Daniel Gros, 22 June 2011

Protests continue in Greece as its leaders debate the latest suggestions for dealing with its crippling debt. One proposal is for Greece to privatise several of its assets. This column argues that privatisation is a mirage. If solvency is the problem, privatisation will only make matters worse, especially if it has to be done at distressed prices.

Kai Konrad, Holger Zschäpitz, 10 June 2011

A year after the rescue of Greece, the Eurozone is still on life support. This column argues that Europe’s policymakers have got their strategy desperately wrong.

Karl Whelan, 09 June 2011

In a recent Vox column, Hans Werner Sinn of the prestigious Institute for Economic Research claims that the German Bundesbank is effectively propping up banks across the Eurozone’s periphery. He adds that doing this risks a major crisis. Here, Karl Whelan of University College Dublin argues that Professor Sinn’s analysis is incorrect and that his policy prescriptions are extremely unhelpful and even dangerous.

Paolo Manasse, 30 May 2011

How should Greece try to reduce its debt? Some say Greece should privatise some of its ports and tourist hotspots. While on paper such a move might significantly reduce the debt, this column argues that these calculations rely on some shaky assumptions. Such a sale could make Greece worse off overall.

Paolo Manasse, 24 May 2011

For a long time analysts have been arguing about whether Greece will default on part of its debt – leaving its creditors to take a “haircut”. This column argues that this prospect is becoming more and more likely.

Angelo Baglioni, 21 May 2011

Should Greece's creditors tackle its mountain of debt by writing some of it off or stretching out the repayment period? This column argues that both approaches are likely to have profound negative repercussions for Greece and the rest of Europe. Instead, it suggests a “market-based solution.”

Jeffrey Frankel, 16 May 2011

It is a year since Greece was bailed out by EU and IMF and there are many who label it a failure. This column says that while there is plenty of blame to go around, there were three big mistakes made by the European Central Bank. Number one: Letting Greece join the euro in the first place.

Charles Wyplosz, 29 April 2011

Restructuring is a taboo word in Brussels. This column argues that debt restructuring may be a viable option for some of the countries on Europe’s highly indebted periphery.

Giancarlo Corsetti, Michael Devereux, John Hassler, Gilles Saint-Paul, Hans-Werner Sinn, Jan-Egbert Sturm, Xavier Vives, 18 March 2011

Will the Greek rescue package be enough or is restructuring inevitable? In this column, members of the European Economic Advisory Group argue that even if the sovereign debt crisis is resolved, Greece must deal with its unsustainable current-account deficit. This requires an unenviable choice between internal and external depreciation and a government strong enough to take on the country’s rife tax evasion.

Ramon Marimon, 17 March 2011

Europe’s history is littered with crises. This column argues that the latest Eurozone crisis is the latest in a long line out of which the region has to evolve. The problem, it says, is that the current package being discussed fails to draw a line under this crisis. While the proposal is reasonable, it is not credible.

Daniel Gros, 14 March 2011

This weekend, EU leaders agreed to the outlines of a new mechanism to deal with Eurozone debt problems after the current mechanism expires in 2013. The mechanism is a continuation in the leaders’ preference for “tough talk and soft conditions”. This column argues that the package is merely the next step down the slippery slope of EU taxpayers sharing the burden with Greek taxpayers.

Heiko Hesse, Brenda González-Hermosillo, 10 March 2011

Just how much systemic risk remains in the advanced economies? This column uses Markov-switching techniques to examine volatility in equity, interbank, sovereign credit-default swaps, and foreign-exchange markets. It finds that while overall systemic stress emanating from interbank spreads and foreign-exchange volatility has subsided, there are still pockets of systemic risk, particularly in sovereign credit default swaps and equity markets – and this is especially the case for Europe’s periphery.

Albert Marcet, 04 March 2011

Albert Marcet of the London School of Economics explains to Viv Davies why predictions of potential Spanish sovereign default are misguided. Marcet presents his views on Spain’s fiscal sustainability, its unemployment and housing problems, the autonomous regions and the recapitalisation of the cajas. He also discusses debt and fiscal coordination in the eurozone and comments on his new role as scientific chair of the Euro Area Business Cycle Network (EABCN). The interview was recorded in London in February 2011. [Also read the transcript]

Zsolt Darvas, Jean Pisani-Ferry, André Sapir, 28 February 2011

It is well over a year since concerns over debt sustainability in Greece began spilling out to the rest of the Eurozone. The crisis continues. This column presents a three-part plan aiming to clean up the banks, reduce Greece’s public debt, and foster growth in the peripheral economies.

Monika Merz, Andreas Haufler, Wolfram Richter, Bernd Lucke, 24 February 2011

The European rescue fund is steeped in controversy. This column argues that both the fund and the case to keep it permanently are unjustified. It says that they create the wrong incentives and that they will only further intensify the debt crisis in Europe, at the risk of undermining the foundations of the EU itself. It calls on the German government to act.

Daniel Gros, Thomas Mayer, 11 February 2011

It is almost a year since commentators began suggesting the idea of a European Monetary Fund. This column, by two of the main proponents, argues that since then the Eurozone has created an emergency funding mechanism, but not a Fund. Europe’s leaders urgently need to take steps towards creating a credible mechanism that can deal with overly indebted countries.

Uri Dadush, Bennett Stancil, 06 February 2011

The recent fiscal problems in Greece, Ireland, Italy, Portugal, and Spain have left the single currency in need of rescue. But this column argues that this is only part of the problem. Until leaders deal with the core issues – the periphery’s lost competitiveness and misaligned economic structures – Europe’s rescue will ultimately fail.

Paolo Manasse, 05 February 2011

Recent press reports suggest that Greece and Ireland may be allowed to buy back some of their debt. This column provides an example to show that if the purpose of the restructuring is to reduce the burden of payments for the debtor and to have creditors share the losses, a unilateral partial default or a debt swap would be preferable to a buyback.

Guillermo de la Dehesa, 11 January 2011

The past year has plunged the Eurozone into crisis with many fearing for what 2011 has in store. In this column the CEPR Chairman argues that to prevent the Eurozone’s sovereign debt crisis from becoming a self-fulfilling contagion, the bailouts should not go beyond Ireland; they should not be extended to Portugal even less so to Spain. It outlines 10 reasons why.

Ricardo Cabral, 15 December 2010

Jean-Claude Juncker and Giulio Tremonti have recently proposed the creation of a European Debt Agency that would enable each EU country able to issue “European bonds” of up to 40% of GDP. This column argues that while the proposal is a brilliant piece of economic reengineering in favour of the Eurozone creditor countries, especially Germany and France, cooperation would be better for all.

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