Greece, Creditors Talk Past Each Other, Hear What They Want To Hear

So, talks are going really well.
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Take that fucking thing behind me down, already.

Greece’s latest day of reckoning has come. This does not seem to be of concern to anyone: I mean, it’s not like anything has gone wrong with these talks before, and everyone is pretty sure Tsipras won’t really let things come to a head, perhaps because they keep listening to only half of what he says, or because the PM has turned his rhetorical fire away from Angela Merkel’s predecessor of 75 years ago and towards those Greeks who actually still have money.

Greece will seek an extension to its rescue deal from the rest of the eurozone Wednesday, two officials with knowledge of the situation said, signaling a shift in the standoff between Athens and its creditors….

In a defiant speech to Parliament in Athens earlier on Tuesday, new Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras appeared to contradict some of these demands. Declaring he wouldn’t submit to “psychological blackmail,” he reiterated his government’s plans to immediately dismantle already-implemented austerity measures, such as changes to labor laws.

Further:

Prime Minister Alex Tsipras has announced radical measures aimed at what he calls the "oligarchs", including re-licensing private TV channels, ending "crony" bank loans for the well-connected, exercising the state's voting rights in the case of majority shareholdings of private banks, unwinding some key privatizations and aggressive tax audits of those with offshore bank accounts.

Not that any of it matters, as the bailout and attendant austerity isn’t really the problem, anyway, according to some.

Removing austerity may not be nearly enough to restore economic stability — let alone stoke growth and create the new jobs that Greece desperately needs….

Just as harmful as austerity cutbacks have been the structural problems inhibiting economic efficiency, many of which have barely budged, despite creditors’ demands.

Businesses are still stymied by labor rules and tax policies that under the previous government often changed week to week — 2,200 new tax regulations in the last two years alone.

Greece to Seek Extension on Loan Agreement [WSJ]
A Possible Day of Reckoning, Again, for Greece and Europe [NYT The Upshot blog]
‘It’s As if There’s Not a Single Bear Left’ in Eurozone Equities – BAML [WSJ MoneyBeat blog]
German Investor Confidence Rises to One-Year High Before QE [Bloomberg]
PM Tsipras declares war at home on Greece’s ‘oligarchs’ [Reuters]
Greek Bureaucracy, Not Just Austerity, Is an Economic Drag [NYT]

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