Today the world is taking a sober look at the Greek bail out plan, and realizing it raises more concerns than solutions. See Bloomberg: Greek rescue doubts spur sovereign debt risk on contagion bets.
At best the bail out it meant to tide Greece over until they are able to borrow again at more investment grade rates in the bond market.
But even with the emergency loans now, Greece would likely need to tap into the bond market again by 2011. Maybe earlier if global growth ends up being slower than hoped over the next few months. See WSJ: Greece, Euro Zone, IMF face long road.
“…debt will still be rising in 2011 and 2012, topping out only in 2013 at an eye-watering 149% of GDP. In 2012, the budget deficit is still forecast to be 6.5% of GDP. Greece's credit ratings may then be even lower than they are today; this may further complicate market access. Bond investors will have to be convinced already in 2011 that the debt trajectory and economy will turn around decisively, in order to engender private interest in Greek debt.”
Meanwhile the majority of Greek people are evidently not behind this plan. The masses are protesting, striking and generally fighting the need for radical spending cuts. This is like trying to bail someone out against their will. It is doomed unless the people being rescued buy in.
And this is not just about deficits in Greece, a list of Euro zone members are increasingly at risk. At 14.3 percent of gross domestic product, Ireland had the euro region’s largest deficit last year. Greece’s was 13.6 percent, Spain’s was 11.2 percent and Portugal’s 9.4 percent. The shortfalls as a share of gross domestic product were more than three times the European Union limit of 3 percent. Today credit default swap spreads on Spain increased 51 basis points to 208.5, Portugal rose 83 to 358, Italy climbed 23 to 157 and Ireland increased 46 to 223.
Adding insult to injury, there should be some resentment among non-Euro zone countries when they realize that 30% of the proposed Greek bail out is to come from IMF members (ie., US, Cdn, UK taxpayers), who already have serious debt and fiscal problems of their own. When people are feeling financially strapped it is more difficult to indulge and support others, especially when the others are not keen on committing to the significant cuts and changes needed. Historically these dynamics have spawned a fountain of protectionist feelings. Not good; but human and understandable.