Friday, 15 May 2015

Eurozone challenges

Here's an excellent infographic from Boston University explaining in one place and with much detail why the crisis in Europe is still a long way from being over: 


Boston University Online

If I had to sum it up in words, it would go something like this: sluggish recovery, threat of deflation, high unemployment (11.2%), particularly youth unemployment (23%; the worst still in Spain = 51%), lack of access to finance for small businesses (banks are still hoarding cash), low productivity, low wage growth, an increasing threat of poverty, and of course - still huge levels of public debts (corporate and household as well), coupled with an ageing population which is a lethal combination for a sustainable pensions system, particularly to those countries who in addition to huge debts and an ageing population are experiencing net emigration (Spain, Greece and Italy are leading the way). 

So the overall picture is, unfortunately, still bleak, to say the least. At this moment I don't see how Europe is going to avoid being stuck in a Japanese-style decade-long stagnation. It's facing its own "balance sheet recession" as Richard Koo would call it. Japan however had one important caveat, it never faced a problem of high unemployment. Furthermore, if you reach a living standard as Japan has had in the 90s, then going through 20 years with close to zero growth is not that big of a problem. You're still a very rich country. However in Europe many of the Member States are not quite there yet. For most of them it's entirely their fault, but facing a decade or two of stagnation is not good news for a country yet to face the full benefits of EU convergence. 

1 comment:

  1. This blog is very informative and clazwork scholarship essay writing help is lack of access to finance for small businesses in the levels of public debts.

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