- Marco Rubio: U.S. at social, moral crossroads
- ‘We’re coming for you, Barack Obama’: Top U.S. official discloses threat from ISIL
- White flags baffle NYPD: ‘We’re lucky it wasn’t a bomb’
- N.Y. Gov. Cuomo’s office interfered with, pressured corruption commission: report
- Brit lawmaker: I would fire on Israel if I lived in Gaza
- VA apologizes to forgotten Marine veteran locked in Fla. clinic, forced to call 911
- U.S. social and economic trends on worrisome track, survey finds
- McDonald nomination unanimously referred to full Senate
- Chuck Norris honorary chairman of NRA voter registration campaign
- GOP outraged Obamacare investigators able to get coverage with fake IDs
U.S., Germany stress cooperation to end euro crisis
Question of the Day
BERLIN — U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and his German counterpart stressed the need for coordinated action Monday in the face of the eurozone debt crisis and faltering global growth, but left open what joint steps Europe and the United States would take to shore up the world economy in the coming months.
Geithner traveled to the German North Sea island of Sylt for informal talks with Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble, before heading on to meet Mario Draghi, the president of the European Central Bank, later Monday.
Geithner and Schaeuble praised efforts by Ireland, Portugal, Spain and Italy to turn their debt-ridden economies around, and voiced optimism about economic reforms meant to deepen integration among the 17 eurozone members.
The joint statement made no reference to Greece, which has struggled to implement the reform package agreed with its creditors. The country faces the possibility a chaotic exit from the common currency area if it fails to meet its bailout conditions.
Geithner and Schaeuble “emphasized the need for ongoing international cooperation and coordination” and stated that the U.S. and Germany would “continue to cooperate closely with their partners when advancing the policy agenda in autumn to further stabilize global and European economies.”
Markets surged after Draghi said last Thursday that the ECB would do “whatever it takes” to preserve the euro. Over the following days, the leaders of Germany, France and Italy also said they would do all they can to protect the 17-country currency union — comments that Geithner and Schaeuble’s “took note of,” according to their statement.
Sung Won Sohn, an economics professor at the Martin Smith School of Business at California State University, said the joint Geithner-Schaeuble statement did not offer any new solutions for the European debt crisis.
“The statement doesn’t contain anything new,” Sohn said. “What is important is not the joint statement but what the two officials might have discussed behind the scenes.”
Sohn said that it was very likely that Geithner sought during his one-day visit to Europe to strongly encourage the Europeans to move more aggressively to deal with their debt problems.
“The U.S. economy is getting worse and the main drag on our economy right now is coming from Europe,” Sohn said. “Geithner is trying to get the Europeans to move in the right direction.”
Sohn said, “This is an election year and the Obama administration really can’t do much at home to boost the economy given all the constraints at the moment.”
Though the leaders didn’t pledge any specific action, the comments raised expectations that the ECB might step in to buy Spanish and perhaps Italian government bonds to lower the countries’ borrowing costs, which have been worryingly high in recent weeks. Another possibility might be for the eurozone’s temporary rescue fund, the European Financial Stability Facility, to buy bonds.
In an interview with Monday’s edition of the German daily Sueddeutsche Zeitung, Jean-Claude Juncker — the Luxembourg prime minister who chairs meetings of the eurozone finance ministers, or eurogroup — said that officials have no time to lose and will decide in the coming days what measures to take.
Juncker said the rescue fund and eurozone countries would coordinate with the ECB — “and we will, as Draghi says, see results.” But he also said: “It still has to be decided what exactly we will do when. That depends on the developments of the coming days and how fast we have to react.”
TWT Video Picks
The subsidies are a hit with patients who don't exist
- Democratic Sen. John Walsh plagiarized War College master's thesis: report
- CARSON: Costco and the perils of mixing politics and business
- 'We're coming for you, Barack Obama': Top U.S. official discloses threat from ISIL terrorists
- Netanyahu's Wikipedia page replaced with giant Palestinian flag
- Obama orders Pentagon advisers to Ukraine
- Obama says public not familiar enough with issues
- House task force to recommend National Guard on border, faster deportations
- Hezbollah warring in Syria could join fight against Israel
- Tom Petty: 'No one's got Christ more wrong than the Christians'
- Hamas orders civilians to die in Israeli airstrikes
Obama's biggest White House 'fails'
Celebrities turned politicians
Athletes turned actors
20 gadgets that changed the world
Fighting in Iraq