austerity

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Spain Election Puts Ruling Party on the Brink

The Popular Party may not have enough votes to hold on

(Newser) - A strong showing Sunday by a pair of upstart parties in Spain's general election upended the country's traditional two-party system, with the ruling Popular Party winning the most votes but falling far short of a parliamentary majority and at risk of being booted from power. Days or weeks... More »

UK Cops to Public: Solve Your Own Crimes

Citizens often told to conduct own investigations for common offenses: report

(Newser) - It's not that British police don't want to help you solve crimes that have victimized you—it's just that they want you to help you solve those crimes. A report released by Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary on crime figures and the "use of police... More »

Sarkozy Costs French Taxpayers $2.6M a Year

He gets quite a lot of perks as an ex-prez

(Newser) - French President Francois Hollande is trying to fix the country's debt problems—but he's being foiled just a bit by his predecessor. French taxpayers spend $2.6 million a year, possibly more, on Nicolas Sarkozy's upkeep, Bloomberg reports. That's because former French presidents are entitled to... More »

Why We Need to 'Kick That Can'

Paul Krugman: US debt problems are long-term; fixing now would be 'destructive'

(Newser) - Paul Krugman appears exasperated with John Boehner's exasperation. On Wednesday, the speaker of the House discussed his determination to tackle the deficit, saying, “I’ve watched them kick this can down the road for 22 years since I’ve been here. I’ve had enough of it. It’... More »

Germans Save Money by Exporting Old People

Opponents call practice 'inhumane'

(Newser) - With long-term care costs rising—and actual care standards falling—a growing number of Germans are saving money by shipping their elderly relatives to foreign homes, the Guardian reports. Most are headed to Eastern Europe; an estimated 7,146 were in Hungary last year, along with more 3,000 in... More »

Protesters Storm Greek Conference, Throw Coffee

They were angry over presence of German officials

(Newser) - Dozens of anti-austerity protesters broke into a conference center in northern Greece and clashed with police today to demonstrate against the presence of a German government official. The protesting municipal workers pushed and threw coffee on a German consul in Thessaloniki, Wolfgang Hoelsche-Obermaier, who arrived to attend a conference of... More »

Greek Parliament OKs Austerity Budget

But Europe still hasn't settled on aid package

(Newser) - Following the tight passage of an austerity package last week, Greece's parliament has approved a 2013 austerity budget. The budget, part of a plan to receive further foreign financing, passed by a margin of 167 to 128, the New York Times reports. It cuts salaries, pensions, and benefits by... More »

To Dodge Ticket Tax, Theater Sells Admission Carrots

Spanish media dub it the 'Carrot Rebellion'

(Newser) - When new austerity measures in Spain bumped the tax on theater tickets to 21% over the summer, Quim Marcé figured his theater in the small town of Bescanó would go under. Then he had an idea: Why not sell carrots, plentiful in the farmland that surrounds the village, instead of... More »

Soros to Germany: Put Up or Get Out of Eurozone

Billionaire investor says euro poor could be stronger without Germany

(Newser) - If Germany isn't going to take the lead—meaning take on weaker countries' debts and relax austerity demands—George Soros thinks it should just get out of the eurozone altogether, reports Reuters . Without Germany, Soros says the rest of Europe could service their debts more cheaply and be more... More »

Hollande: I'll Turn Economy Around in 2 Years

French president responds to criticism he's being too passive

(Newser) - With the euro crisis dragging down the French economy to nearly zero growth and unemployment surging, newly elected president François Hollande said he was giving himself two years to turn around the country's economy, reports the Wall Street Journal . Hollande, France's first socialist president in 17 years,... More »

Miners Barricade Themselves With Explosives

Italian miners fighting to keep their jobs

(Newser) - A group of Italian miners has seized roughly 770 pounds of explosives and barricaded itself underground in an attempt to pressure the Italian government into protecting the mine, Reuters reports. The government is meeting later this week to discuss the Sardinian mine's future, and many workers fear officials will... More »

Spain Rolls Out Painful New Austerity Measures

Taxes raised, benefits cut

(Newser) - Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy today announced tough new austerity measures that will reduce the country's budget deficit by $80 billion over the next two and a half years. Spain has been having a tough time meeting agreed-upon deficit targets, the New York Times reports, but yesterday eurozone finance... More »

Greek Government Just Weeks From Going Bust

Recession, budget cuts have wiped out tax revenue

(Newser) - Never mind the euro or the drachma, Greece's new currency could become the IOU, the New York Times finds. The country's government is rapidly running out of cash—despite the latest bailout of $161 billion—and it might have no money for salaries, pensions, or fuel imports as... More »

What Hollande's Victory Means for France

President-elect has a packed first 40 days

(Newser) - Following last night’s victory over Nicolas Sarkozy , Francois Hollande will have to jump right in to his new role—he will be sworn in as France’s president next Tuesday, the BBC notes. What does his election mean?
  • Hollande has vowed to renegotiate the eurozone budget treaty Sarkozy championed
... More »

World Markets Tumble on French-Greek Elections

Investors fear fresh crisis in eurozone

(Newser) - Markets worldwide have been seriously rattled by the rejection of pro-austerity governments by voters in France and Greece . Asian markets plunged, the euro dropped to a 3-month low against the dollar in early trading, and oil slipped to $97 a barrel. European shares also tumbled and yields rose on the... More »

Hollande Wins French Election, Topples Sarkozy

Says Hollande: 'Austerity can no longer be inevitable!'

(Newser) - Socialist Francois Hollande defeated conservative incumbent Nicolas Sarkozy today to become France's next president, heralding a change in how Europe tackles its debt crisis and how France flexes its military and diplomatic muscle around the world. Crowds filled the Place de la Bastille, the iconic plaza of the French... More »

'Fairy Tale' of Austerity Is Finally Dead

Paul Krugman: Europe realizing those policies made things worse

(Newser) - Paul Krugman doesn't use the words "I told you so," but he does pronounce the notion that austerity measures would fire up Europe's economy good and dead. European policy-makers had the misguided idea—one embraced by Republicans in the US—that cutting back on spending would... More »

4 Things Obama Must Do to Win

Robert Reich: It's time for a clear economic strategy

(Newser) - President Obama's economic message is that "we're on the right track" and we should give him more time. But if the economy "stalls"—about a 50-50 chance—the message won't hold up, writes Robert Reich in the Guardian . It's time for Obama to... More »

Strike, Protests Paralyze Spain

Millions protest austerity drive, labor laws changes

(Newser) - Spain's leaders insist that the country will not become the next Greece, although yesterday's events certainly looked familiar to residents of Athens. Police clashed with demonstrators who torched trash bins and cars in Barcelona amid a nationwide general strike called by unions in response to labor law changes... More »

Eurozone Economy Shrinks

Nine of 17 member states post a fall

(Newser) - For the first time since 2009, the eurozone economy contracted last quarter. The fourth quarter of 2011 saw the GDP shrink 0.3% compared to the third quarter; the last quarterly contraction occurred during the second quarter of 2009 when the GDP dropped 0.2%. Meanwhile, the GDP grew just... More »

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