Neil Unmack is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist based in London. He covers credit markets, hedge funds, and Italy. Previously he was a corporate finance reporter at Bloomberg News in London. He started his career as a financial journalist in 2001 at Euromoney Institutional Investor, where he covered structured finance for EuroWeek magazine. He was educated at Eton College and Oxford University, graduating with a first class degree in modern languages. Follow Neil on Twitter @unmack1
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The left-wing coalition may win the elections in Greece on Jan. 25. Its plans for debt relief and the end of austerity would put Athens on a collision course with its euro zone lenders. No one has interest in a messy “Grexit” - and the risks of a mess are fairly priced.
The country’s long-term shareholders could soon enjoy extra voting rights. This may tempt family firms to float and enable more privatisations. Yet Italy’s markets need more dynamism, not less. The days when a few corporate powerbrokers called the shots were meant to be over.
The ECB’s bond-buying programme may leave national central banks on the hook for potential defaults. The goal is to soothe German fears on subsidising weaker countries. Sceptics see a fissure in the monetary union. The fears are exaggerated, but perceptions matter.
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