Great Graphic: EU Budget Balance Forecasts for 2015

This Great Graphic was tweeted by Ian Bremmer.  It shows the budget balances projected for 2015.  Spain, France and UK project the highest shortfalls.  Given the growth that the UK and Spain reported for 2014 and project for 2015 on a cyclical basis, the size of those shortfalls are particularly problematic. 

Greece, Germany and Estonia project the smallest deficits, followed by Latvia, Lithuania, Sweden and Austria.   Germany has a grand coalition government (CDU and SPD), and it agreed to a balanced budget this year.  Some increased spending has been agreed upon but it will be financed with current revenues and the savings created by lower interest rates.   

A problem that is widely recognized is that the needed reforms in the periphery ought to offset by some easing among those countries that have room to work fiscally.  Germany rejects this logic:  It is not clear how an increased budget deficit in Germany helps Italy or France, for example, become more competitive, or expedite the strengthening of banks' balance sheets. Nevertheless, if every one pursues austerity, it is not clear how growth and price stability can be achieved. 

This is a version of the fallacy of composition.  What is good for the parts is not necessarily good for the whole. 
Great Graphic: EU Budget Balance Forecasts for 2015 Great Graphic:  EU Budget Balance Forecasts for 2015 Reviewed by Marc Chandler on January 05, 2015 Rating: 5
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