would come in October. But a review of Greece's compliance with its obligations under its program is still underway in Athens. The heads of the team of experts from Greece's troika of creditors --the European Commission, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund -- were in Luxembourg Monday to brief euro-zone finance ministers on the Greek situation.
Euro-zone officials described the discussion that followed the presentation as "heated".

Merkel pledges support for Greece in Athens visit

Demonstrators display a banner reading "Frau Merkel, get out"

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has pledged her country's continuing support to Greece, during her first visit to Athens since the eurozone crisis erupted nearly three years ago.
Mrs Merkel said Greece had made good progress in dealing with its vast debt but that it was on a "difficult path".
Thousands of people who blame Germany for forcing painful austerity measures on Greece are protesting in Athens.

Greece Still Taking its Toll on Euro

Ignore Greece at your peril.
Financially, Spain may be a much larger problem for the euro and the euro zone.
But the problems of Greece are becoming even more intransigent and even more of a risk to the survival of the single currency as we know it.
Yes, we have all been here before.
But each time the problems that confront Athens are revisited they appear deeper and even more impossible to resolve without some new ground-breaking effort that its creditors are still resisting.
The International Monetary Fund summed it up with its latest revision of the country’s finances predicting that Greece’s debt will reach more than 180% of GDP next year and will have fallen back only to 150% by the year 2020. This is far beyond the sustainable level of about 120% that the IMF would like to see.
To help reduce the immediate burden, Greece has been seeking  a two-year delay to the austerity targets set by the troika of creditors — the IMF, the European Central Bank and the European Union.
However, the proposal has been meeting as much resistance from finance ministers as a suggestion that the country’s creditors accept another haircut on Greek debts. In other words, that they write down some of the debts to keep Greece afloat and ensure the country is able to continue servicing the balance of its debts.
The dilemma for Greece’s creditors is just how far they can afford to ease the country’s bailout terms without signaling to other euro-zone debtors that they too can get away without full compliance and at the same time not pushing Greece too close to the political edge that makes continued membership of the euro impossible.

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