European Restructuring Monitor Quarterly - 2011, Issue 4

Hurley J, Riso S, Salvatore L, Rinawi M, Broughton A |  Issue 4, Winter | European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions | Dec 2011

Consensus forecasts were pointing to slowing growth in the EU during 2012, with some at least indicating a return to recession. Sovereign debt issues in a growing number of Member States – the response to them and anxieties regarding their eventual resolution – were one important contributing factor.

The decision of the European Central Bank (ECB) to make available nearly 500 billion euros to the banking system in December 2011 appeared to have bought some time to develop a more lasting solution.

However, downgrades of sovereign debt in nine Member States by rating agency Standard & Poor once again underlined the fragility of the common currency. General sentiment remained volatile amid fears of a new second phase of the Great Recession of 2008–9...