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Greece to leave Euro... Eventually

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Soros: Greek Bailout Won’t Rid Europe of ‘Danger’

 

Billionaire investor George Soros predicted weak growth and lingering political tension that could shatter Europe’s economic union even if Greece agrees to austerity measures.

 

“Right now the European Union and particularly the heavily indebted countries face a lost decade,” Soros said. “It might actually be longer than a decade because Japan that had a similar situation with the real estate boom and the banking crisis has had now 25 years of no growth,” Soros said.

 

“That will create tensions within the European Union, which could destroy the European Union,” he said. “And that’s a real danger.”

 

 

Read more http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-02-11/soros-says-greek-bailout-not-enough-to-rid-europe-of-danger-.html

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Greece 'a breath away from ground zero', PM warns

 

Greece is a "a breath away from ground zero", Prime Minister Lucas Papademos warned as he urged politicians to back an unpopular international bailout on Sunday that may have to be raised to €145bn to save the country from collapse.

 

 

He told the nation in a televised address on Saturday that a rejection of the deal today would lead to “uncontrollable economic chaos and social explosion”.

 

 

“This agreement will decide the country’s future,” he said. “We are just a breath away from ground zero.”

 

Amid scenes of continued mounting social unrest, politicians must today decide whether to sign off fresh austerity measures demanded by the country’s international lenders in order to release a second €130bn aid package to Athens.

 

 

The rescue must be secured by March 20 in order to stave off bankruptcy. It is on that date that the Greek government has to pay back €14.5bn of its debt to holders of its bonds.

 

 

Mr Papademos said parliament had a historic responsibility to back the bill, or face catastrophic consequences if Greece misses the deadline to service its debt.

 

Read more http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/financialcrisis/9077224/Greece-a-breath-away-from-ground-zero-PM-warns.html

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Merkel has herself to blame if Greece defaults

 

If Sunday's vote in Athens is a vote on Greek bankruptcy and the future of eurozone, it’s down to German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

 

 

What will Angela Merkel be doing this morning? Will she be clinging, white-knuckled to her kafe, chasing her Bockwurst round her plate, waiting to hear that the Greeks have passed their austerity budget?

 

 

If today’s vote in Athens is a vote on Greek bankruptcy and the future of eurozone, it’s because the German Chancellor has made it so.

 

 

To her the consequences are brutally clear: no austerity budget means no €130bn bail-out package, which means Greece defaults on March 20.

 

 

“All those who bear responsibility in Greece must know - we will not deviate from this position,” she said.

 

 

So then, is this finally the Day of Reckoning? The answer must be yes for Greece, more of that later. But, perhaps for the first time in three years of “make or break deadlines”, the answer is “no” for the eurozone.

 

 

The bankruptcy of Greece is no longer the threat to the eurozone that it once was. For all the frustration caused by the constant delays - Greece missed four deadlines last week alone - the time has not been wasted. Banks have busily untangling themselves from the thicket of Greek debt; repricing and restructuring debt and taking large write-downs. In total foreign banks have slashed their exposure to Greece by 60pc.

 

Contingency plans for a return to the Drachma have been drawn up in Athens, Berlin and Brussels. Maria Damanaki, Greece’s EU Commissioner, said last week: “The policy for Greece is internal devaluation within the eurozone but there is preparation for other solutions if Greece doesn’t make it on the eurozone path.”

 

 

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/financialcrisis/9076305/Merkel-has-herself-to-blame-if-Greece-defaults.html

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Seems to be various parts of Greece

Here's a link

http://www.newsit.gr/default.php?pname=Article&art_id=121676&catid=3

 

(LATER POSTS COMBINED) - by DrBubb

========

2/

Police station in central Athens under siege.

Looting and burning in Athens

3/

Protestors and police clash - Heralkeion in Crete

4/

Government buildings occupied in Sparta and Rhodes

5/

Link

http://www.zougla.gr/page.ashx?pid=85&amp

6/

http://live24.gr/webtv/kontrachannel/

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Government buildings occupied in Sparta and Rhodes

Occupy All Streets ?

 

No doubt there is serious protest and chaos breaking out in Greece.

 

This make accelerate the trend towards DEFAULT and Greece exiting the Euro.

 

Then what...?

 

More chaos, and some spreading to other countries.

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In the debate in parliament before the vote the Greek leader denounced the violence raging outside on the streets of Athens and said "they have no place in democracy"- Source Sky News

 

Don't you just Love It!!

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Riot police throwing chemicals inside a medical clinic where many injured demonstrators have been taken for treatment for exposure to the same stuff!!

 

1000 Germans shipped and landed in Eleusina

 

Eksarxia police station in Athens attacked with Molotov cocktails

 

greek traitor ministers watching a football match on tv whilst Athens is on fire with countless civilians being beaten and poisoned

 

tax office in Volos is burning with all the records

 

communist party minister throws the troika demands booklet at the minister of finance benizelos in parliament during session

 

fires are spreading further away from inner Athens

about 20 fires right now

 

CretaTV under civil occupation, calling people to come out for the revolution

 

Omonia metro station Athens gassed out by police

 

anonymous has just taken down police and prime minister sites

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In the debate in parliament before the vote the Greek leader denounced the violence raging outside on the streets of Athens and said "they have no place in democracy"- Source Sky News

 

Don't you just Love It!!

An unelected elite has grabbed control and is forcing austerity on the country to save foreign banks

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Greece passes new austerity deal amid rioting

DEREK GATOPOULOS and NICHOLAS PAPHITIS - 2/12/2012 11:52:39 PM

 

Greek lawmakers on Monday approved harsh new austerity measures demanded by bailout creditors to save the debt-crippled nation from bankruptcy, after rioters in central Athens torched buildings, looted shops and clashed with riot police.

 

The historic vote paves the way for Greece's European partners and the International Monetary Fund to release $170 billion (euro130 billion) in new rescue loans, without which Greece would default on its debt mountain next month and likely leave the eurozone _ a scenario that would further roil global markets.

 

Lawmakers voted 199-74 in favor of the cutbacks, despite strong dissent among the two main coalition members. A total 37 lawmakers from the majority Socialists and conservative New Democracy party either voted against the party line, abstained or voted present.

 

Sunday's clashes erupted after more than 100,000 protesters marched to the parliament to rally against the drastic cuts, which will ax one in five civil service jobs and slash the minimum wage by more than a fifth.

 

At least 10 buildings were on fire, including a movie theater, bank and cafeteria, and looters smashed dozens of shops in the worst riot damage in years. Dozens of police officers were injured and at least 55 protesters were hospitalized. Forty-five suspected rioters were arrested and a further 40 detained.

 

/more: http://www.onenewsnow.com/AP/Search/World/Default.aspx?id=1534830

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PROS AND CONS

 

Here is a closer look at Greece's two bleak options:

 

— Impose deep spending cuts in exchange for the bailout.

(The pros):

Greece needs the bailout to make a $19.1 billion (€14.5 billion) bond payment due March 20. Prime Minister Lucas Papademos warned that "a disorderly default would cast our country into a catastrophic adventure."

Papademos said the plan would help lift Greece out of recession next year.

In addition to the $172 billion bailout, Greece is negotiating a deal that would reduce the roughly $264 billion in debt it owes private creditors. Under that arrangement, about $132 billion would be shaved off the national debt and Greece would get more favorable repayment terms.

Selling government-owned companies, exposing professionals like architects and pharmacists to more competition and imposing other reforms is designed to make the economy more efficient in the long run.

Even with the austerity plan in place, the International Monetary Fund estimates it will be 2020 by the time Greece can shrink its debt load to a sustainable level.

 

(The cons):

Such austerity can be counterproductive because it can slow the economy and reduce tax revenue.

The government acknowledges that the austerity plan would cause Greece's economy to shrink 4 percent to 5 percent this year. Without it, the government would expect the economy to contract just 2.8 percent. The plan includes lowering the minimum wage by 22 percent and laying off 15,000 government workers this year.

So far, austerity has done nothing to reduce Greece's debt burden. Government debt as a percentage of the economy actually grew after it began imposing austerity — to nearly 160 percent in the July-September quarter of 2011 from 139 percent a year earlier.

"The whole plan was a losing proposition," says Dimitri Papadimitriou, president of the Levy Economics Institute and professor at Bard College.

Austerity is causing widespread hardship and inflaming social tensions. Papdimitriou worries that Greek society is "disintegrating" under the strain: "Poverty has been increasing, homeless rates have been increasing."

So have crime and suicides.

 

— Default and drop the euro.

(The pros):

Defaulting on its debt would ease the immediate strain on Greece's finances and probably cause it to abandon the euro, the currency used by 17 countries.

Dropping the euro would leave Greece with a much cheaper currency, its own drachma. That would juice Greece's economy by making Greek products less expensive around the world. This would give Greek exporters a competitive edge.

In the 1990s, Canada used a weak currency to expand exports and grow its way out of high government debts, says Simon Tilford, chief economist at the Centre for European Reform in London. As long as it's shackled to the euro, Greece lacks that option.

Bernard Baumohl, chief global economist at the Economic Outlook Group, thinks economic and financial pressure will eventually drive Greece to drop the euro.

And he thinks that would be for the best.

"What is worse for Europe — to have this matter linger on and on, with European citizens having to continue to bail out Greece and Portugal? Or to face the reality that these countries should not have joined the euro in the first place?" Baumohl asks.

 

(The cons):

Exiting the euro would throw Greece's banking system into chaos. Lenders would panic over the prospect of being repaid not in euros but in drachmas of dubious value. Adopting a suddenly much weaker currency could also ignite Greek inflation because prices of imported goods would soar.

International investors would be reluctant to lend to Greece's government, its companies or its banks. The freeze-up in credit could cause a depression, worse than what Greece is suffering now. Economists at UBS estimate that Greece's economy would shrink by up to 50 percent if it left the eurozone.

The pain would also likely spread as European banks absorbed losses on their loans to Greece. The worst-case scenario: A disaster akin to what followed Lehman Brothers' collapse in September 2008. Banks grew too fearful to lend to each other. Credit froze worldwide.

Some economists would like to see European governments produce a rescue package that pairs government cuts and reforms with economic aid designed to spur growth in Greece.

"When you have over 20 percent unemployment, you need to do something," Papadimitriou says.

He wants European countries to propose something like the U.S. aid plan that rescued an impoverished Europe after World War II.

"You need something similar to the Marshall Plan," Papadimitriou says.

 

 

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/us/2012/02/11/greeces-grim-choice-deep-budget-cuts-or-default/#ixzz1mDbcas2L

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GS Head... a close shave?

 

Tom Heneghan going nutz:

http://www.myspace.com/tom_heneghan_intel/blog

Greek financial officers have told the European Central Bank (ECB) they will NOT 'bail out' Goldman Sachs and its crooked derivative bets that were made against the Greek nation itself.

 

Greek financial officers have also told the ECB that the alleged creditor Goldman Sachs is not only going to take a haircut but they are going to get their head shaved.

 

Greece is ready to follow the path of Iceland and will not issue new bonds that legitimize Goldman Sachs crooked derivative trading.

GS... to "get their head shaved" - that's a good line !

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CHOPPY WEEK ?

 

Greece’s persistent troubles force investors to question Wall Street’s strong start to 2012

 

By Associated Press, Updated: Sunday, February 12, 2:55 PM

 

NEW YORK — For the past six weeks, Wall Street traders have optimistically pushed the Dow Jones industrial average up nearly 4.8 percent on a belief that the U.S. economic recovery is finally gaining momentum.

 

On Monday, that cheerfulness will be put to the test as investors balance good news at home with lingering fears over the stability of Europe.

 

After three days of rioting, the Greek parliament Sunday approved a new set of austerity measures that are likely to cause much pain for its already-struggling citizens. The measures clear the way for the nation to reduce its debt and gain another bailout from the other European nations and the International Monetary Fund.

 

Greeks took to the streets Friday in protest of cuts including a 22-percent drop in the minimum wage. This comes with the unemployment rate over 20 percent and the economy in the fifth year of a recession. Riots and fires continued all throughout the weekend.

 

The unrest and calls from some European officials for even stricter austerity measures caused widespread selling by investors Friday. The Dow closed down 89 points, or 0.7 percent. It was the worst day of the year for the market.

 

Even as the measures pass, Wall Street must still ask itself if the worst of Europe’s troubles are over or if the crisis has just been temporarily delayed.

 

“Fear is going to be back this week,” said Jeffrey Sica, president of Sica Wealth Management. “It’s going to be a very, very volatile choppy week primarily because no matter how this turns out, there’s going to be this aspect of skepticism that’s going to keep investors very quick to sell.”

 

Sica said a yes vote means a quick boost for the market before investors remember that Greece has voted for such measures in the past and continually broken its promises to make painful cuts. In his view, this year’s rally isn’t the result of overwhelming confidence. It’s because a fear of Europe’s problems has led investors to U.S. stocks which are safe by comparison.

 

“The heart of the issue is the rest of Europe — and the next domino to fall — which is Italy,” he added. “You can ignore one small country, but you can’t ignore (the European Union), the second-largest economy in the world.”

 

/more: http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/markets/greeces-persistent-troubles-force-investors-to-question-wall-streets-strong-start-to-2012/2012/02/12/gIQAlTDH9Q_story.html

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The Non-Solution : All Suffering, No Debt Reduction

 

This Is What An Economic Depression Looks Like In The 21st Century

 

This-Is-What-An-Economic-Depression-Looks-Like-In-The-21st-Century-250x164.jpg

 

Do you want to see what a 21st century economic depression looks like? Just look at Greece. Once upon a time, the Greek economy was thriving, the Greek government was borrowing money like there was no tomorrow and Greek citizens were thoroughly enjoying the bubble of false prosperity that all that debt created. Those that warned that Greece was headed for a financial collapse were laughed at and were called "doom and gloomers". Well, nobody is laughing now. You see, the truth is that debt is a very cruel master. Greeks were able to live way beyond their means for many, many years but eventually a day of reckoning arrived. At this point, the Greek economy has been in a recession for five years in a row, and the economic crisis in that country is rapidly getting even worse. It was just recently announced that the overall rate of unemployment in Greece has soared above 20 percent and the youth unemployment rate has risen to an astounding 48 percent. One out of every five retail stores has been shut down and parents are literally abandoning children in the streets. The frightening thing is that this is just the beginning. Things are going to get a lot worse in Greece. And in case you haven't been paying attention, these kinds of conditions are coming to the United States as well. We are heading down the exact same road as Greece went down, and the economic pain that this country is eventually going to suffer is going to be beyond anything that most Americans would dare to imagine.

 

All debt spirals eventually come to an end. For years, Greece borrowed huge amounts of very cheap money, but there came a point when the debt became absolutely strangling and the rest of the world refused to lend the Greek government money at such cheap rates anymore.

 

Greece would have defaulted long before now if the EU and the IMF had not stepped in to bail them out. But along with those bailouts came strings. The EU and the IMF insisted that the Greek government cut spending and raise taxes.

 

Well, those spending cuts and tax increases caused the economy to slow down. Tax revenues decreased and deficit reduction targets were missed. So the EU and the IMF insisted on even more spending cuts and tax increases.

 

Even after all of the spending cuts and all of the tax increases that we have seen, the debt to GDP ratio in Greece is still higher than it was before the crisis began. Today, the Greek national debt is sitting at 142 percent of GDP.

. . .

Protesters in Greece are absolutely outraged that the EU and the IMF are now demanding a 22 percent reduction in the minimum wage.

 

Most families in Greece are just barely surviving at this point. Unfortunately, Greece is probably looking at depression conditions for many years to come.

 

Over the past three years, the size of the Greek economy has shrunk by 16 percent.

 

In 2012, it is being projected that the Greek economy will shrink by another 5 percent.

 

Sadly, that projection is probably way too optimistic.

/more: http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/archives/this-is-what-an-economic-depression-looks-like-in-the-21st-century

=== === ===

 

 

James Dines has spoken about; "the coming End of the Age of Jobs" / and "the coming End of the Age of Travel"

 

James Dines: Gold to Challenge Last Year’s Highs in 2012 on the Way to $3,000 oz. and Beyond

Uranium and Rare Earth equities are the buys of a lifetime

 

/see FS: http://www.financialsense.com/financial-sense-newshour/guest-expert/2012/01/27/james-dines/gold-to-challenge-last-years-highs-in-2012-on-way-to-3000-oz

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More than 40 MPs ousted as Greece approves EU-IMF deal

 

papademosparliament_390_0212.jpg

 

Greece’s Parliament approved in the early hours of Monday the country’s new loan agreement with the European Union and the International Monetary Fund despite more than 40 PASOK and New Democracy MPs voting against the terms of the deal.

 

Out of 300 lawmakers, 278 cast their ballot following several hours of intense debate. Of those, 199 voted ‘yes’ in principle, while 74 voted ‘no’ and five voted ‘present’. The rest did not vote.

 

Twenty two PASOK MPs and 21 New Democracy deputies voted against the bill. In both cases, thoe lawmakers were expelled from their parties.

 

Former Transport Minister Makis Voridis and Deputy Mercant Marine Minister Adonis Georgiadis went against the line of their party, Popular Orthodox Rally (LAOS), by voting for the bill. Both were expelled.

 

It was the first time in Greek parliamentary history that so many lawmakers were ousted from their parties on the same night.

 

The vote followed a tense debate in Parliament about the terms of the agreement, which include unpopular measures such as a 22 percent cut to the minimum wage and further reductions in pensions.

 

Prime Minister Lucas Papademos repeated his warning that if Greece did not take up the new loan agreement, it would face a «catastrophic» disorderly default.

 

/more: http://www.ekathimerini.com/4dcgi/_w_articles_wsite1_1_13/02/2012_427389

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Buying Time? Will they really get "six months" from this mess.

 

 

Europe has 'mishandled' Greece, argues Soros

 

Billionaire investor George Soros predicted weak growth and lingering political tension that could shatter Europe’s economic union even if Greece agrees to austerity measures.

 

“Right now the European Union and particularly the heavily indebted countries face a lost decade,” Soros said. “It might actually be longer than a decade because Japan that had a similar situation with the real estate boom and the banking crisis has had now 25 years of no growth,” Soros said.

 

“That will create tensions within the European Union, which could destroy the European Union,” he said. “And that’s a real danger.”

 

Soros spoke in an interview taped on Feb. 9 for CNN’s “Fareed Zakaria GPS,” scheduled to air today.

 

A package of budget, wage and pension cuts that Greece’s parliment could adopt as soon as tomorrow is “not necessarily going to work in the long run,” Soros said. “But it will certainly buy you another six months of quiet on the Greek front.”

 

“Greece is a sick situation” that has been “mishandled” by European authorities and “will continue to be an irritant and a problem for Europe,” Soros said. The European Union, once a desirable objective, has become “more of an imposition,” he said.

 

The interim government of Greek Prime Minister Lucas Papademos Feb.10 approved budget cuts needed to secure a second package of aid from euro-zone finance ministers, preparing the way for a ratification vote in parliament today.

 

/see: http://www.ekathimerini.com/4dcgi/_w_articles_wsite2_1_12/02/2012_427337

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ANGIE's ARMS

 

Greece pressured to buy German armaments with bail-out loans

 

Athens - Greece fought hard for independence from the Ottoman Empire, to then suffer under German occupation. As a result it ensures a strong modern defense system, but it is under undue pressure to buy armaments from Germany.

Greek politicians are endeavouring to come to an arrangement with the Troika this weekend over the next tranche of bail-out loans needed to stave off a Greek exit from the Euro. Whilst it is widely reported that Angela Merkel is keen to ensure that Greece remains in the Eurozone, there is a key reason why Germany stands to benefit from Greece securing further loans, that is rarely reported on. The German armament industry will continue to be a major beneficiary of Greek spending if Greece avoids a Eurozone exit.

 

As austerity measures are loaded on the Greek people, creating a crisis situation that few Greeks apart from the wealthy elite are untouched by, the Greek government remains committed to its extravagant spending on armaments, making it the fourth-largest importer of arms in the world.

 

 

Read more: http://www.digitaljournal.com/article/318237#ixzz1mGCx8DDs

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Greece and Germany are playing a dangerous game of chicken: this cannot last

 

By Daniel Knowles .. The Telegraph .. February 13th, 2012

EXCERPT

 

This is not a subversion of democracy: the Germans are handing over the money, and the Greeks' democratic government is choosing to take it. The only sovereign power the Greeks lack is the one to print and inflate their way out of this crisis, and they surrendered that a decade ago. That's not to forgive the Germans, who designed this disastrous currency, and who continue to make things worse. But the Greeks got into this themselves.

 

However, Greece's powerlessness might not last. As the graph below shows, Greece's primary deficit has actually improved sharply. Indeed, Stephanie Flanders reports the country already has a primary surplus. Surprise surprise, cutting spending does actually work in a small economy like Greece's.

 

greecebal.png

(Greece's primary deficit, millions of euros. Source: European Central Bank)

 

The problem for Greece is that the whole of Europe is now entering an austerity-induced depression, which might undo all of last year's good work. However, if we assume that Greece will achieve a sustainable primary surplus this year, as Italy has, then suddenly everything changes.

. . .

Greece is being forced to take its unpleasant medicine today precisely because tomorrow, it may not be possible to force it to. We are entering a dangerous game of chicken between creditor and debtor – one that could start a total collapse of the European banking system if it goes wrong. And if that happens, the shocking photos will start coming from countries other than Greece.

 

/more: http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/danielknowles/100136919/greece-and-germany-are-playing-a-dangerous-game-of-chicken-this-cannot-last/

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A NEW CURRENCY - Takes about 4 months to get designed, printed, and ready to circulate

(but it may be underway already)

 

Plan B?

So there has been a very different, private policy conversation recently, full of angst, about what might happen if the eurozone cannot stay together.

 

_58432314_anal_euros_delarue-prelims-watermark-design-origination.jpg

Designing and printing a new currency would take about four months

 

"I've spoken to people about this in chancelleries and in parlours of power across Europe," says David Marsh, who has written a history of the euro, co-chairs a central banking think tank and stays in close contact with the euro's key players.

 

"I am convinced that there is a Plan B - people have told me that there is one," he adds. "But I don't know what it is and there's no reason why anybody should even think about making it open. It has got to be locked in a safe."

 

The reason for this secrecy?

 

Because when it comes to money, to the cash in people's pockets and bank accounts, then psychology lurks, and panic is always possible.

 

In Greece, there has already been a "slow run on the banks", reports political scientist Aristotle Kallis, as people take cash out of their accounts or send it abroad.

 

"They still feel that something will go horribly wrong - either Greece is going to move out of the euro or be kicked out of the euro."

 

And then, they fear, "there's going to be a devaluation of the new currency and all this money will be converted automatically to the new currency".

 

New currency

A government planning to leave the euro is likely to put in a discreet but urgent call to one of the top international currency printers - like the UK-based firm De La Rue.

 

It prints everything from the UK's pound sterling to the newest version of the currency in Iraq, the dinar.

 

 

Leaders like the Greek prime minister may not talk about a Plan B, but many are convinced there is one

The company will not comment on any plans it may have for Europe, but is clearly ready should opportunity arise.

 

So how long does it take to plan and introduce new notes and coins?

 

"I don't think you could do it much faster than four months," says Mark Crickett, one of De La Rue's consultants.

 

/source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-16981897

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February 2012 Last updated at 09:26

 

What if Greece had to get a new currency?By Chris Bowlby

 

BBC Radio 4 Analysis

 

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-16981897

 

 

Although the immediate threat of Greece defaulting on its debt looks to have been averted, it still faces years of economic crisis as it struggles to bring down its debt. Support is growing within the country for a return to the drachma and some European leaders have said the euro could survive a Greek exit. So, Radio 4's Chris Bowlby asks, what would happen if Greece had to get a new currency?

 

The eurozone crisis is not just about political deals or high finance. It is also about confidence in the cash in people's pockets.

 

The euro was meant to symbolise a more united and stable continent for every eurozone citizen.

 

But if the single currency begins to fragment, if a country or countries reintroduce national currencies, everyone in the eurozone could be affected.

 

Haggling has continued over the terms of the latest Greek bailout, while political tension rises in Greece itself.

 

And as austerity bites deeper, few believe the overall crisis will be solved soon.

 

Plan B?

 

So there has been a very different, private policy conversation recently, full of angst, about what might happen if the eurozone cannot stay together.

 

Designing and printing a new currency would take about four months

"I've spoken to people about this in chancelleries and in parlours of power across Europe," says David Marsh, who has written a history of the euro, co-chairs a central banking think tank and stays in close contact with the euro's key players.

 

"I am convinced that there is a Plan B - people have told me that there is one," he adds. "But I don't know what it is and there's no reason why anybody should even think about making it open. It has got to be locked in a safe."

 

The reason for this secrecy?

 

Because when it comes to money, to the cash in people's pockets and bank accounts, then psychology lurks, and panic is always possible.

 

In Greece, there has already been a "slow run on the banks", reports political scientist Aristotle Kallis, as people take cash out of their accounts or send it abroad.

 

"They still feel that something will go horribly wrong - either Greece is going to move out of the euro or be kicked out of the euro."

 

And then, they fear, "there's going to be a devaluation of the new currency and all this money will be converted automatically to the new currency".

 

New currency

 

A government planning to leave the euro is likely to put in a discreet but urgent call to one of the top international currency printers - like the UK-based firm De La Rue.

 

It prints everything from the UK's pound sterling to the newest version of the currency in Iraq, the dinar.

 

Leaders like the Greek prime minister may not talk about a Plan B, but many are convinced there is one

The company will not comment on any plans it may have for Europe, but is clearly ready should opportunity arise.

 

So how long does it take to plan and introduce new notes and coins?

 

"I don't think you could do it much faster than four months," says Mark Crickett, one of De La Rue's consultants.

 

But a government could not commission and take delivery of a new currency without word leaking out and panic spreading.

 

It is much more likely that a withdrawal for the euro would be announced suddenly, and then there would be an interim period - those four months, say - during which a temporary national currency would be used.

 

Euro notes previously in circulation in a withdrawing country might be overprinted, or have special stickers added.

 

 

Please visit site to read more.

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(European ministers are "wise-ing up" at last):

 

Greek aid may not get full approval

By Sarah Turner SYDNEY (MarketWatch) -- Germany and other European nations may not be prepared to fully approve a 130 billion euro ($172.1 billion) bailout for Greece at a meeting set for Wednesday, the Financial Times newspaper reported late Monday, citing officials. Germany and other euro-zone nations were unconvinced Greece would undertake austerity measures demanded by the bloc's finance ministers in order to receive more funding, the report said. If full approval is not obtained at the meeting on Wednesday, then ministers may only give conditional approval for Greece's bailout and the plan will be reassessed at a meeting next week, according to the report.

 

/see: http://www.marketwatch.com/story/greek-aid-may-not-get-full-approval-wed-report-2012-02-13

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JIM KUNSTLER's TAKE on Greece

 

The Greeks have lately remembered some of their own history. The Germans have beset them before, they now recall, and some of the money currently labeled "debt" may have been filed incorrectly, the Greeks say. It actually belongs in the folder labeled "war reparations." (Granted, it is hard to read folders when you are bending over so far that things look upside-down.) Germany, it happens, remembers too the last time that this folder was flopped out on the table. Things didn't work out so well for the Weimar finance ministry in those dark days ninety years ago.

 

Meanwhile, Athens and several other Greek cities ignite in an overture to what might come to be called the European Spring.

 

Reality steals onto the scene bearing a message from Mother Gaia: "None of your shenanigans make the numbers add up. The European financial arrangement will blow up because it must." Therefore, expect it to blow up. Germany will not keep pounding sand down the rat-hole of PIIGS insolvency for another year. Anyway, the proverbial can that everyone was kicking down the road - it fell down the rat-hole, too, so there is nothing left to kick except Greek civil servants, both current and retired and, alas, they represent that part of the Greek economy not occupied by olive cultivation, which is to say most of it. It turns out, when you kick Greeks down the road (probably Spaniards, Italians, Portuguese, and Irish, too) sparks fly off them and things catch fire.

 

The bottom line seems to be that Europe can either go broke or burn down, or do both. But it can't go back to what it was doing before: pretending to be rich and care-free.

 

/see: http://kunstler.com/blog/2012/02/the-john-brown-moment.html

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A NEW CURRENCY - Takes about 4 months to get designed, printed, and ready to circulate

(but it may be underway already)

...

_58432314_anal_euros_delarue-prelims-watermark-design-origination.jpg

Designing and printing a new currency would take about four months

I like the idea of putting Einstein on it, so one will always remember that the little Einsteins brought this new currency over the populace. Let's hope we won't get a brain drain!

 

What I don't get is why the little Einsteins did not ask for a voluntary 100% jubilee. No default, of course, because it is super-duper voluntary.

 

I am totally for a global 100% non-default default. Rate everyone AAA afterwards, problem almost solved, right? I feel like joining the little Einsteins soon. Bonus, here I come!

 

The bottom line seems to be that Europe can either go broke or burn down, or do both. But it can't go back to what it was doing before: pretending to be rich and care-free.

Nooooooooo!

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