Recovery? Report Says Greece Among World’s “Miserable” Economies

A woman feeds pigeons in central Athens on Wednesday, April 17, 2019.(AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris)

ATHENS – With one eye on coming elections, Prime Minister and Radical Left SYRIZA leader Alexis Tsipras said Greece is recovering from a 9-year-long crisis but it ranks fifth among 11 nations with the most “miserable” economies in the world.

That was in a report from the financial news agency Bloomberg, with Greece faring better than only destitute Venezuela – a corrupt, bankrupt country Tsipras admires – Argentina, South Africa and Turkey.

What these countries have in common, the report said, is “intense economic stress and scant progress in taming price growth and getting people back to work.”

“The Bloomberg Misery Index relies on the age-old concept that low inflation and unemployment generally illustrate how good an economy’s residents should feel,” the report said, adding that this year’s scores are based on Bloomberg economist surveys, while prior years reflect actual data.

Tsipras claimed credit for what he said is a growing recovery after the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) shrank some 25 percent but the debt remains some 178 percent of the country’s income and ability to repay loans.

That’s despite 326 billion euros ($366.84 billion) in three international bailouts, including one for 86 billion euros ($96.77 billion) Tsipras sought and accepted in the summer for 2015.

He said he wouldn’t do that because it came with more crushing austerity measures he swore to reject but then implemented on orders of the Troika of the European Union-European Central Bank-European Stability Mechanism (EU-ECB-ESM.)

He didn’t mention he reneged on anti-austerity vows to help bring a recovery although the country still hasn’t made a full market return after the Aug. 20, 2018 end of the rescue packages.