Prime Minister Antonis Samaras of Greece found the going tough over the weekend as he failed to convince all members of his governing coalition that additional austerity measures must be enacted to satisfy the troika and obtain the next tranche of rescue funding. Democratic Left leader Fotis Kouvelis said that the cuts, which Samaras has already called unfair and painful, had not been decided on and that poorer Greeks should be protected from more austerity.
Bloomberg reported Monday that the lack of consensus was just one of a number of eurozone issues facing action in the week ahead, including a decision scheduled for Wednesday by Germany’s Constitutional Court on the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) and an election in the Netherlands that could tip the scales there away from austerity.
The euro, which had risen initially on the European Central Bank’s (ECB) bond-buying plan, retreated as traders shed the currency in advance of such knotty issues.
Samaras, Kouvelis and Pasok leader Evangelos Venizelos met Saturday to try to reach agreement on 11.5 billion euros ($14.7 billion) in spending cuts required by the troika of the ECB, the European Union and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) before it will release the next segment of money.