Electorates weigh up options as tide turns on austerity

Economic policies in the eurozone intended to aid recovery could well be overtaken by political events over the next month, writes Jon Ihle.

28th April, 2012
Electorates weigh up options as tide turns on austerity
Angela Merkel, German chancellor, and Nicolas Sarkozy, French president: there is trouble ahead for the fiscal treaty if François Hollande succeeds Sarkozy president of France. Photo: Getty

Political risk is emerging as a key factor driving behaviour in the financial markets, forcing European policy makers to rethink their approach to the economic crisis as an austerity backlash and a double-dip recession threaten reform programmes intended to aid recovery.

The next month is likely to prove critical for the eurozone as Ireland votes on the fiscal compact and France and Greece go to the polls amid escalating tensions over the capacity of Spain...

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