Destinations Magazine

Greece: Is a Grexit off the Table?

By Stizzard
Greece: Is a Grexit off the table?

THE mood in Greek business circles is brightening. Greece is still grappling with a record recession that has shrunk output by more than a fifth and pushed unemployment close to 27%, the highest rate in the European Union. But a monthly index of business sentiment produced by IOBE, a think-tank, jumped in December to its highest level in two years (see chart).Yannis Stournaras, the finance minister, predicts the economy will start to recover by October, boosted by a long-awaited rebound in tourism. A rush of early bookings has cheered hoteliers on Aegean Islands. Optimism in foreign markets and assurances from Berlin that Greece will be able to stay in the euro zone are helping, too. Billions of euros stashed under mattresses last summer, when a “Grexit” seemed imminent, have returned to their owners’ bank accounts. The Athens stockmarket has perked up and private-equity firms are scouting for bargains among crisis-battered Greek companies.Opinion polls suggest the coalition government led by New Democracy, a centre-right party, is becoming more stable. Several recent polls showed the conservatives edging ahead of Syriza, the left-wing opposition, despite new…

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