Greece Should ‘Default Big,’ Says Argentine Central Banker

Greece needs to default too. The right thing to have happen is for Greece to default in a hard restructuring as part of a comprehensive credible plan. The goal is to right the ship by getting all of the biggest debtors within the Maastricht hurdle while recapitalising the financial sector. And that will mean restructuring and defaults.

Bloomberg News has the goods on this story:

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Mario Blejer, who managed Argentina’s central bank in the aftermath of the world’s biggest sovereign default, said Greece should halt payments on its debt to stop a deterioration of the economy that threatens the European Union.

“This debt is unpayable,” Blejer, who was also an adviser to Bank of England Governor Mervyn King from 2003 to 2008, said in an interview in Buenos Aires. “Greece should default, and default big. A small default is worse than a big default and also worse than no default.”

I don’t have a lot to add because the article says it all. But you know I think Greece needs to default too; austerity is going to end in recession/depression for Europe where everyone loses. The right thing to have happen is for Greece to default in a hard restructuring as part of a comprehensive credible plan. The goal is to right the ship by getting all of the biggest debtors within the Maastricht hurdle while recapitalising the financial sector. And that will mean restructuring and defaults. For Greece, the haircut would then have to be very large, perhaps 50%.

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4 Comments
  1. David Lazarus says

    I think that the default needs to be closer to 90% if not more. A 50% default will still leave Greece with large interest payments and a crippled economy. Wipe those debts out completely. Declare them onerous and walk away from them all.

  2. Dave Holden says

    The comprehensive plan – I’d put at zero chance. A more piece meal, ten times as expensive, more convoluted can kicking plan – that I would think much more likely ;)

    1. David Lazarus says

      That is why Geithner will be on his Goldman Sachs sponsored save US banks tour. The last thing that US banks want is default. That could leave them holding huge losses. Making the finances of the US banks look shaky again, requiring more bailouts.

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