Is Greece heading for a recovery?

Greece. GDP
Our latest report on Greece is now out.

With the anti-austerity Syriza party continuing to lead in polls ahead of Greece’s election on January 25, what is the outlook for restoring growth and increasing employment following six years of deep recession?

Despite some timid signs of recovery, notably in the tourism sector, recent short-term indicators still show a decline for 2014. Our analysis shows that the speed of a market-driven recovery would be insufficient to address the urgent problems of poverty and unemployment. And the protracted austerity required to service Greece’s sovereign debt would merely ensure the continuation of a national crisis, with spillover effects to the rest of the eurozone—especially now, when the region is vulnerable to another recession and a prolonged period of Japanese-style price deflation.

Using the Levy Institute’s macroeconometric model for Greece, we evaluate the impact of policy alternatives aimed at stimulating the country’s economy without endangering its current account, including capital transfers from the European Union, suspension of interest payments on public debt and use of these resources to boost demand and employment, and a New Deal plan using public funds to target investment in production growth and finance a direct job creation program.

Authors: Dimitri B. Papadimitriou, Michalis Nikiforos and Gennaro Zezza
Levy Economics Institute Strategic Analysis, December 2014

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