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Greece and Puerto Rico in 5 Stats

Ian Bremmer, Ph.D

By Ian Bremmer (original source LinkedIn Pulse) 

“Puerto Rico and Greece are very different economies with a common problem: They exist within larger monetary systems that reduce the options available to manage their respective crises. Here are 5 stats that explain the similar paths these economies have followed, and why they will ultimately diverge.

Where it All Went Wrong

Use of the dollar gives Puerto Rico certain advantages. The bonds that Puerto Rico sells are exempt from local, state and federal taxes, making them particularly appealing to investors. Even when Puerto Rico’s economy started sliding in 2006, this exemption allowed it to continue borrowing cheaply. Unfortunately, the $72 billion it now owes, the equivalent of 70 percent of its GDP, exceeds the debt of every US state except California and New York.”

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