Hollande faces budget shortfall test

Not even a passing mainstream thought to look at currency users like France, Spain, Italy, California, and Illinois, that are facing severe market discipline via solvency/interest rate risk any differently from currency issuers like the UK, US, Japan, and Denmark where those types of market forces remain stubbornly inapplicable.

One would think something so obvious and ‘in their face’ year after year, decade after decade, might get their attention…

Hollande faces budget shortfall test

(FT) François Hollande has promised that he would take whatever measures necessary to rein in France’s heavy public debt, which is rising close to 90 per cent of gross domestic product. He knows that to win backing for his growth initiative from German chancellor Angela Merkel depends on assuring her that France will meet its obligations on its own public finances. The European Commission’s forecast projected a budget deficit next year of 4.2 per cent, compared to the target of 3 per cent set by Brussels and to which Mr Hollande is committed. That amounts to a gap of some €24bn. Mr Hollande is unlikely to give further details of his plans until he gets an independent report on the public finances at the end of June (after National Assembly elections).

Dutch austerity consensus unravels

(FT) Freedom party leader Geert Wilders brought down the country’s ruling coalition last month when he pulled out of talks over budget cuts needed to meet strict EU deficit limits, triggering elections scheduled for September 12. Mr Wilders is campaigning fiercely against what he calls the government’s “subservience” to Brussels’ demands for budget cuts. A poll released on Monday suggests voters are turning against the last-minute budget deal reached after the government fell between the ruling liberals and centre-left opposition parties. The April 26 deal pledged the Netherlands to meet an EU deadline to slash its 2013 budget deficit to below 3 per cent of gross domestic product, down from a projected 4.7 per cent.

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