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Continued concerns over Europe’s sovereign debt hit equity markets hard last week, leading the S&P 500 to lose a little more than 2 percent in a volatile week.

Italy’s borrowing costs have become dangerously close to unsustainable levels, in what looks to be a contagion effect in the region. This is precisely what the European Union and the International Monetary Fund were hoping to avoid by helping Greece, Portugal, and Ireland.

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