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Friday, March 26, 2010

Economist on Greece bailout, er, "rescue"

The bailout structure you've all been waiting for is here, now that 16 nations of the European Union (EU) have agreed to supply Greece with a backstop for its debt financing problems.

The Economist has the details:

"“THIS was the case that was never supposed to happen,” said Angela Merkel on Friday March 26th, at the end of a short but tense European Union summit in Brussels. Germany’s chancellor did not need to elaborate. To her visible distaste, Europe’s leaders had just agreed a mechanism for rescuing Greece from a sovereign credit crunch...

...The mechanism agreed late on March 25th by the 16 countries that share the euro was harsh. At the insistence of Mrs Merkel, Greece will be able to tap into emergency help only if available market financing has been deemed “insufficient” by experts from the European Commission and European Central Bank..."

I'll be perfectly honest here and admit that I do not fully understand the ins and outs of this agreement, or how and when the rescue terms will exactly kick in (should Greece need to tap into the "emergency help").

Luckily for all of us, we get a simple background on Greece's problems and the EU-IMF rescue agreement from the Economist. It just might take more careful reading on your editor's part to get it through his addled brain.

You may also want to check out Peter Cohan's take on the Greek rescue plan and the EU debt contagion that's hitting Greece, Portugal, and Spain. I know I will want to avail myself of that knowledge before the weekend is through. Cheers!