Monday, 20 September 2010

Greek bank stress tests delayed
FT: The international community has postponed bank stress tests for Greece to give the country breathing space as Athens prepares to test the success of its European roadshow last week by raising more money in the capital markets.

The so-called “troika” – the International Monetary Fund, European Commission and European Central Bank – has agreed with Greece’s central bank to delay testing the solvency of the country’s struggling bank sector by one month to the end of October.
See full article.

Greek truckers step up action.
See full article.

New Democracy strikes back
Conservative opposition leader Antonis Samaras says the government has lied about the necessity of the austerity measures now being implemented in a speech at the country's highest-profile trade event.
Read the speech.
Read the Q&A.

Greece rules out possibiity of default
FT: Greece’s finance minister has strongly rejected the idea that Athens will be forced to restructure its debts, saying that a default would break the eurozone.

On a two-day visit to London, Paris and Frankfurt to convince investors that Athens has turned a corner in its year-long economic crisis, George Papaconstantinou told the Financial Times that a Greek default would spark selling in other so-called peripheral bond markets of Portugal and Ireland.
See full article.

Sarrazin cleaves Germany in two
Der Spiegel: Rarely has a man influenced the German public discourse as much as central bank board member Thilo Sarrazin has done with his book "Deutschland schafft sich ab" ("Germany Does Itself In"). In just two weeks, Germany has been hit by three waves of debate stemming from the tome.

Criticism bordering on revulsion dominated the first wave of the reaction. Politicians and opinion leaders condemned Sarrazin almost unanimously. But then it slowly became apparent that many citizens agreed with Sarrazin.
See full article.

Interview with David Petraeus
Der Spiegel: "The construction of Improvised Explosive Devices as well as home-made explosives, tragically, is quite advanced and sometimes even innovative. They know how to use off-the-shelf technology and use it effectively. That is why this symbiotic relationship between the many different groups is so important: Al-Qaida might have a particularly skillful IED maker who shares his expertise with other organizations. Another group might have effective skills in information technology that is passed on to others. There may be some who are good in false documents, again others in weaponry -- and they all share their knowledge, which all adds to our great concern. We're not talking about a threat to Afghanistan alone. It's a threat to the world. The attack on Times Square was not done by al-Qaida, it was launched by a Pakistani Taliban. And other groups are carrying out or wanting to expand their own transnational attacks, too."
See full interview.

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