Europe is facing an austerity backlash. Protests in Portugal, Spain and Greece speak volumes about what the citizens in those countries think of proposed measures to comply to European Union agreements. Germany continues to be the strongest economy and this week Angela Merkel has renewed her support of the eurozone. This happened during an event honoring former Chancellor Helmut Kohl the German political figure who was instrumental on the creation of the euro. Germany has ratified the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) but has capped German contribution to 190 billion euros.
Portugal has a 15.7% unemployment rate by official figures and up to 20% if people who have stopped looking for work are accounted for. At times 10% of its population has marched on the streets protesting the tax hikes and other austerity measures.
Spain has proposed a 39 billion euro austerity package with its 2013 budget. Unemployment rate in Spain is well above 20%. Protests have gotten violent and 5 regions have asked the goverment for financial aid. The austerity measures include unpopular items such as wage freezes for public sector workers, tax increases and spending cuts.
Speaking of unpopular decisions. The French goverment has confirmed that there will be a new tax rate of 75% for people earning over 1 million euros. This is part of an effort to reduce the deficit by 10 billion euros.
- France Confirms Zero Growth in Q2 | OANDA Forex Blog 
- IMF Publishes Global Stability Report | OANDA Forex Blog 
- Bank of Spain Warns Economy is Shrinking at a Significant Rate | OANDA Forex Blog 
- The UK Recession is Technically Over | OANDA Forex Blog 
- Portugal Protests to Continue as Austerity Measures Near | OANDA Forex Blog 
- Merkel Renews Euro Pledge after Celebrating Kohl | OANDA Forex Blog 
- France to Increase Taxes to 75 percent for Top Earners | OANDA Forex Blog 
- Euro Moves Up and Touches 1.2940 as Spain Austerity Bolsters Bailout Prospects | OANDA Forex Blog 
- Greek Government Agrees to Cuts | OANDA Forex Blog 
- UK Economy Shrinks 4 percent | OANDA Forex Blog 
- Spain to Impose 39 billion Euros Austerity Package | OANDA Forex Blog 
- Yields Could Push Spain into Seeking Bailout | OANDA Forex Blog 
- Germany Ratifies ESM Caps Its Contribution to 190 billion euros | OANDA Forex Blog 
- European Leaders Struggle to Overcome Fresh Crisis Stalemate | OANDA Forex Blog 
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