PSI seems to be a success but the public mood is still grim

Tonight is a night of relief for the greek government and EU partners. It appears that PSI participation went well, and the information coming out of Greece is highly optimistic though the official figures will not be released until tomorrow morning.

This deal will allow Greece to reduce its debt by approximately 105 billion euros. This in itself is a great feat. The mood is one of relief but by and large the country is feeling very dark. Unemployment is at 21%. Close to 30% of stores in main commercial street of the Athenian center have closed, taxation is crippling and GDP dropped at a 7% annual rate in the fourth quarter of 2011.

The rest of the unpopular meassures are being implemented and some of the steeper bills will not be presented until after an election which appears will take place in early May.

The political situation is in flux but it also appears that the two largest parties have committed to reform after the elections as well and they may even resume cooperation. PASOK will be electing a new leader soon and it will Evangelos Venizelos who has the exertise to hold it together.

The PSI deal is only the beginning of a very long and painful road to recovery. Thankfully, it is a step in the right direction.

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