10.48am: Ladbrokes, the UK betting group, has today suspended betting on Greece exiting the euro by the end of the year.
A Ladbrokes spokesman just told me that they took the decision after a steady stream of bets from punters, looking to profit from a Grexit. Ladbrokes had been offering 4-6 yesterday (so a €6 bet would return €4, plus the stake), but cut it to 1-3 this morning. He explained:
While we’re not sure what is going on in Greece, it is safer for us to suspend betting rather than keep cutting the odds.
Apparently, Ladbrokes would have paid out on a government statement that Athens was pulling out of the euro, rather than the actual reissuing of the drachma.
Perhaps the IMF should have wagered its $600bn firewall on a Greek euro exit while it had the chance…
UPDATE: At the risk of leading you all astray, Paddy Power are still taking bets.
Ladbrokes out but Paddy Power still taking bets on Grexit, still odds *against* 6-4 paddypower.com/bet?action=go_…
— P M (@Pawelmorski) May 10, 2012
10.32am: Greek unemployment hit a new record high of 21.7% in February, data released this morning showed.
The Hellenic Statistical Authority reported that the percentage of people out of work rose again, from 21.3% in January 2012. In February 2010, the jobless rate was 15.2%.
The youth unemployment crisis also deepened, with 53.8% of 15-24 year olds now out of work.
The headline jobless figure also shows a gender imbalance, with 25.7% of females out of work and 18.6% of males.
In another blow to the battered Greek economy, its industrial output slumped by 8.5% year-on-year in March – a decline that accelerated from February’s -8.3% figure.
Sent in by Steve
Greece Hurtles To Eurozone Exit
The marriage of Greece and the euro zone is doomed—and the divorce may turn out to be a “quickie.”
Chances of the two patching up their differences diminished further after Greek voters May 6 overwhelmingly rejected austerity, propelling the country headlong into political uncertainty, jeopardizing its financial bailout, and putting it on a fast track toward the exit. (Barrons)
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