BARCELONA | By Joan Tapia | Last month, I warned about the serious political problem in Spain, which was (and is) focused on the Catalonian crisis and the rise of the new political party Podemos. Both could disrupt the political system and kill off imperfect bipartisanship. Meanwhile, the economy was starting to show some signs of improvement. In November, the perception that the economy is improving while politics are worsening has increased and multiplied. It is difficult to argue with the fact that the economy is going better than last year.
WASHINGTON | By Pablo Pardo | Since the inception of constitutions in modern nation-states, none have undergone such turbulence as those drawn up in Europe. The raison d’être of the European Union is to avoid further turbulence in the future. It is no coincidence that the violent conflicts that have broken out in Europe since World War Two have been outside the EU, in former Yugoslavia, Ukraine, Russia, and Georgia.
MADRID | By JP Marín Arrese | Markets are beginning to feel deeply concerned about the mounting uncertainty the separatist movement in Catalonia has created. Observers do not yet discount a unilateral independence declaration, and are becoming increasingly alarmed at the open challenge to Madrid’s authority. Events could yet spiral out of control and into the unknown.
MADRID | The Corner | There is nothing better than politics to add volatility to the markets. After Catalan leader Artur Mas formally convoked a Nov. 9 referendum for Catalonia independence, the Spanish government is holding an emergency cabinet meeting Monday to launch a lawsuit aimed at blocking the vote. In the short term this clash could widen spreads in Spain and affect domestic banks with exposure to Catalonia, Morgan Stanley pointed out. The most probable scenario is a fiscal agreement, they believe.
MADRID | By Fernando G. Urbaneja | Hundreds of thousands of Catalonians marched for the third year in a row to claim their national sovereignty. The pro-independence way in Catalonia -which comes from a feeling more than a century old and from time to time strongly emerges to fight for its goal- is behind these demonstrations and tries to capitalize them.
MADRID | By J. P. Marín Arrese | Water and power supply would be secured should Catalonia become an independent nation. That’s the only reassuring conclusion the economic think tank set up by the regional government has recently reached. On handling monetary and financial issues, it points to severe problems ahead.