The Spanish Economy

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This topic contains 105 replies, has 16 voices, and was last updated by Profile photo of DBMarcos99 DBMarcos99 3 years, 5 months ago.

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  • #56813
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    Quite an interesting view-point from a guirui with plenty of business experience in Spain:

    http://english.martinvarsavsky.net/general/the-spanish-crisis-is-a-crisis-of-understanding-of-how-wealth-is-created.html

  • #108612
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    logan
    Participant

    I agree with the opinions in that article, it’s another way of saying the Spanish workers think the world owes them a living. It could equally apply to France. Wealth creators and risk takers are seen in Europe now as villains, the workers innocent hard done to saints.

    It’s not the complaining, grumpy socialists who will lead Europe back to prosperity. It’s not taxing and regulating an economy to death that will create a single productive and secure job.

    I do fear that the politics of Europe is now polarising. Extremists such as Marine Le Pen and Wilders are gaining strength. It’s inevitable in troubled economic times.

    Hollande will turn France back to the left and turn back the clock, creating more useless public sector employment and enforcing the 35 hour week.

    Spain has a great deal more pain to follow until it’s work force realise, shock horror, they actually have to get off their backsides and work hard for a living.

  • #108614
    Profile photo of Chopera
    Chopera
    Participant

    He’s the guy who has started up Fon (I mentioned them in the “Spanish opportunities” thread). He has a point – although I think these “cultural” issues can change quickly with government encouragement. If the Spanish government can encourage people to make money for themselves, take the risks and then take the rewards, then people will go for it. But as things stand Hacienda takes the attitude that anybody running a successful business is a target for revenue and red tape, something to be controlled, so nobody bothers. Similarly someone who dares to employ someone full time becomes a potential oppressor of the workforce, so the Spanish government makes it prohibitively expensive to make people redundant, so fewer people get recruited in the first place.

  • #108615
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    I believe this lack of business understanding and entrepreneurship is a legacy from previous times, the years of rigid economic controls and an inward-looking culture.

    There is some debate on it, but if entrepreneurial skills are learned, rather than inherent, then it could be a generation before the mindset changes.

    The new information age could be the catalyst, opening up the world and its possibilities to the next generation of Spaniards.

  • #108616
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    “I agree with the opinions in that article, it’s another way of saying the Spanish workers think the world owes them a living. It could equally apply to France”.

    Agree 100%. You just have to speak to the people who are employed by the state. This is why the young people wants to work for the state. Hardly an endorsement of the youth & their energy to be burried under paper & rubber stamping.

    ” Wealth creators and risk takers are seen in Europe now as villains,”

    They have always been seen as one. As a result rules, regulations all & sundry are set up to deter wealth creators and all other matters around them. This is also one of the reasons that the corruption is so high. The risk takers are well aware that their instincts have to be short lived and as such get the best rewards legitimate or no not in the shortest possible time.

    “the workers innocent hard done to saints.”
    This has always been the case. At present it is more transparent.

    “It’s not the complaining, grumpy socialists who will lead Europe back to prosperity.”

    They live off the wealth created by the others & the policies of the non socialists.

    ” It’s not taxing and regulating an economy to death that will create a single productive and secure job”

    It creates jobs & that is all they care. Wheter the jobs are sustainable, productive & adds to the GDP of the Country is not how they see it.

    ” I do fear that the politics of Europe is now polarising. Extremists such as Marine Le Pen and Wilders are gaining strength. It’s inevitable in troubled economic times”

    Indeed. Immigrations takes all the flack. What they dont tell the people that the jobs the immigrant do the locals will not do it. If the present crises was not here EU needed 2.4million people to sustain its pre crises growth. As the birth rate has fallen in EU & continue to do so. Where is the work force going to come from when the economy recovers.

    “Hollande will turn France back to the left and turn back the clock, creating more useless public sector employment and enforcing the 35 hour week.”

    Knowing the French & that the world owes them a living becase they are French while continue their long lunches etc. My instincts are with you.

    “Spain has a great deal more pain to follow until it’s work force realise, shock horror, they actually have to get off their backsides and work hard for a living”

    This will not happen. As Spaniards will lower their standrard of living and carry on with the copa & fiesta mentality. If questioned their stock answer of ” mala suerte” !!!!

  • #108617
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    Perhaps this may be the solution for those educated young unemployed:
    http://ibnlive.in.com/news/spanish-youth-urged-to-seek-work-abroad/254258-70.html

  • #108619
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    katy
    Spectator

    I fail to see why the spanish work ethic should be blamed for the present debacle. 😕

  • #108621
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    If they work like they do in our town around the rest of Spain then I can understand it.

    Stop work, even if there are customers etc. at 10.30am to have ‘breakfast’ at a local bar. Nice if you are getting paid to do it.

    Go back to work, ignore customers and then leave on the dot of 2pm. Very nice if you can get it, most can’t now though.

    I think that here in Spain what they do really need are trustworthy, patient and well spoken native english teachers. All the parents I know are desperate for their children to get into the bilingual courses and want native english teachers to help their children learn as much as they can.

    It’s hard work for little pay to do private lessons but every little helps (to copy Tesco’s quote). Those who are staying here could look into local schools who need native english teachers (degree needed though) as here in Andalucia the Junta has a fund to pay for a native person to help out with the lessons (700 euros per month I believe?). They often get American students so come on you Brits, get your names down on the lists!

    Ask the school directors rather than the english teachers as they understandably are starting to be a bit wary of those who speak, read and write better than they do without the teacher training degree and a month in Dublin learning english….. obviously very worried about their job security.

    Obviously this would help local native Brits but it also helps the spanish community by teaching them ‘proper’ english to possibly enable them to get a job abroad. ?

  • #108622
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    @katy wrote:

    I fail to see why the spanish work ethic should be blamed for the present debacle. 😕

    No I agree they are not to blame but an new attitude is now required to survive, find and keep a job. I thinks that’s the point.

  • #108623
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    The problem is that like many used to work in Spain a few years back is not sustainable in the long run. I’m not talking about private business working under normal market conditions. Bank personel starting at 9am and working to around 2pm is so out of touch to reality and I tried to tell my relatives that. It’s a little bit like peeing in your pants, it might be warm and nice in the beginning but in the end it will turn out not to be such a wise decision. In the end the country will loose out jobs to other countries.

    Spaniards of old are a very hard working people but the get rich quick decades in Spain almost managed to spoil two generations of people. I could never manage to work with their old school farming methods they used up until recently. Beating trees with stick to get the almonds down in a very tough climate is not what I would call lazy.

  • #108624
    Profile photo of Chopera
    Chopera
    Participant

    @itsme wrote:

    If they work like they do in our town around the rest of Spain then I can understand it.

    Stop work, even if there are customers etc. at 10.30am to have ‘breakfast’ at a local bar. Nice if you are getting paid to do it.

    Go back to work, ignore customers and then leave on the dot of 2pm. Very nice if you can get it, most can’t now though.

    I think that here in Spain what they do really need are trustworthy, patient and well spoken native english teachers. All the parents I know are desperate for their children to get into the bilingual courses and want native english teachers to help their children learn as much as they can.

    It’s hard work for little pay to do private lessons but every little helps (to copy Tesco’s quote). Those who are staying here could look into local schools who need native english teachers (degree needed though) as here in Andalucia the Junta has a fund to pay for a native person to help out with the lessons (700 euros per month I believe?). They often get American students so come on you Brits, get your names down on the lists!

    Ask the school directors rather than the english teachers as they understandably are starting to be a bit wary of those who speak, read and write better than they do without the teacher training degree and a month in Dublin learning english….. obviously very worried about their job security.

    Obviously this would help local native Brits but it also helps the spanish community by teaching them ‘proper’ english to possibly enable them to get a job abroad. ?

    Is it still the case that only civil servants can become public school teachers in Spain? I’ve heard they’re trying to change it, but nothing more than that.

  • #108625
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    I don’t know about that? My neighbour is a teacher at the local college and asked if I would consider the job but then when I said that I had only lasted one year at Uni they said I couldn’t take the job (boo! Stupid me for dropping out to work in ‘media’ in London then…).

    The role I mention is as a kind of support teacher to help with the english classes. I think that full time teachers earn about 2k a month here, plus extra pay twice a year??

    Here in my town most of the bank workers used to be solicitors (but guess they make more money now at the banks, or were quick enough to suss out where they could con their customers??)

  • #108626
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    “Stop work, even if there are customers etc. at 10.30am to have ‘breakfast’ at a local bar.”

    ” Go back to work, ignore customers and then leave on the dot of 2pm “

    Not to mention that they do not arrive for work on the dot !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Their delay means that customers plans for the day are messed up.

  • #108627
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    Spanish work ethics may not be blamed for the current crises. The issue is much bigger & it has to do with the mentality & their thinking.

    It should not have taken them long to realise that no sector of any economy can go on forever. Spaniards should have known this and planned ahead, living for the day, work shy, try & get away with as little work as possible, lack of care & pride in the work produced, desire to improve & educate oneself, time keeping, taking responsibilty.

    If I am a multi national and I have an option to invest in Poland or Spain. I will not be investing in Spain for reasons stated above. (not to mention labour laws, unions. This of course has nothing to do with the employees )

  • #108628
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    Shakeel, mentality cannot be changed!! …………..

  • #108629
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    @shakeel wrote:

    If I am a multi national and I have an option to invest in Poland or Spain. I will not be investing in Spain for reasons stated above. (not to mention labour laws, unions. This of course has nothing to do with the employees )

    Investors take many differing factors before moving to a particular country. The mentality of the workforce being of some consideration.
    However more importantly are the particular labour laws, level of union activism and production costs.

    It’s for these reasons multi nationals are moving in droves to Asia and the far east particularly China. China is now seen as relatively politically stable with a focused low cost work force.

    How can Spain and the Eurozone countries complete? The answer is by producing high quality goods which will sell well in the global market place. Germany has worked that out and so has the USA. Apple products are all manufactured in China but with US know how and expertise.

    Where Spain fits into that particular scenario I have no idea and neither do the Spanish.

    That said, I’m interested in alternative energy investment and Spain has the potential to be a world leader in that field if they could ever get their act together. 🙁

  • #108630
    Profile photo of Chopera
    Chopera
    Participant

    @itsme wrote:

    I don’t know about that? My neighbour is a teacher at the local college and asked if I would consider the job but then when I said that I had only lasted one year at Uni they said I couldn’t take the job (boo! Stupid me for dropping out to work in ‘media’ in London then…).

    The role I mention is as a kind of support teacher to help with the english classes. I think that full time teachers earn about 2k a month here, plus extra pay twice a year??

    It has always been the case before, but I heard they were trying to change it. It’s another example of Spanish government getting in the way, this time in the way of children’s education, by making it very difficult for foreigners (including those from the EU) to teach in public schools: they have to get Spanish citizenship (which includes renouncing their existing citizenship) and do civil service exams. It partly explains why the Spanish are so behind with foreign languages – they could only be taught by Spanish teachers who lacked native fluency.

    There is a strong push for bilingual public schools in Madrid as well, and they have got round the problem by contracting native English teaching assistants with the British Council, but the teacher must still be Spanish and they’re not required to have a particularly high level of English to be allowed to teach in English. It’s better than nothing though.

    The 14 month pay occurs in the private sector as well (I once had it) – it’s basically a way of paying a bonus twice a year, and encourages people to stay in their job a bit longer.

    @itsme wrote:

    Here in my town most of the bank workers used to be solicitors (but guess they make more money now at the banks, or were quick enough to suss out where they could con their customers??)

    My wife has a degree in law from a Spanish uni and a Masters in law from a UK university. But to get work as a lawyer or solicitor people generally start off as an intern being paid nothing for a year or two, with no guarantee of full paid employment at the end. So she, like many lawyers, went to work for a bank instead. For some reason bank employees have strong convenios (agreements with the unions) that mean bank employees get more rights.

  • #108631
    Profile photo of Chopera
    Chopera
    Participant

    @logan wrote:


    How can Spain and the Eurozone countries complete? The answer is by producing high quality goods which will sell well in the global market place. Germany has worked that out and so has the USA. Apple products are all manufactured in China but with US know how and expertise.

    Surprisingly I believe a lot of the iPhone is designed by UK companies (the main processors are designed by ARM, the audio chips by Wolfson, and the bluetooth system by CSR)

  • #108633
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    Agreed Chopera but it was designed in Silicon Valley and the parts commissioned to Steve Jobs blue print. Perhaps Apple was a poor example of my point because they are exceptional as a company, a one off.

    Has Spain ever bothered to develop their own Silicon Valley? If not why not?

    For Spain to compete in manufacturing in today’s global economy they need talented entrepreneurs with flair and energy. Most of them simply go abroad where the opportunities are better and talent recognized and encouraged.

    Spain also needs to develop a stronger financial services industry. Most Spanish simply don’t understand it or recognise it’s industrial potential.

    I talk to Spanish businessmen all the time and I am struck how insular they are in outlook. That needs to change.

  • #108636
    Profile photo of Chopera
    Chopera
    Participant

    @logan wrote:

    Agreed Chopera but it was designed in Silicon Valley and the parts commissioned to Steve Jobs blue print. Perhaps Apple was a poor example of my point because they are exceptional as a company, a one off.

    Has Spain ever bothered to develop their own Silicon Valley? If not why not?

    For Spain to compete in manufacturing in today’s global economy they need talented entrepreneurs with flair and energy. Most of them simply go abroad where the opportunities are better and talent recognized and encouraged.

    Spain also needs to develop a stronger financial services industry. Most Spanish simply don’t understand it or recognise it’s industrial potential.

    I talk to Spanish businessmen all the time and I am struck how insular they are in outlook. That needs to change.

    I think Apple was a good example and I agree with your points. I was just pointing the UK input to the iphone as an aside. It also makes me smile that the main iphone processors are manufactured by Apple’s main rival – Samsung.

    Spain needs government investment in the right areas, and it doesn’t look like they’re going to get it while they remain in the euro. Maybe things’ll change after the French elections this weekend.

  • #108638
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    peterhun
    Participant

    @logan wrote:

    It’s for these reasons multi nationals are moving in droves to Asia and the far east particularly China. China is now seen as relatively politically stable with a focused low cost work force.
    (

    Thats an out of date viewpoint, in my opinion.

    China is not a good place to do business anymore, costs have gone up and companies are looking at moving production closer to market. USA is getting new jobs and the Chinese are looking at setting up in Poland.

    Agreed Chopera but it was designed in Silicon Valley and the parts commissioned to Steve Jobs blue print. Perhaps Apple was a poor example of my point because they are exceptional as a company, a one off.

    Has Spain ever bothered to develop their own Silicon Valley? If not why not?

    The designer of all Apple products is British and the processor – the very thing that makes the iPhone/iPad possible – is British. No country (or city) has every setup a successful alternative to Silicon Vally, but modern technology development doesn’t come from there anymore.

  • #108683
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    Regional political control of the cajas is a big part of the problem:
    http://uk.reuters.com/article/2012/05/06/uk-bankia-idUKBRE84504K20120506

  • #108684
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    Here in Barcelona, I can usually see a few bank branches wherever I am in the city. It’s a similar story all over Spain.

    You would think that internet banking didn’t exist, and that Spain was like Switzerland, with a massive amount of the world’s deposits / savings to manage.

    As it is, Spain has a massive savings deficit, has had for many years, and you see far fewer bank branches in Switzerland.

    It’s completely insane, and very expensive.

    I bet Spain has one of the highest ratios of bank offices per capita in the world.

    And guess whose’s paying the bill to keep these bloated branch networks open?

  • #108685
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    I very much agree Mark.
    France is a wealthier country and is a nation of savers but they have far fewer savings banks. Caja’s are just politicos personal tool in the manipulation of regional power.

    I like this quote especially since my bank in Spain tried to pursude me to buy these shares. 😆 :

    Bankia managed to force through an initial public offering in July as part of government demands for unlisted regional savings banks to take on private capital, although it had to price its shares at a 60 percent discount to book value.

    More than half of the issue was sold to retail investors, following a wide-ranging newspaper and television campaign urging Spaniards to invest in the “best of the new banks”.

    Institutional investors were overwhelmingly domestic, with many banks buying shares as it became apparent the listing had become a touchstone for faith in Spain’s banking system.

    Despite the deep discount, the stock has lost about a third of its value since flotation.

    “We were aware we risked losing over half of our investment, and that is exactly what is happening,” said one Spanish banking source who bought shares in the initial public offering and spoke on condition of anonymity.

    “The IPO went ahead because of national interest and every Spanish bank that bought shares did so knowing that there were problems of viability and that the share did not have much room to climb.”

    Such self-sacrifice may be laudable but it also points to a weakness. The deep ties between Spain’s savings banks and regional politics mean authorities have gone through three bank reforms in as many years and lost credibility within Europe rather than shut down weak performers.

    “The public sector has some rotten banks, but cannot close them. Why not? Because local politicians would not tolerate it,” said Javier Diaz-Gimenez, economics professor at IESE Business School. “It would mean a loss of power for them.”

  • #108687
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    @mark wrote:

    Here in Barcelona, I can usually see a few bank branches wherever I am in the city. It’s a similar story all over Spain.

    You would think that internet banking didn’t exist, and that Spain was like Switzerland, with a massive amount of the world’s deposits / savings to manage.

    As it is, Spain has a massive savings deficit, has had for many years, and you see far fewer bank branches in Switzerland.

    It’s completely insane, and very expensive.

    I bet Spain has one of the highest ratios of bank offices per capita in the world.

    And guess whose’s paying the bill to keep these bloated branch networks open?

    I was also very suprised to this when I arrived in Spain. They have really nice benefits also.

  • #108692
    Profile photo of Chopera
    Chopera
    Participant

    I suspect labour laws have also played a part in the ridiculous number of branches. Usually if a bank takes over or merges with another bank, they get rid of workers with duplicate jobs. But the bank workers have very strong unions and rights, making it very expensive to lay them off. So they keep all the branches open and everybody employed. The worst cases I have seen are with BBVA (which is a merger of 3 or 4 banks) in Madrid you often see two BBVA branches within a dozen or so metres of each other.

  • #108722
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    katy
    Spectator

    S&P has downgraded 9 spanish regions since downgrading the banks. Valencia’s debt is now virtually “useless”

  • #108724
    Profile photo of Chopera
    Chopera
    Participant

    Further to the Reuters article Mark posted above, it looks like Bankia is now getting a bailout and Rodrigo Rato has resigned.

    (The article is on the FT’s home page)

  • #108730
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    logan
    Participant

    Rajoy’s bail out of Bankia is said to amount to between €7bn to €10bn. Typically in Spain the bank is maintaining secrecy and will not confirm the amount. Most banking analysts suspect the figure will fall short of what’s required to stabilise the group, formed in 2010 from a number of bankrupt Caja’s including Caja Madrid..

    Rodrigo Rato’s head was no doubt demanded because of his political ties to the ruling PP government who seek to appear squeaky clean.

    The real question is what is actually required to stabilise the whole banking sector in Spain. Most estimates range from €70bn to €100bn. I doubt the Frobe is financially capable of that at the moment.

    Here’s a quote from the FT report and said by a Spanish banking advisor to the government.

    “Just injecting capital would be the equivalent of rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic,” the person said. “I think Spain has not admitted to itself just how weak some of its banks actually are and how serious the situation is.”

    I could not have put it better myself.

  • #108735
    Profile photo of Chopera
    Chopera
    Participant

    I caught a bit of a discussion about Bankia on Spanish TV last night. General feeling was that it would have been so much cheaper if they had done this 3 years ago, and that they’re still not doing it properly now. I expect that Spanish debt clock on the other thread to go into warp speed over the next few months.

  • #108739
    Profile photo of GarySFBCN
    GarySFBCN
    Participant

    I bet Spain has one of the highest ratios of bank offices per capita in the world.

    And yet to get services in a bank in Barcelona, one has to wait, wait, wait…

  • #108740
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    That Gary is the Spanish national pastime, waiting for mañana and Godot. 🙂

  • #108749
    Profile photo of Chris McCarthy
    Chris McCarthy
    Participant

    @logan wrote:

    Spain has a great deal more pain to follow until it’s work force realise, shock horror, they actually have to get off their backsides and work hard for a living.

    I think this is a bit harsh.

    How many people are sitting on their backsides in the UK? How many people are receiving Housing Benefit, Job Seekers Allowance, Child Benefit? How many of them have Plasmas, Sky TV and X boxes in their living room and may not only have not worked in the past couple of years but in many cases decades?

    Spanish people don’t have this outstanding benefit system when their Paro has expired, they have nothing and no option but to get off their backsides or use up their own savings or rely upon family. If you ask me, better to look at whole benefit culture in the UK rather than have a pop at genuinely suffering Spanish worker.

    I have no love of the Spanish labour laws, and plenty to say about how they negatively impact upon business growth or development, but I don’t think you can blame that on the Spanish work force really.

    As an employer, entrepreneur, investor whatever Logan, don’t you think Spain has a far better system than the UK, no work – no pay. As business people, given that people desperately need work and want to do well, maybe it is up to us to work within the system and make it work for us. But lets not knock the man on the street who is unemployed, before we take a good look at ourselves.

  • #108750
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    Chris I do understand your point and maybe my statement was a tad harsh.
    However I write from experience. I have been an employer of labour in Spain as well as France and the UK.
    In Spain workers will not take any responsibility for the standard of work they do. Their attitude is if it’s wrong then it’s the supervisor/managers fault for not checking it. They seek to do the minimum within their pay grade and don’t ever expect any initiative.

    The system is very hierarchical the attitude is the next person up the line is the one who always takes the decisions and carries the responsibility because they get more pay. An attitude of ‘Not me Gov’ prevails in the culture. The average Spanish worker is fine if you tell him what to do and leave him the whole day or week to do it. Ask anything more and they are stuffed.

    Employing people in Europe is incredibly expensive and therefore value is essential. It’s very hard to find. If you can get it hold on to it as hard as you can.

    It’s been a while, to be fair since I was an active employer but I don’t believe the culture has changed significantly.

  • #108751
    Profile photo of Chris McCarthy
    Chris McCarthy
    Participant

    @logan wrote:

    Chris I do understand your point and maybe my statement was a tad harsh.

    The system is very hierarchical the attitude is the next person up the line is the one who always takes the decisions and carries the responsibility because they get more pay. An attitude of ‘Not me Gov’ prevails in the culture. The average Spanish worker is fine if you tell him what to do and leave him the whole day or week to do it. Ask anything more and they are stuffed.

    It’s been a while, to be fair since I was an active employer but I don’t believe the culture has changed significantly.

    Yep I get that you perhaps didn’t mean it as it sounded. I know you are always even handed in that regard normally.

    I think attitudes have changed a good bit though, and it also depends on the businesses today acting in a positive, motivational and proactive way I think.

    The system is what it is, we have to accept it and get on with it, I work today with some fabulously committed staff on contract and on autonomo, I have worked with 100’s over the years and I haven’t encountered anything other than a terrific support for the business, from pretty much every single person.

    And, I just can’t see how the UK can blithely and meekly submit to paying literally millions of people to sit at home and see Spain getting knocked when it just doesn’t do that and working people pay a high price for that.

    Again, the system is what it is, I think this desperate recession will make employees perhaps think twice in the future when they get a job about their attitude, and as for those currently in employment, well they know how lucky they are, and often they are supporting at least one or two family members who are not so lucky. They are doing it however – not the state as in the UK.

    Am struggling to think which is better on that basis – the UK or Spain?

  • #108752
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    @Chris McCarthy wrote:

    Am struggling to think which is better on that basis – the UK or Spain?

    With a welfare safety net providing solely for those in genuine need, the UK system is better.

    With a welfare safety net providing for those in genuine need, as well as huge numbers of genuinely work-shy, I’m really not so sure.

  • #108753
    Profile photo of DBMarcos99
    DBMarcos99
    Participant

    @Chris McCarthy wrote:

    @logan wrote:
    Chris I do understand your point and maybe my statement was a tad harsh.

    The system is very hierarchical the attitude is the next person up the line is the one who always takes the decisions and carries the responsibility because they get more pay. An attitude of ‘Not me Gov’ prevails in the culture. The average Spanish worker is fine if you tell him what to do and leave him the whole day or week to do it. Ask anything more and they are stuffed.

    It’s been a while, to be fair since I was an active employer but I don’t believe the culture has changed significantly.

    Yep I get that you perhaps didn’t mean it as it sounded. I know you are always even handed in that regard normally.

    I think attitudes have changed a good bit though, and it also depends on the businesses today acting in a positive, motivational and proactive way I think.

    The system is what it is, we have to accept it and get on with it, I work today with some fabulously committed staff on contract and on autonomo, I have worked with 100’s over the years and I haven’t encountered anything other than a terrific support for the business, from pretty much every single person.

    And, I just can’t see how the UK can blithely and meekly submit to paying literally millions of people to sit at home and see Spain getting knocked when it just doesn’t do that and working people pay a high price for that.

    Again, the system is what it is, I think this desperate recession will make employees perhaps think twice in the future when they get a job about their attitude, and as for those currently in employment, well they know how lucky they are, and often they are supporting at least one or two family members who are not so lucky. They are doing it however – not the state as in the UK.

    Am struggling to think which is better on that basis – the UK or Spain?

    The cards may be stacked against the Spanish workforce and economy (Euro crisis, international press, speculators) but it seems their performance as regards exports and performance in the last few years has actually been exceptional.

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-05-09/spain-s-stealth-devaluation-goes-unrewarded-by-investors.html

    The current account deficit, which was 10 percent of gross domestic product at the height of the boom in 2007, will decline to 0.9 percent this year and flip to a surplus in 2013, the government forecasts. Productivity gains outpaced the euro- region average in each of the three years through 2011, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development data show.

    “Exports performed quite well last year, as a result of a gain in competitiveness,” said Ricardo Santos, a European economist at BNP Paribas SA in London. “Spain is around half way” through the correction it needs to make in competitiveness, he said.

  • #108754
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    I have seen some evidence of deflation in Spain recently. It will make a difference eventually as long as the government don’t back off the much needed labour reforms when union opposition gets stronger.
    Deflation in the housing market has some way to go before it becomes competitive.
    Since deflating the currency is not an option prices and costs have to fall. That means much less income for those employed.

  • #108757
    Profile photo of GarySFBCN
    GarySFBCN
    Participant

    With a welfare safety net providing solely for those in genuine need, the UK system is better.

    With a welfare safety net providing for those in genuine need, as well as huge numbers of genuinely work-shy, I’m really not so sure.

    Comparing both public and private debt, and disregarding the unmeasurable ‘genuine need’ aspect of this, the UK is less prudent than the Spanish. Economists are going-off about the private debt crisis in Spain, which, as a percent of GDP, is less than half of that in the UK.

    And while there are a lot of problems in Spain, I do believe that the bashing of Spain is providing France, Germany and the UK with a convenient distraction to their own, unsustainable economies, economies that are, by many measures, worse than the Spanish economy.

  • #108758
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    @garysfbcn wrote:

    the UK is less prudent than the Spanish. Economists are going-off about the private debt crisis in Spain, which, as a percent of GDP, is less than half of that in the UK.
    .

    That may or may not be true Gary but the markets, particularly the bond markets, view things differently. Britain is now seen as an example of prudence and Sterling a safe haven.

    The OECD has announced the UK economy is set for a modest recovery in the second half of this year.
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/economics/9256957/UK-recovery-gathering-pace-as-world-economy-recovers-says-OECD.html

    Spain is slipping slowly into a much more prolonged recession. The underlying economic problems will just not go away on their own.

    Rajoy’s government I admit are taking many necessary measures but the constant tax hikes will be a counter measure to reforms and stimey growth.

  • #108784
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    http://rt.com/news/mass-protests-spain-madrid-118/

    Protests against the 1% for the 99%. 100 000 is a quite big number.

    No headlines in european medias because they don’t want the calm majority to be sucked into this and cause more problems. Interesting to see that such a corrupt society as Russia is the place to get your news about europe these days.

  • #108786
    Profile photo of GarySFBCN
    GarySFBCN
    Participant

    Actually, I saw in The Guardian, BBC, Business Week and many others. And, of course, Publico.es has the most extensive coverage.

    Here’s a list of press coverage from a Google search:

    http://news.google.com/news/story?q=spain&hl=en&nomo=1&gl=us&prmd=imvns&bav=on.2,or.r_gc.r_pw.r_qf.,cf.osb&biw=1252&bih=459&um=1&ie=UTF-8&ncl=do2ykuySUfc9ejMok9G0aFAWvMfLM&ei=GO6vT4m0D8ediQKc_KGsBA&sa=X&oi=news_result&ct=more-results&resnum=1&ved=0CC0QqgIwAA

  • #108787
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    @garysfbcn wrote:

    Actually, I saw in The Guardian, BBC, Business Week and many others. And, of course, Publico.es has the most extensive coverage.

    Here’s a list of press coverage from a Google search:

    http://news.google.com/news/story?q=spain&hl=en&nomo=1&gl=us&prmd=imvns&bav=on.2,or.r_gc.r_pw.r_qf.,cf.osb&biw=1252&bih=459&um=1&ie=UTF-8&ncl=do2ykuySUfc9ejMok9G0aFAWvMfLM&ei=GO6vT4m0D8ediQKc_KGsBA&sa=X&oi=news_result&ct=more-results&resnum=1&ved=0CC0QqgIwAA

    Probably only in my country then. =)

  • #108789
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    A couple of points on recent posts.

    The figures for debt as a percentage of GDP ignore the guarantees given by governments in respect of the various bail out arrangements and very significantly, in the case of Spain, domestic banks. Should those contingent liabilities turn into debt, the figures get much worse very quickly. The UK recognised and absorbed its domestic bank issues very early. Spain has still not done so, though recent activity makes it clear this is now imminent. Don’t forget the Spanish (and French) banks took the money from the last ECB bail out and used it to buy domestic bank debt, so this has elements of a very big Ponzi scheme.

    And secondly, as for deflation – I doubt it. As the The Economist would have it, the Germans have effectively waved the white flag and indicated they see average inflation across the EU of 2 to 3% as acceptable, which implies a higher figure than that in Germany. Inflation is what we are in for and as in the seventies it will rob the retired and the prudent to support the profligate.

    Falls in asset values are not material to the inflation/deflation equation. It is only the cost of occupying the property, whether by way of rent or mortgage repayment that counts.

    Normally real estate (remember the point of this forum) would be fine as an asset in this scenario, but not when that asset entered the period of inflation at an over value relative to other assets. We may well see further falls in the absolute value of property (though I suspect inflation will staunch the absolute falls soon) but that will not signal deflation. Keep your eye on the price of loaf of bread, not the price of a Madrid apartment.

  • #108790
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Costacraver http://www.usdebtclock.org/world-debt-clock.html am I right to conclude that if that would happen Spains public debt would go up to around 300%? Or is there something else I’m missing?

  • #108792
    Profile photo of Chopera
    Chopera
    Participant

    @logan wrote:

    @garysfbcn wrote:
    the UK is less prudent than the Spanish. Economists are going-off about the private debt crisis in Spain, which, as a percent of GDP, is less than half of that in the UK.
    .

    That may or may not be true Gary but the markets, particularly the bond markets, view things differently. Britain is now seen as an example of prudence and Sterling a safe haven.

    The OECD has announced the UK economy is set for a modest recovery in the second half of this year.
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/economics/9256957/UK-recovery-gathering-pace-as-world-economy-recovers-says-OECD.html

    Spain is slipping slowly into a much more prolonged recession. The underlying economic problems will just not go away on their own.

    Rajoy’s government I admit are taking many necessary measures but the constant tax hikes will be a counter measure to reforms and stimey growth.

    The bond markets don’t care about prudence, they care about whether they are going to get their money back. And (for reasons that are beyond me) the bond markets would rather get their money back in a currency that has devalued by 20% than take a 10% haircut in a currency that hasn’t devalued at all. Therefore the UK (especially with her long term debt that doesn’t have to be rolled over for a few years yet) wins (for now).

  • #108796
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Good question! Let me just clear the decks first. I read material in the Economist, FT and John Mauldin’s newsletter over the weekend and wrongly credited TE with the “white flag” metaphor – it was Mauldin.

    Calculating the number is way, way beyond me, so let me again credit Mauldin and as he is quite rightly protective of his IP, just say he credibly totals the guarantees and contingent liabilities at $600billion, equating to 130% debt/GDP.

    However, that doesn’t allow for either the direct cost of any Spanish bank bail outs which may be necessary or the continuing fiscal deficit. So, 300% sounds high to me, but certainly it would be double the current figure and rising. The trend is said to be important to the bond markets.

    Obviously the UK has absolutely no reason for complacency, but any any analysis that starts from the position our public debt position is twice as bad as Spain’s needs adjustment.

  • #108850
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Ibex-35 down another 1.5pc so far today, the fifth straight day of falls. This gets very unsustainable very quickly.

    Personally I’m expecting the ECB to intervene again, followed by a big stock market rally, that lasts a while. But sooner or later we’ll be back here again.

    There are huge losses in the system, and someone (the German saver) has to recognise them, either through default or inflation. We won’t get out of this mess any other way.

  • #109030
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Ibex-35 down another 1.5pc so far today, the fifth straight day of falls. This gets very unsustainable very quickly.

    Personally I’m expecting the ECB to intervene again, followed by a big stock market rally, that lasts a while. But sooner or later we’ll be back here again.

    There are huge losses in the system, and someone (the German saver) has to recognise them, either through default or inflation. We won’t get out of this mess any other way.

  • #108860
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    There are reports that Moodys will downgrade 21 Spanish banks at 7pm this evening…others say Monday.

  • #109050
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    There are reports that Moodys will downgrade 21 Spanish banks at 7pm this evening…others say Monday.

  • #108861
    Profile photo of Chris McCarthy
    Chris McCarthy
    Participant

    @katy wrote:

    There are reports that Moodys will downgrade 21 Spanish banks at 7pm this evening…others say Monday.

    I don’t want to be flippant but…

    Do we really care about what Moody’s, Standard & Poor, and Fitch have to say about anything anymore?

  • #109052
    Profile photo of Chris McCarthy
    Chris McCarthy
    Participant

    @katy wrote:

    There are reports that Moodys will downgrade 21 Spanish banks at 7pm this evening…others say Monday.

    I don’t want to be flippant but…

    Do we really care about what Moody’s, Standard & Poor, and Fitch have to say about anything anymore?

  • #108862
    Profile photo of angie
    angie
    Spectator

    Chris, as the storm clouds gather, what they have to say may be more relevant than ever if said as a collective, anyway it is only their opinion based on whatever info they’ve gathered.

    My interpretation:

    Moodys = the Eurozone Mood

    Standard and Poors = Current and Past Standards have left the Club Meds Poorer

    Fitch = Rhymes with Itch (only thing I could think of but probably leaves a lot of the Eurozone with serious Itching to move monies out 😆

    Sorry for the banter 😆

  • #109054
    Profile photo of angie
    angie
    Spectator

    Chris, as the storm clouds gather, what they have to say may be more relevant than ever if said as a collective, anyway it is only their opinion based on whatever info they’ve gathered.

    My interpretation:

    Moodys = the Eurozone Mood

    Standard and Poors = Current and Past Standards have left the Club Meds Poorer

    Fitch = Rhymes with Itch (only thing I could think of but probably leaves a lot of the Eurozone with serious Itching to move monies out 😆

    Sorry for the banter 😆

  • #108858
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    @Chris McCarthy wrote:

    @katy wrote:
    There are reports that Moodys will downgrade 21 Spanish banks at 7pm this evening…others say Monday.

    I don’t want to be flippant but…

    Do we really care about what Moody’s, Standard & Poor, and Fitch have to say about anything anymore?

    We may not care, Spain tries to rubbish them…well they would wouldn’t they :mrgreen: Fact is the financial markets and investors do and the borrowing costs will increase.

  • #109046
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    @Chris McCarthy wrote:

    @katy wrote:
    There are reports that Moodys will downgrade 21 Spanish banks at 7pm this evening…others say Monday.

    I don’t want to be flippant but…

    Do we really care about what Moody’s, Standard & Poor, and Fitch have to say about anything anymore?

    We may not care, Spain tries to rubbish them…well they would wouldn’t they :mrgreen: Fact is the financial markets and investors do and the borrowing costs will increase.

  • #109058
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    As Chris just mentioned. They are a big part of this problem so I’m not sure why people even care about what they have to say. People do care but nothing have really changed in the last 1-2 years. They give no insight into anything just stating the obvious.

  • #108864
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    As Chris just mentioned. They are a big part of this problem so I’m not sure why people even care about what they have to say. People do care but nothing have really changed in the last 1-2 years. They give no insight into anything just stating the obvious.

  • #109060
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    All eyes might be on Moody’s potential downgrade of the Spanish banking sector (see 13.13), but the ratings agency has just downgraded four Spanish regions – Andalucia, Extremadura, Catalunya and Murcia – the last two to “junk”.

    Well there you go…not that it makes any difference of course 🙄

  • #108865
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    All eyes might be on Moody’s potential downgrade of the Spanish banking sector (see 13.13), but the ratings agency has just downgraded four Spanish regions – Andalucia, Extremadura, Catalunya and Murcia – the last two to “junk”.

    Well there you go…not that it makes any difference of course 🙄

  • #109062
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Katy don’t get me wrong they are junk but it something that everyone has known for ages.

  • #108866
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Katy don’t get me wrong they are junk but it something that everyone has known for ages.

  • #109064
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Anyone with access to UK TV can watch Robert Peston’s programme about the Euro on BBC1 right now. Alarming through its sheer, understated commentary on how we got to where we are. Plenty on Spain.

  • #108867
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Anyone with access to UK TV can watch Robert Peston’s programme about the Euro on BBC1 right now. Alarming through its sheer, understated commentary on how we got to where we are. Plenty on Spain.

  • #109066
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator
  • #108868
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator
  • #109070
    Profile photo of peterhun
    peterhun
    Participant

    @Chris McCarthy wrote:

    @katy wrote:
    There are reports that Moodys will downgrade 21 Spanish banks at 7pm this evening…others say Monday.

    I don’t want to be flippant but…

    Do we really care about what Moody’s, Standard & Poor, and Fitch have to say about anything anymore?

    The banks will have to pay more to borrow, interest rates will go up and they will be able to lend less.

  • #108870
    Profile photo of peterhun
    peterhun
    Participant

    @Chris McCarthy wrote:

    @katy wrote:
    There are reports that Moodys will downgrade 21 Spanish banks at 7pm this evening…others say Monday.

    I don’t want to be flippant but…

    Do we really care about what Moody’s, Standard & Poor, and Fitch have to say about anything anymore?

    The banks will have to pay more to borrow, interest rates will go up and they will be able to lend less.

  • #109072
    Profile photo of angie
    angie
    Spectator

    Ardun, you say they might be a big part of the problem and you and Chris might not care, but a huge amount of people and markets do care it seems. Back to the problem, well it was the Banks themselves (greedy investment Bankers) who were the largest part of the problem, followed by poor regulators not doing their jobs, the Ratings Agencies can’t be blamed for the initial problems, anyone with half a brain could see this was going to happen when the likes of ‘Goldman Sucks’ were dishing out obscene bonuses for greed (even failure) over 10 years ago. I raised this point then but no-one even listened in the UK.

    The Agencies are simply stating the obvious in case anyone was still naive enough to think it wasn’t happening IMO 😆

    Back to the Eurozone, how was it really expected to work with so many cultures, tongues, balance of assets, different levels of corruption etc etc? 🙄

  • #108872
    Profile photo of angie
    angie
    Spectator

    Ardun, you say they might be a big part of the problem and you and Chris might not care, but a huge amount of people and markets do care it seems. Back to the problem, well it was the Banks themselves (greedy investment Bankers) who were the largest part of the problem, followed by poor regulators not doing their jobs, the Ratings Agencies can’t be blamed for the initial problems, anyone with half a brain could see this was going to happen when the likes of ‘Goldman Sucks’ were dishing out obscene bonuses for greed (even failure) over 10 years ago. I raised this point then but no-one even listened in the UK.

    The Agencies are simply stating the obvious in case anyone was still naive enough to think it wasn’t happening IMO 😆

    Back to the Eurozone, how was it really expected to work with so many cultures, tongues, balance of assets, different levels of corruption etc etc? 🙄

  • #109075
    Profile photo of zoro
    zoro
    Participant

    There is much debate about the competency of the ratings agencies, e.g. the sub prime mortgage saga, but their relevance is unquestionable.

    They matter because there are thousands of pension funds (and others) around the world with trillions of $/€/£ to invest and for safety’s sake, the vast majority of them will have strict rules about the quality of investments they are allowed to make. Often resticted to AAA.

    And, of course, it is the agencies who determine the quality of those investments.

    The fund managers can then breathe a sigh of relief in that if someone’s bond or whatever does go belly up they can point at the agencies and their own job is still safe.

    That’s why the Euro politicians hate the agencies so much, because they do matter, and would like to find a way to regulate them. Argentina would be happy about that too:-)

  • #108875
    Profile photo of zoro
    zoro
    Participant

    There is much debate about the competency of the ratings agencies, e.g. the sub prime mortgage saga, but their relevance is unquestionable.

    They matter because there are thousands of pension funds (and others) around the world with trillions of $/€/£ to invest and for safety’s sake, the vast majority of them will have strict rules about the quality of investments they are allowed to make. Often resticted to AAA.

    And, of course, it is the agencies who determine the quality of those investments.

    The fund managers can then breathe a sigh of relief in that if someone’s bond or whatever does go belly up they can point at the agencies and their own job is still safe.

    That’s why the Euro politicians hate the agencies so much, because they do matter, and would like to find a way to regulate them. Argentina would be happy about that too:-)

  • #109076
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    Saw this comment in the Telegraph:

    This all happened 3/4 years ago and Moody’s have finally cottoned on that the bank’s might be underwater with billions of loans. You wouldn’t pay these rating agency peoiple in washers.

    It has been clear for some time that it is Spain and not Greece that will destroy the Euro….. and it’s coming soon.

    Another poster said people predicting Spain’s downfall a few years ago were branded as loonies. I seem to remember something similar on here 😆

  • #108876
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    Saw this comment in the Telegraph:

    This all happened 3/4 years ago and Moody’s have finally cottoned on that the bank’s might be underwater with billions of loans. You wouldn’t pay these rating agency peoiple in washers.

    It has been clear for some time that it is Spain and not Greece that will destroy the Euro….. and it’s coming soon.

    Another poster said people predicting Spain’s downfall a few years ago were branded as loonies. I seem to remember something similar on here 😆

  • #109077
    Profile photo of peterhun
    peterhun
    Participant

    @zoro wrote:

    The fund managers can then breathe a sigh of relief in that if someone’s bond or whatever does go belly up they can point at the agencies and their own job is still safe.

    If you under-perform the market you are not going to look good no matter what the rating agency’s say.

  • #108877
    Profile photo of peterhun
    peterhun
    Participant

    @zoro wrote:

    The fund managers can then breathe a sigh of relief in that if someone’s bond or whatever does go belly up they can point at the agencies and their own job is still safe.

    If you under-perform the market you are not going to look good no matter what the rating agency’s say.

  • #109079
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Yup and the people that ridiculed us are now proclaiming to be on “our” side. They are cameleonts switching to whatever side that suits them best for the time being. Either you make bad investments go belly up or you prolong the agony by bailing them out by the tax payers… this last thing has the side effects that investments continue to be made against “common sense”. This is what has been happening for the last few years. As soon as the states stops funding these bailouts new problems will arise. This is the biggest transfer in wealth that has ever happened… from the normal people to the corporate owners.

    This is built into the current system with boom and busts. The have passed these problem on several times during the dot com, sub prime etc etc.

  • #108879
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Yup and the people that ridiculed us are now proclaiming to be on “our” side. They are cameleonts switching to whatever side that suits them best for the time being. Either you make bad investments go belly up or you prolong the agony by bailing them out by the tax payers… this last thing has the side effects that investments continue to be made against “common sense”. This is what has been happening for the last few years. As soon as the states stops funding these bailouts new problems will arise. This is the biggest transfer in wealth that has ever happened… from the normal people to the corporate owners.

    This is built into the current system with boom and busts. The have passed these problem on several times during the dot com, sub prime etc etc.

  • #109080
    Profile photo of zoro
    zoro
    Participant

    @peterhun wrote:

    If you under-perform the market you are not going to look good no matter what the rating agency’s say.

    Yes you’re right, you wouldn’t look good, but only if you consistently under-perform would you get the sack, whereas investing recklessly i.e. ignoring the ratings agencies and losing the bet, would get you the sack pretty much straight away and maybe an indictment.

    Pension fund managers are not paid to take risks they’re paid not to lose money. Risk takers tend to work for specialist funds offering the possibility of high returns rather than boring old pension funds.

  • #108880
    Profile photo of zoro
    zoro
    Participant

    @peterhun wrote:

    If you under-perform the market you are not going to look good no matter what the rating agency’s say.

    Yes you’re right, you wouldn’t look good, but only if you consistently under-perform would you get the sack, whereas investing recklessly i.e. ignoring the ratings agencies and losing the bet, would get you the sack pretty much straight away and maybe an indictment.

    Pension fund managers are not paid to take risks they’re paid not to lose money. Risk takers tend to work for specialist funds offering the possibility of high returns rather than boring old pension funds.

  • #109083
    Profile photo of GarySFBCN
    GarySFBCN
    Participant

    Well, this appeared on my Facebook, and I can’t verify the source. If true, this is not a good sign – they need to be transparent, not heavy-handed. Here is the Google translated quote:

    Protests continue against the power of banks. In Barcelona, ​​after the eviction last night of camping outside the headquarters of the Caixa, are re-convene caceroladas daily, at 8am, 14h and 19h. After them, meetings are convened as yesterday, in which among other things, alleged that some media had been getting calls from La Caixa asking if they would continue providing coverage to the protests, and recalling investments that entity made in advertising in the media.

    In Castellano:

    Continúan las protestas contra el poder de los bancos. En Barcelona, tras el desalojo anoche de los acampados frente a la sede de la Caixa, se vuelven a convocar caceroladas diarias, a las 8h, las 14h y las 19h. Tras las mismas, se convocan asambleas como la de ayer, en la que entre otras cosas, se denunciaba que algunos medios de comunicación habían estado recibiendo llamadas desde La Caixa preguntándoles si éstos continuarían dando cobertura a las protestas, y recordando las inversiones que dicha entidad hace en publicidad en dichos medios.

  • #108883
    Profile photo of GarySFBCN
    GarySFBCN
    Participant

    Well, this appeared on my Facebook, and I can’t verify the source. If true, this is not a good sign – they need to be transparent, not heavy-handed. Here is the Google translated quote:

    Protests continue against the power of banks. In Barcelona, ​​after the eviction last night of camping outside the headquarters of the Caixa, are re-convene caceroladas daily, at 8am, 14h and 19h. After them, meetings are convened as yesterday, in which among other things, alleged that some media had been getting calls from La Caixa asking if they would continue providing coverage to the protests, and recalling investments that entity made in advertising in the media.

    In Castellano:

    Continúan las protestas contra el poder de los bancos. En Barcelona, tras el desalojo anoche de los acampados frente a la sede de la Caixa, se vuelven a convocar caceroladas diarias, a las 8h, las 14h y las 19h. Tras las mismas, se convocan asambleas como la de ayer, en la que entre otras cosas, se denunciaba que algunos medios de comunicación habían estado recibiendo llamadas desde La Caixa preguntándoles si éstos continuarían dando cobertura a las protestas, y recordando las inversiones que dicha entidad hace en publicidad en dichos medios.

  • #109091
    Profile photo of GarySFBCN
    GarySFBCN
    Participant

    From Edward Hugh on Facebook. It looks like PP’s credibility is falling. What I don’t understand is the continued ‘hard line’ on austerity measures. There is a moral, emotional undercurrent within the demand for austerity, and as we know, emotional responses rarely make sensible policy. A country is not a person. It can take on debt. It isn’t always supposed to be pay as you go. Debt allows the building of infrastructure and finding a cure for caner. Yes, I do agree that the debt is out of control, but having a sensible 50-year plan to solve the problem is the way to go.

    Regardless, austerity measures are not working. The situation reminds me of Albert Einstein’s definition of insanity: Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

    An infusion of investment into job-creating industries could provide the synergy to turn the economy around. But no, they are all only concerned about debt. If the euro falls, it will due to bad policy, lack of planning and inept contingency plans. And of course, lack of oversight of the international crime syndicate otherwise know as the financial services industry.

    For people on the outside looking in, with each passing day Spain gets to seem more and more like Greece. Now last year’s deficit has again been revised upwards, this time from 8.5% to 8.9%, a number which (if all this means anything anymore) is only 0.3% down on the 9.2% deficit invoiced in 2010. Yet, I am sure the government of Lose Luis Zapatero and Elena Salgado did try and implement cuts, and I am sure only part of the responsibility for the fiasco belongs to the autonomous communities. The latest number only serves to underline the extent of the economic problem facing Spain. Even with this deficit, GDP growth on the year was a tiny 0.3%. Just imagine what it would have been had they cut back to the 6% deficit they promised!

    One interesting side detail here is that the three communities whose deficit revision has pushed the number up – Madrid, Valencia, and Castilla & Leon – are all heartland PP regions, where the government has long been in the hands of the Partido Popular, the party running Spain’s current government. Those who remember Elena Salgado’s staunch defence of the “we WILL reach the 6% target” last year may well wonder what good reason there is to expect the administration to be able to comply with this year’s targets.

    And another interesting detail is the fact that the region of Madrid is among the “offenders”. The President of this region is none other than Esperanza Aguirre, emblematic figurehead of the PP’s hard right, and also one of the key actors in the Bankia/Caja Madrid affair.

    So this brings us to the common thread here. These people are saying one thing and doing another, and this is what is destroying Spain’s credibility before the markets. Years of arrogance, brow beating and bullying of those who maintained that all was not as it was claimed to be in Spain are now bearing their fruit, a complete collapse in market confidence in the country’s institutions. At first most fair minded journalists couldn’t believe that people who seemed so normal and so reasonable could be lying so brazenly. Now they know. As I say, the difference between Greece and Spain is that all the important numbers are known and monitored, whether at the Economy Ministry or the Bank of Spain. They are just not made public. There’s even a verb for this in Spanish, “maquillar”.

  • #108891
    Profile photo of GarySFBCN
    GarySFBCN
    Participant

    From Edward Hugh on Facebook. It looks like PP’s credibility is falling. What I don’t understand is the continued ‘hard line’ on austerity measures. There is a moral, emotional undercurrent within the demand for austerity, and as we know, emotional responses rarely make sensible policy. A country is not a person. It can take on debt. It isn’t always supposed to be pay as you go. Debt allows the building of infrastructure and finding a cure for caner. Yes, I do agree that the debt is out of control, but having a sensible 50-year plan to solve the problem is the way to go.

    Regardless, austerity measures are not working. The situation reminds me of Albert Einstein’s definition of insanity: Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

    An infusion of investment into job-creating industries could provide the synergy to turn the economy around. But no, they are all only concerned about debt. If the euro falls, it will due to bad policy, lack of planning and inept contingency plans. And of course, lack of oversight of the international crime syndicate otherwise know as the financial services industry.

    For people on the outside looking in, with each passing day Spain gets to seem more and more like Greece. Now last year’s deficit has again been revised upwards, this time from 8.5% to 8.9%, a number which (if all this means anything anymore) is only 0.3% down on the 9.2% deficit invoiced in 2010. Yet, I am sure the government of Lose Luis Zapatero and Elena Salgado did try and implement cuts, and I am sure only part of the responsibility for the fiasco belongs to the autonomous communities. The latest number only serves to underline the extent of the economic problem facing Spain. Even with this deficit, GDP growth on the year was a tiny 0.3%. Just imagine what it would have been had they cut back to the 6% deficit they promised!

    One interesting side detail here is that the three communities whose deficit revision has pushed the number up – Madrid, Valencia, and Castilla & Leon – are all heartland PP regions, where the government has long been in the hands of the Partido Popular, the party running Spain’s current government. Those who remember Elena Salgado’s staunch defence of the “we WILL reach the 6% target” last year may well wonder what good reason there is to expect the administration to be able to comply with this year’s targets.

    And another interesting detail is the fact that the region of Madrid is among the “offenders”. The President of this region is none other than Esperanza Aguirre, emblematic figurehead of the PP’s hard right, and also one of the key actors in the Bankia/Caja Madrid affair.

    So this brings us to the common thread here. These people are saying one thing and doing another, and this is what is destroying Spain’s credibility before the markets. Years of arrogance, brow beating and bullying of those who maintained that all was not as it was claimed to be in Spain are now bearing their fruit, a complete collapse in market confidence in the country’s institutions. At first most fair minded journalists couldn’t believe that people who seemed so normal and so reasonable could be lying so brazenly. Now they know. As I say, the difference between Greece and Spain is that all the important numbers are known and monitored, whether at the Economy Ministry or the Bank of Spain. They are just not made public. There’s even a verb for this in Spanish, “maquillar”.

  • #109100
    Profile photo of peterhun
    peterhun
    Participant

    Germany isolated as Latin Bloc calls the shots
    The eurozone’s ‘Latin Bloc’ is in full revolt. The trio of French, Italian, and Spanish leaders – backed by world powers – are to push for a radical shift in Europe’s economic strategy at crucial summit on Wednesday.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/comment/ambroseevans_pritchard/9280847/Germany-isolated-as-Latin-Bloc-calls-the-shots.html

    Giles Merritt, head of the Brussels think-tank Friends of Europe, said the mood is ugly in the corridors of EU power. “The sheer anger directed against Angela Merkel is starting to shake the Germans for the first time. They are beginning to understand how deeply unpopular they have become, and how little time they have to act. The pressure from Beijing and Washington is mounting,” he said.

  • #108900
    Profile photo of peterhun
    peterhun
    Participant

    Germany isolated as Latin Bloc calls the shots
    The eurozone’s ‘Latin Bloc’ is in full revolt. The trio of French, Italian, and Spanish leaders – backed by world powers – are to push for a radical shift in Europe’s economic strategy at crucial summit on Wednesday.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/comment/ambroseevans_pritchard/9280847/Germany-isolated-as-Latin-Bloc-calls-the-shots.html

    Giles Merritt, head of the Brussels think-tank Friends of Europe, said the mood is ugly in the corridors of EU power. “The sheer anger directed against Angela Merkel is starting to shake the Germans for the first time. They are beginning to understand how deeply unpopular they have become, and how little time they have to act. The pressure from Beijing and Washington is mounting,” he said.

  • #109102
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    Perhaps it will be the Germans who leave the Euro 😉 😆

  • #108902
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    Perhaps it will be the Germans who leave the Euro 😉 😆

  • #109105
    Profile photo of angie
    angie
    Spectator

    Stranger things have happened katy, I’ve thought and said before that perhaps Germany will get fed up with the whole thing as Eurozone Banker and decide to go it alone in some way, but some Germans recently said they would like the UK to join forces with them. Perhaps we will have a joint currency with them called the Poundmark 😆

  • #108905
    Profile photo of angie
    angie
    Spectator

    Stranger things have happened katy, I’ve thought and said before that perhaps Germany will get fed up with the whole thing as Eurozone Banker and decide to go it alone in some way, but some Germans recently said they would like the UK to join forces with them. Perhaps we will have a joint currency with them called the Poundmark 😆

  • #109107
    Profile photo of peterhun
    peterhun
    Participant

    “but some Germans recently said they would like the UK to join forces with them.”

    I’d have more sympathy if the Germans hadn’t very actively conspired with investors to get the Pound kicked out of the ERM.

    German exit from the Euro has been Edward Hugh solution since the beginning of the crisis.

  • #108907
    Profile photo of peterhun
    peterhun
    Participant

    “but some Germans recently said they would like the UK to join forces with them.”

    I’d have more sympathy if the Germans hadn’t very actively conspired with investors to get the Pound kicked out of the ERM.

    German exit from the Euro has been Edward Hugh solution since the beginning of the crisis.

  • #109131
    Profile photo of Chopera
    Chopera
    Participant

    Looks like the Spanish regions have to roll over an extra €28 billion this year:

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/05/23/us-spain-regions-idUSBRE84M1AU20120523

  • #108931
    Profile photo of Chopera
    Chopera
    Participant

    Looks like the Spanish regions have to roll over an extra €28 billion this year:

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/05/23/us-spain-regions-idUSBRE84M1AU20120523

  • #109134
    Profile photo of DBMarcos99
    DBMarcos99
    Participant

    I get the feeling that whatever is decided this week in the European corridors of power, will determine the economic future of Spain, and indeed all Europe. Whether or not we get to be told what’s really happening straight away, is another matter.

  • #108934
    Profile photo of DBMarcos99
    DBMarcos99
    Participant

    I get the feeling that whatever is decided this week in the European corridors of power, will determine the economic future of Spain, and indeed all Europe. Whether or not we get to be told what’s really happening straight away, is another matter.

  • #109135
    Profile photo of peterhun
    peterhun
    Participant

    @dbmarcos99 wrote:

    I get the feeling that whatever is decided this week in the European corridors of power

    Nothing, apparently

    EU summit: the full nothingness

    Tonight’s text on Greece from the EU summit. Not much, to be honest.

    http://ftalphaville.ft.com/blog/2012/05/24/1014081/eu-summit-the-full-nothingness/

  • #108935
    Profile photo of peterhun
    peterhun
    Participant

    @dbmarcos99 wrote:

    I get the feeling that whatever is decided this week in the European corridors of power

    Nothing, apparently

    EU summit: the full nothingness

    Tonight’s text on Greece from the EU summit. Not much, to be honest.

    http://ftalphaville.ft.com/blog/2012/05/24/1014081/eu-summit-the-full-nothingness/

  • #117561
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Spanish GDP per capita fell 1pc in 2012 and now stands at 97pc of the EU average according to Eurostat.

    So GDP per head is going down, whilst the national debt per head is going up. That means less output per person and rising debts per person, incomes down, debts up. We need an economic miracle or I guess there is some sort of default / write off in the future. One way or another, Germany will lose the money it has lent to Spain.

  • #117564
    Profile photo of DBMarcos99
    DBMarcos99
    Participant

    So GDP per head is going down

    Actually, GDP after a fall of .5% in Q1 is now forecast to be very close to inversion point in Q2, and many commentators are predicting that growth in GDP resumes in Q3. So, grounds for optimism! 😉

  • #112598
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Hmm. Let’s see. I think the economy is going to be in the doldrums for a while yet, though it will recovery one day – it has to.

  • #112701
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    In what context the recovery will be ? Its all subjective coming from low negative to zero could be construed as recovery !!!.

  • #112703
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    My taxi driver in Madrid told me that things have been stable, that is no better but no worse since about March. I always find Taxi drivers have a finger on the pulse. They get to talk to so many different kinds of people.

  • #114302
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    I do the same when it comes to investmet but the other way around. When cab drivers are talking about putting money in the stock market etc I pull out. 😉 It means that no easy money can be had in that point in time.

  • #114992
    Profile photo of GarySFBCN
    GarySFBCN
    Participant

    From Edward Hugh’s Facebook today:

    A relatively quiet start to the new week, but Spanish yields continue to tick upwards. This morning 10 year yields crossed the 5% threshold. It is no longer possible for Mariano Rajoy to claim that financial conditions and confidence in his country are improving. That would be plain false, since they are clearly deteriorating. The fact of the matter is, he could neither claim credit when they improved, nor be blamed when they deteriorate since factors well beyond his control (and ken) are evidently at work. What can be said is that the outlook for the entire Spanish economy is far from being as rosy as many would claim.

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