History 102 Term Paper

3493 WordsJul 21, 201514 Pages
The 2003-2007 real estate boom which led to the eventual 2008 meltdown of the U.S. financial markets unfortunately was not contained to the big banks and investment firms based mostly in New York City. By the time bailouts were implemented by the United States government, the effects of the financial crisis were exported to Europe. States similar, but not limited to Portugal, Ireland, Italy, Greece, and Spain (PIIGS) have each been in the media spotlight in recent years as attempts to rescue their respective financial markets are implemented. Unfortunately, many efforts made by Eurozone member states and other international actors have failed in alleviating the financial stresses of the region. Considering this, then, is there really a permanent solution that can not only relieve financial markets but also prevent the crises from spreading? To date, the European Unions’ collective response up to this point has been insufficient in order to curb the further slide into Europe’s second recession. I contend, then, that Europe and the Euro would greatly benefit from following many if not all of Germany’s internal budgetary constraints in order to fix the overall problem of debt and spending. One of original intentions of the euro when it was established in 1992 was to limit the amount of budget deficit a sovereign member state could have. Furthermore, the euro was designed to prevent a “bailout” should a state be unable to meet its debt obligations. Consequently, the euro indirectly served as a scare tactic for member states to “pay their bills” or face a default. However, as the credit boom of 2003 – 2007 fueled sky-rocketing prices on homes, bonds, and other commodities, Eurozone states confidently increased spending. Unfortunately, spending was done almost completely on credit and revenue speculation. As the financial markets in the United States began to crumble,

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