The euro is currently under pressure from debt problems in several of the so called peripheral countries using the single European currency, but it is Ireland that is under the microscope right now.
Its deficit is actually not as bad as Greece’s – the latest figure is 12 percent of gross domestic product, compared with Athens’ newly revised 15.4, which was for 2009. Portugal’s latest is 7.3 percent of GDP.
Ireland’s bond yields have soared in the past week – that is the amount it has to promise to pay to attract banks to lend money to the government.
Dublin’s 10 year bond now pays over eight percent whereas Greece has to offer 11.3 percent and Portugal 6.8 percent.
But when it comes to money owed to foreign banks, Ireland tops the euro zone league with debts of 730 billion euros; that is way higher than Greece’s 175 billion and Portugal’s 235 billion euros.
And the banks that are have lent most to Ireland are in Britain – such as the part-nationalised Royal Bank of Scotland – and Germany.