European Economy on the Brink
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Investors, banks, speculators and national economies around the world are still watching Europe after yesterday's thirteenth summit in 21 months delayed action at least until a fourteenth summit on Wednesday. We hear about efforts to save the Euro and avoid another worldwide recession. Also, underwater homeowners get a boost, and WikiLeaks, the scourge of government secrecy, faces a financial blockade from financial companies that won't process contributions. Can it survive?
Banner image: Precarious towers of one Euro coins. World finance leaders are scheduled to meet again on Wednesday to discuss measures on how to counter the growing European debt crisis. Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images
Underwater Homeowners Get a Boost ()
The so-called Home Affordable Refinance Program was expected to help some five million owners when it was started in 2009, but it's only reached about 800,000. Today in Las Vegas, President Obama was expected to tell distressed homeowners about an expansion to HARP to allow more underwater mortgages to be refinanced. George Condon is White House Correspondent for the National Journal.
Can the Leaders of Europe Save the Euro? ()
Yesterday's summit of European leaders put off action until Wednesday, another delay in a financial crisis that's beginning to sound like 2008. The possibility of so-called "contagion" goes like this: Greece is on the verge of default, and austerity measures have led to rioting in the streets. If Greece fails, private investors could lose faith in Spain, Italy and, possibly, even France, with US lenders potentially next in line. Nobody really knows the extent of the danger. Will the Euro, designed to stabilize the continent, require that it break apart?
- Nick Malkoutzis: Kathimerini, @NickMalkoutzis
- Peter Spiegel: Financial Times, @SpiegelPeter
- Karsten Voigt: German Council on Foreign Relations
- Matthew Lynn: Strategy Economics
WikiLeaks Suspends Operations Due to Bank Blockade ()
The last time WikiLeaks made a splash was in April, when it released a trove of US government documents about prisoners at Guantanamo Bay. Today in London, Julian Assange said a financial blockade poses an existential threat to the organization, which has specialized in revealing classified information since it was launched in 2006. Today WikiLeaks suspended all publication and said it might go out of business by the end of this year. Paul Sonne reports from London for the Wall Street Journal.
- Paul Sonne: Wall Street Journal
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