Greece Edges Toward Another Crisis as Bailout Quarrel Persists
Greece is set to miss yet another deadline for unlocking bailout funds this week, edging closer to a repeat of the 2015 drama that pushed Europe's most indebted state to the edge of economic collapse.... While Tsipras had promised the long delayed review of the latest bailout would be completed by March 20, a European official said last week that reaching an agreement even in April is now considered a long shot.
... The two sides are still far apart on reforms demanded by creditors in the Greek energy market and the government in Athens is resisting calls for additional pension cuts. And while discussions continue on how to overhaul the labor market, a finance ministry official said in an email to reporters on Friday that the issue can't be solved in talks with technocrats.
... Even as Greek bonds have performed better than most of its euro-area peers this year on expectations that the government will capitulate, uncertainty has weighed on economic activity, raising the risk that an additional bailout may be needed. Unemployment rose in the last quarter of 2016, the economy unexpectedly contracted, and a bleeding of deposits from the nation's battered lenders resumed.