Government debt continues to rise in the EU

The government debt to GDP ratio in the euro area rose from 92.3% at the end of the first quarter of 2013, to 93.4% at the end of the second quarter of 2013, according to figures released yesterday by Eurostat. When we look at the whole of the EU, the EU28, the figures rose from 85.9% to 86.8% over the … Continue reading

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32 million foreigners living in the 27 EU States last year

The biggest driver of population growth in most EU Member States in recent years has been immigration. In fact, between 2004 and 2008, 3 to 4 million immigrants settled in the each year. This is according to the third Demography Report just published by the EU. In total, in 2010, there were 32.4 million foreigners living in an EU27 Member … Continue reading

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GDP per head in the EU varies between 41% and 268% of the average

Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per inhabitant of the EU27, and expressed in Purchasing Power Standards, varied from 41% to 268% of the average in 2009, based on first preliminary estimates, and just published by eurostat. In Finland, France, Spain, Italy, Cyprus and Greece, GDP per inhabitant was within 10% of the EU average. Ireland, the Netherlands, Austria, Sweden, Denmark, the … Continue reading

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Employment in EU agriculture falls 25%

Between 2000 and 2009, employment in the agricultural sector in the EU27 fell by 25%, which was the equivalent of 3.7 million full-time jobs. It fell by 17% in the EU15 (those countries in membership before 2004) and by 31% in the 12 member states (NMS12) that joined the EU in 2004 and 2007. In 2009, total employment in the … Continue reading

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We shall defend the euro whatever it takes

These are the words of Ollie Rehn, the EU Economic Affairs Commissioner over the weekend after EU finance ministers were involved in eleven hours of talks. The result of the emergency meeting which was brought together to deal with the fiasco in Greece, will have far-reaching implications throughout the eurozone. The agreement means that the 16 countries in the euro … Continue reading

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Avoiding a forest fire in the EU

“It is absolutely essential to contain the bushfire in Greece so that it will not become a forest fire and a threat to financial stability for the European Union and its economy as a whole.” So said Ollie Rehn, the EU economic and monetary affairs commissioner at a news conference in Brussels. From forest fire to deadly disease: Dominique Strauss-Kahn, … Continue reading

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Beware of Greeks seeking gifts

The euro zone is in crisis. It seems that not only does Greece have the largest budget deficit in the EU in proportion to the size of its economy, but previous Greek governments have been ‘economical with the truth’ when presenting official statistics. The Greek budget deficit is around 13% of GDP, and the country has agreed to reduce this … Continue reading

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CPI inflation drops to 1.6%

The government’s target measure for inflation, the Consumer Prices Index (CPI) fell from 1.8% in July to 1.6% in August. This was its lowest level since February 2005. The Bank of England aims to keep this measure of inflation within one percentage point of a 2% target rate.   The largest downward pressure affecting the CPI rate came from housing … Continue reading

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