Debt Crisis

2:03pm

Tue April 17, 2012
Europe

Spain Scrambles To Avoid A Financial Bailout

Originally published on Wed April 18, 2012 3:54 pm

A broker sits in the stock exchange in Madrid. Worries about Spain's finances intensified last week as the country's bond yields rose on international markets, making it more expensive for Spain to borrow money.
Paul White AP

Spain's Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy visited Poland last week and tried to assure international markets that Spain would not join the list of European nations needing a bailout.

"Spain will not be rescued," he said at a news conference. "It's not possible to rescue Spain. There's no intention of it, and we don't need it."

However, Spain's borrowing costs are nearing levels that were followed by bailouts for Greece, Ireland and Portugal.

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2:27pm

Fri April 13, 2012
Europe

Tough Cuts In Portugal May Be Exacting High Toll

Retiree Alfredo Silva, 67, wore a skeleton costume to an anti-austerity protest in Lisbon, Portugal, last month.
Lauren Frayer for NPR

After a financial bailout earlier this year, fees in Portugal's health system have risen substantially. As a result, nongovernmental organizations say, the poor and elderly in Western Europe's poorest country can no longer afford essential care. Some Portuguese fear that austerity measures are threatening not only their livelihoods, but their lives.

Alfredo Silva, 67, showed up at an anti-austerity protest in Lisbon last month dressed as a skeleton. He says the costume shows the effect of Portugal's $100 billion bailout on retirees like him.

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1:28pm

Mon April 9, 2012
Europe

Lack Of Graduates Hampers Portugal's Recovery

A group of young Portuguese protest at Lisbon's Rossio square last month to vent their frustration at grim career prospects amid an acute economic crisis that shows no signs of abating.
Armando Franca AP

As Portugal tries to dig out of its financial mess, it's confronted with a sobering fact: Fewer than 30 percent of adult Portuguese have graduated from high school. Not college. High school.

And in a country that's been hit so hard by the economic crisis, even those with an education are struggling.

Ana Dias and Ruth Cardozo, both 27, are lifelong friends who now work together at a shoe store in Lisbon, the Portuguese capital. Cardozo dropped out of high school 10 years ago to take this job.

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5:05am

Thu April 5, 2012
The Two-Way

In Greece, Retiree's Suicide Sparks Protests And Clashes With Police

Demonstrators clashed with riot police in Athens overnight.
Aris Messinis AFP/Getty Images

The human toll from the financial crisis in Greece now has a human face.

After 77-year-old retired pharmacist Dimitris Christoulas killed himself Wednesday outside the parliament building in Athens, a suicide note he left was reported to say that he felt he must take a "dignified end to my life" because austerity measures and "annihilated all traces for my survival," particularly his pension.

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2:00am

Thu April 5, 2012
Business

Bond Auction Indicates Europe's Troubles Persist

A Spanish bond auction went poorly Wednesday, suggesting that Spain may be becoming the next Greece. It was the first auction without a lot of help from the European central bank.

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