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Markets welcome Greek rescue deal

Markets welcome Greek rescue deal
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Markets rallied on Friday as euro zone leaders agreed a new 109-billion-euro bailout for Greece.

Stocks rose over the past week in all major European markets on news that the private sector will be asked to contribute voluntarily to the rescue package.

Yet despite the deal to cut Greece’s debt burden, Finance Minister Evangelos Venizelos said planned austerity measures would go ahead.

“It’s a big relief for the Greek economy, and this money will gradually pass on to the real economy,” he said.

“But this relief should in no way mean that we should relax our efforts (on austerity).”

While the politicians in Brussels have welcomed the agreement, people on the streets of Athens are unconvinced.

One 50-year-old woman said: “I believe the crisis will last much longer. We will have problems for many, many years.”

The deal has bought Greece some breathing space. The question now is whether EU leaders have done enough to calm investor fear about the health of the euro zone’s other peripheral economies.