Greek Syriza Party Leading in Polls Ahead of Today’s Election

Greek Syriza Party Leading in Polls Ahead of Today’s Election

Greek Syriza Party Leading in Polls Ahead of Sunday’s Election… The left-leaning Syriza party looks poised to take control of parliament in Greece.

What it means — As mentioned last week, Alexis Tsipras, the leader of Syriza, has toned down his calls for dramatic change as the elections get closer. But he is still advocating for reversing many of the austerity measures currently in place and reducing the debt that Greece owes to outside lenders.

The Troika of lenders who bailed out Greece — the ECB, the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and the European Commission — have drawn a line in the sand. They demand Greece maintain all austerity measures and make good on their debt. The IMF leader, Christine LaGarde, stated that: “A debt is a debt,” which is just a touch hypocritical since she helped orchestrate Greece’s write down of bonds three years ago, costing private investors hundreds of millions of dollars.

If Syriza wins on Sunday, the question is will Tsipras use the possibility of Greece leaving the euro to extract some reduction in the debt Greece owes. This seems the most likely scenario. The Troika would much rather “assist” Greece by easing repayment terms or reducing their debt outright than create a precedent by which a country leaves the euro.

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Greece fails to elect a President in Three Attempts

Greece fails to elect a President in Three Attempts… The New Democracy Party suffered a setback when its candidate for President fell short of the votes necessary for election.

What it means — After three attempts, the Greek political process calls for a snap election, which at this point favors the far-left leaning Syriza Party. This group has called for renegotiating the terms of the Greek bailout, demanding cuts in what is owed to the European Central Bank (ECB) and other creditors, and restoring social payments.

The possibility of Syriza gaining control of Greece sent that country’s stock market tumbling and yields on Greek debt soaring. Greek 3-year bonds now yield more than 12%. The troika that provided the bailout to Greece has suspended all payments until the country’s political situation is stabilized. If Syriza takes control, the possibility of Greece exiting the euro would be back on the table.