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Christine Lagarde Doesn’t Care About Germany’s Winning Streak Against Greece

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Has done some pretty inconvenient math up here.

Angela Merkel and Wolfgang Schäuble won their recent battle with Greece in a very deliberate, German way, with a big assist from some asshole Greeks and some smaller client states. But as they gear up for some more very deliberate, very German talks in Athens, the IMF has an annoying reminder: Greece is not Germany, and no matter what you do in this round of endless negotiations, it will still not be able to pay its bills. And if you want the IMF to play ball—which you do—you’re going to have to do some very German negotiating with Christine Lagarde. And she’s not about to default on her bills.

"It's inevitable that there is an element of debt restructuring," IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde said at a news conference….

"For Greece to succeed and for any program to fly, a significant debt restructuring should take place," Lagarde said.

Of course, for any program to be agreed upon, Greece needs to have a government to agree to it. That may be a problem.

Greece’s ruling Syriza party is sliding toward a split as far-left dissidents resist Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras’s acquiescence to creditors’ demands, endangering his fragile government and complicating the country’s bailout negotiations.

How Germany Prevailed in the Greek Bailout [NYT]
Greek debt restructuring is inevitable, says IMF chief [Reuters]
Greece’s Alexis Tsipras Faces Battle to Avoid Syriza Split [WSJ]


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