WSJ: Debt Burdens Hobble Euro Zone
Governments Struggle to Service Obligations Amid a Sluggish Recovery and Pressure From Markets
The prospect of prolonged economic malaise in Europe's most debt-laden countries could undercut the continent's economy as a whole and linger for years, economists warn, even if European officials manage to solve Greece's immediate funding crisis.
Massive interest payments that countries such as Greece must make to service their debts will likely constrain spending in other areas that could help boost their economies.
Meanwhile, investors may balk at buying government bonds without a hefty premium that would saddle the countries with even more debt. The countries can't devalue their currencies to help cope, as they could before joining the euro zone with its shared currency.