European Economic Crisis

Friday, December 9th, 2011
As the holiday season nears, people begin to spend their money on gifts for friends and family, while nations like Greece and Spain are facing great economic issues. Recently, the culturally and economically concentrated European Euro zone nations have been facing an economic recession.
Fears of such a debt crisis developed as early as 2009 and strengthened in 2010 as the rising government debt levels increasingly concerned investors across the globe. The government debts of these nations have accumulated from many issues including the use of “black money,” or unofficial transactions to evade paying extra government taxes. The downgrading government debts in countries like Greece, Ireland, and Portugal were especially concerning since these nations are still finding it very difficult to refinance their debts. Even though Europe’s Finance Ministers approved of a rescue package worth of 750 billion euro at stabilizing the financial calamity across Europe by creating the European Financial Stability Facility, some euro members needed further assistance. In October 2011, the second package was created for banks to accept 50% off of Greek debt owed to private creditors. 
Nonetheless, Europe as a whole should not be discerned as financially unstable, but the three most affected nations are Portugal, Greece, and Ireland, which together account for 6% of the euro zone’s gross domestic product. As a whole, the continent’s trade is even more prosperous than before the recession (www.wikipedia.org).
Although the issue is foreign and may seem outlandish to the average Chatham student, the issue is critical and affects the international economy greatly. When asked what some 11th grade students knew about the European economy she replied, “I don’t know much, but that Greece got bailed out” while another student replied, “I know that their bad economy will affect us, but I don’t know the specifics.” Another student agreed by stating that “even though Greece and those effected nations are so small, their economic issues will affect us in the long run.” Meanwhile some language classes, current political and economic events of certain foreign nations are discussed. In Senora Wishart’s Spanish Four class, she greatly stressed the effects the euro deficiency on the devastating unemployment rate of Spain, making the nation so desperate for change that they voted for an autocratic regime to reform the nation and maybe even move away from the euro system. 
The euro zone nations are formulating plans along with receiving aid from other nations as well as the European Central Bank to refuel their economies, but their primary concern is to reduce their debts.