Today EU leaders hold firm on Kremlin sanctions (FT)
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The Corner contextualizes the EU’s economy from Spain with exclusive analysis from market leaders.

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Eurozone’s plight

In Europe

MADRID | By JP Marín ArreseOnce again, Greece has ignited the flame of instability in the Eurozone. The prospect of early elections coupled with the left-wing party´s scores in the polls has resulted in severe shock-waves hitting other South-Med countries. The promised debt default by the better placed candidate in this race stands as a formidable threat to Europe. What happens in this relatively small country is bound to hit all of us. Confidence in sovereigns will dramatically fall while financials will also bear the brunt. 

Markets

What if QE operates on the supply side and keeps prices low?

WASHINGTON | By Pablo PardoDo you want a Who’s Who of the Republican talking heads? If so, go to this list. Those are the luminaries that asked the Federal Reserve not to go ahead with the Quantitative Easing in 2010, for fear of inflation and currency debasement. Four year later, inflation is nowhere to be seen, and, according to the IMF, the US dollar has strengthened its role in the monetary system. 

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World economy

Japanese economy: short-term gain, long term pain?

MADRID | By Luis Arroyo | When many were speaking of a new Japanese recession and the failure of Shinzo Abe’s bold Keynesian policy, his Liberal Democrat Party obtained a sweeping victory at the polls on Sunday. In Europe, the Abenomics are in austerity fans’ crosshairs because if these policies happen to work they would look ridiculous. They were delighted when Japan’s GDP contracted in 3Q. But I’ve been following the Nippon economy for some time and I don’t really rust quarterly figures.

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World economy

China bans its own national anthem

LETTER FROM ASIA-PACIFIC | By Ray Kwong When it comes to putting the kibosh on things, the folks at Zhongnanhai (China’s version of the White House) have few peers. In recent memory, China has seen fit to ban puns, long beards, zombies, American pork, British cheese, clams from Alaska, Islamic-style clothing, TV programs that feature one-night stands, April Fools jokes, Bitcoin, film stars who use drugs or pay for sex, Windows 8, smoking in public places, the entire Muslim holy month of Ramadan, and the “The Big Bang Theory.”

 And that was just this year.

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World economy

Analysis: The oil crisis

MADRID | By JP Marín ArresePlummeting oil prices are sending shock waves to stock markets as investors fear the violent swing might cripple the global economic balance. Some exporting countries like Russia are crumbling while investments in industries face widespread disruption as they become out-priced. Even if importing countries are footing a downsized bill in the short run, volatility is never welcome. 

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In Europe

Greece: The one question Syriza needs to answer

ATHENS | By Yiannis Mouzakis via  MacroPolisWith the coalition in Greece getting only 160 votes for its presidential candidate in the first ballot, falling short even of the most conservative estimate, based on the currently available information it seems that the number of deputies that will vote in favour in the third round on December 29th will not reach the minimum 180 required.

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In Europe

Is austerity losing the battle in Europe?

BERLIN | By Alberto Lozano | The different measures implemented in Europe in order to boost growth through increased monetary action, investment and structural reforms have replaced austerity as the new dominant dogma. While Angela Merkel is adapting to the new situation, Bundesbank president Jens Weidmann disagrees with more budget flexibility and a possible QE by the ECB in 2015. (Cartoon: Horsch / La Repubblica).

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