Daily Archives: June 29, 2011

By Kerin Hope and Ralph Atkins in Athens, and Esther Bintliff in London

18.45pm (Athens time): We’re wrapping up the live blog here. Here’s a quick recap of events today:

  • Greece’s 300-member parliament approved the austerity bill by 155 votes to 138 votes
  • Protests continued throughout the day, with police firing tear gas and demonstrators hurling stones and other debris, as well as setting fire to rubbish bins. As evening fell in Athens, demonstrations began spreading beyond Syntagma square.
  • 26 police and 15 protesters have been injured and transferred to hospitals, according to AP
  • Angela Merkel, German chancellor, said the austerity package was “a really good piece of news”
  • José Manuel Barroso, president of the European Commission, and Herman Van Rompuy, president of the European Council, praised the Greek decision – but also reminded everyone that there is another vote tomorrow
  • Markets, which had risen on Wednesday morning in anticipation of the vote, came off their highs once the “Yes” vote was confirmed – providing a lesson in an old saying that it’s ‘better to travel with hope than arrive’. Wall Street was looking at another session of healthy gains, with the S&P 500 lifted by the Athens news

Thankyou all for reading, and for more Greece coverage, go to www.ft.com/greece Read more

Alan Beattie

With all the suspense of a North Korean municipal election, Christine Lagarde becomes managing director of the IMF .

 Let’s take all the bad stuff as read: continuation of ludicrous decades-old stitch up of the MDship by the Europeans; increased likelihood that the US will try to hold on to the counterpart piece of patronage i.e. the presidency of the World Bank; conflict of interest from French banks and taxpayers’ exposure to Greece, akin to putting a debtor in charge of a bank, etc. Read more