OFCE le blog has posted the English translation of an article I wrote with André Grjebine a few weeks ago, for the French daily Le Monde. We commented the Standard & Poor’s downgrades, developing the points I had made here.
I maintain that the motivation of S&P marks a turning point in the debate on EMU governance. It was the first time that a major market participant explicitly challenged the priorities that the German leadership is imposing to Europe.
The current discussion on the Greek austerity plan shows that markets are joining those who preach to the desert.
Standard and Poor’s decision to downgrade a large number of EU countries, on Friday, was widely expected; and, as I write, markets barely reacted. This is not surprising, as the downgrade had already been embedded in market behaviours.
There are of course notable political consequences, for example in what concerns the French presidential race. But from an economist perspective, this is really not a turning point.
There is nevertheless a remarkable news, that went almost unnoticed. Read more…