Analysis: Portugal and Greece have very different problems

04/27/2010 | Economist (free content), The

Unlike Greece, Portugal's difficulties are not fiscal in nature, The Economist argues. They stem from low growth, which is not the kind of problem that is dragging Greece toward default. "Portugal is doing better than Greece in its budget deficit (9.4% of [gross domestic product] in 2009, compared with 12.7%) and public debt (85% of GDP this year, against 124% in Greece)," The Economist notes. "Unlike Greece, its public accounts are credible and it has a record of taking tough fiscal measures when necessary -- between 2005 and 2007, it cut its budget deficit in half, from 6.1% of GDP to 2.6%."

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