Frankfurt has noticed
Germany’s man at the ECB, Jörg Asmussen, during a tough speech in Athens today:
It is difficult to ask voters in a country where average public sector wages are around €1000 per month, like in Estonia or Slovakia, to lend to a country where those wages are on average around €3000. The same holds true for emerging countries outside the euro area who participate in the financial assistance for Greece via the IMF. Some of those even went through very painful but ultimately successful adjustment programmes themselves; take Brazil for example.
Fact: Average earnings per week in the Irish public sector are around €900 (source: CSO employment costs survey). Whether that’s “fair” or “meaningful” is a separate row. The news is that the ECB thinks that it’s high for a country dependent on the kindness of official creditors.