Harvard Professor Kenneth Rogoff is warning that the IMF bailout of Greece is just the first of many to come.
“It’s more likely than not that we’ll need an IMF program in at least one more country in the euro area over the next two to three years,” Rogoff, a former IMF chief economist who has co-authored studies of financial and sovereign debt crises, said in a telephone interview. “The budget cuts needed in Europe in many countries are profound.”
Portuguese, Spanish and Irish bond yields jumped last week as investors questioned their ability to reduce budget deficits and avoid Greece’s fate....
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 likelihood is “better than 50-50” that others in the 16-nation euro area will end up requiring help from the Washington-based lender, said Rogoff, 56. He expects the IMF will eventually dispatch more loans to Greece than the as-much- as 15 billion euro it’s currently offering.
Rogoff is right to question the ability of the PIIGS to sustain their deficit spending. However, the more immediate concern lies not to the west, but to the east.
(Bloomberg) -- Ukraine seeks to secure a $20 billion loan from the International Monetary Fund as early as next month to help finance its budget deficit and cut the cost of future borrowing abroad, Deputy Prime Minister Serhiy Tigipko said in an interview in Washington.
Ukraine has already borrowed from the IMF last year. So much focus has been given to the PIIGS nations lately that the markets seen to have forgotten the disastrous condition of the former Soviet republics.