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to wish Hacking would sod off so we can all freak out/brainstorm the impending financial tsunami that is the Euro?

(46 Posts)
LemonDifficult Wed 20-Jul-11 17:20:18

I am, of course, sorry about the Dowlers phones being hacked, I am sorry about the Met not being squeaky clean (amazing!), that journalists sink low to get a story, and that politicians sometimes overlook good advice to hire their mates.

I also realise that columnists have fewer first person stories about their time working alongside the Greek Finance Ministers, or about being employed by dull European Banks. And that most of the discussion isn't taking place in English, in technicolour, with bonus custard pies and attractive redheads from the Cotswolds. But...

People - the Euro!

GypsyMoth Wed 20-Jul-11 17:27:32

yabu.......attractive redhead?? oh come on!!

GypsyMoth Wed 20-Jul-11 17:28:19

anyway yes,the euro....can you imagine if we had gone with it and it was our currency??

grovel Wed 20-Jul-11 17:29:18

At least the police weren't bribed with Euros.

LemonDifficult Wed 20-Jul-11 17:30:17

IloveTIFFANY - OK, but have you seen those Belgium bank wonks?

qwepoi Wed 20-Jul-11 17:30:57

Well said OP!

piloi Wed 20-Jul-11 17:31:57

YANBU there are major situations in both the US and the Eurozone which will have a significant impact on the global economy should solution not be found and yet no-one appears to know about them much less care

TheRhubarb Wed 20-Jul-11 17:34:01

<waits for someone to take offence at "brainstorm">

I'd rather bury my head in the sand with the euro. Not helpful I know but I just can't bear to think about Europe collapsing and the mess that will leave us all in. I'd rather giggle about custard pies.

Tollund Wed 20-Jul-11 17:34:02

Same with the famine...

MsPlaced Wed 20-Jul-11 17:34:14

You don't want to talk about the Euro, its beyond dull. and isn't going anywhere anyway, so dull and pointless. The front pages should be about the famine in E Africa.

pjani Wed 20-Jul-11 17:35:14

Excellent point - YANBU!

Also the brinkmanship in America over their debt threshold is pretty interesting/scary, I'd happily read more about it (found Gary Younge's article in the Guardian good but there hasn't been that much else).

LemonDifficult Wed 20-Jul-11 17:37:07

If we had joined the Euro would the hacking scandal even have happened? News Cycle Nightmare

Riveninside Wed 20-Jul-11 17:38:01

Can you explian the euro problem in easy to understand terms. I read but Im not getting it

LemonDifficult Wed 20-Jul-11 18:33:16

The Greeks are in debt from massive overspending. They can't afford the repayment on the debt they have with banks etc. so may default- not pay the repayments - leaving chaos in the financial sector.

Normally, a government would be able to devalue their currency and do other financial fannying to make their debt cheaper but because they are in the Euro this option isn't open to Greece.

The European Bank has offered another loan to meet the debts but only if the Greeks cut down their debt themselves as well. This can be done by tightening the amount spent by the Greek government on the Greek people/hospitals/jobs/lives in general. The Greeks don't like this plan (the Germans do, sort of, and they're paying the loan). The Greek people might quite like to be out of the Euro now - and have a cheap currency meaning people will holiday there and foreign buyers will choose Greek stuff over, say, German stuff because Greek stuff is cheaper, thus boosting tourism and exports. But this would mean disaster for the rest of the Eurozone and the fear that lots of other nations will leave (Spain, Italy, Ireland, Portugal) will leave, and total chaos ensue as debts are just abandoned or cheapened.

UK banks aren't in it for very much with Greece, but if anything happens to Italy I read UK banks are exposed to £40 Billion. And that'll just be the start. Europe is our biggest trading destination. If they haven't got the money to buy, we don't have customers.

LemonDifficult Thu 21-Jul-11 12:41:24

Finally! BBC Euro headline and not a Hack story to be seen.

CogitoErgoSometimes Thu 21-Jul-11 13:28:40

YANBU But it would probably help if the average person had the slightest clue what was going on with the Euro, let alone how to fix it & let alone what might happen if it didn't get fixed. Because, right now, even the clever people in Brussels are engaged in a collective strategy that could be summed up as 'smile and wave, boys'.

(Whereas hacking dead children etc is the ultimate judgy-pant story that we can all get sniffily self-righteous about. a.k.a. MN Nectar)

AmaraDresden Thu 21-Jul-11 13:39:04

What can be done about it? It sounds like it'll have a terrible effect all over Europe but how can they sort it out? And how did this be permitted to happen that Greece could cause so many difficulties?

I'm a bit embarrassed to admit I try not to worry about this too much as I struggle to grasp anything financial. Thanks for clearing some of it up for me though.

wicketkeeper Thu 21-Jul-11 13:39:14

Lemon - I am totally with you on this one. We lived in the Eurozone until recently (one of the PIGS countries) and still have a bit of money over there - including our life insurance. I'm seriously panicked about the whole situation, and couldn't be less interested in who is throwing custard pies at old blokes (although I would be interested to know how he got it through security...). I know it's hard to understand, but that doesn't mean it isn't important - looks like we might be heading for another (and probably deeper) recession, surely that should make everyone wake up and take notice.

fgaaagh Thu 21-Jul-11 13:48:34

"but how can they sort it out? And how did this be permitted to happen that Greece could cause so many difficulties?"

This thread might give some background:

Small extract:

* The Athens Underground, built for the Olympics, has no barriers to entry or exit and works on a ticket validation system which few bother with.

* The average salary on Greek Railways is £60k.

* 600 professions including pastry chefs are allowed to retire at 50, on 95% of their previous salaries, due to the arduous nature of their work.

* Only 5,000 people in the country admit to receiving a salary of over £90k pa due to self-declaration of taxes.

* This is in spite of "studies" (unnamed) showing more than 60,000 greek homes have investments of over £1m.

* People are therefore saying they earn below the tax threshhold of £10k, even though they own second homes and boats.

* Allegedly there is a semi-official rate for bribing the tax collector if they find out.

* Greek shipping magnates are automatically exempt from tax.

* The government has resorted to using helicopters and Google earth to show where people add swimming pools and expensive extras to their property. People are using covers and camouflage to hide them.

* There is a big capital flight to tax havens (well that one must be true!)

* Greeks have been buying properties in London to hide their wealth.

* Greek schools have four times as many teachers as Finnish schools - the system rated best in Europe.

... although you should really read the thread as some of it is Daily Mail-esque exaggeration etc etc.

I do recall seeing stuff popping up a few weeks ago in the news / online on financial forums discussing the bailouts, and the general attitude of "let's throw more billions at Greece whislt they try to sort themselves out" seemed to be an accurate one.

The future is looking very scary if Italy goes the same way, for the reasons Lemon you outlined - I think it's been discussed a small bit online in the media, but there is a LOT more informal journalism to go on, it's shocking that something this significant for us all is being quite under-reported from what I can tell.

SirGin Thu 21-Jul-11 13:49:44

YABU smile

I think the hacking story is pretty massive ( as much as the Tories try to downplay it ) and it could potentially bring down the government. If the Tories are found to have used information gained via hacking about the Labour party pre-election the sh*t will really hit the fan.

The Euro is important too ( as is the dollar ) , but it shouldn't remove the hacking story from the news radar.

fgaaagh Thu 21-Jul-11 13:53:09

Also AmaraDresden, pjani's recommendation to look for Gary Younge's stuff on the Guardian sums up what's happening quite nicely I think, in an article where he's talking about the US debt ceiling being reached on August 2nd:

The US government will effectively run out of money. But it would go into default not because it can't pay its bills – like Greece – but because it won't.

Riveninside Thu 21-Jul-11 14:04:16

so lack of the Govt getting sufffiecnet revenues from tax equals meltdown shit.
Makes sense.

CogitoErgoSometimes Thu 21-Jul-11 14:05:30

@SirGin... If anyone was hacking anyone's phones pre election it was the odiously unprincipled Labour aide Damien McBride. He insisted that no-one else at No 10 knew what he was doing at the time..... hmm Him, Derek Draper, Alistair Campbell. All got to be under the microscope now.

LemonDifficult Thu 21-Jul-11 14:10:49

SirGin, the government won't be brought down by the hacking story as the vast majority will understand that we cannot have an election and a financial crisis at the same time.

I'm fairly sure that neither I nor any of my immediate circle of friends, family, and acquaintances have not had our phones hacked, but there's a strong likelihood that we'll be affected by whatever happens next in the Euro drama.

CogitoErgoSometimes Thu 21-Jul-11 14:17:01

The Euro/£ exchange rate seems to be holding up remarkably well. Why would that be?

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