Speaking Of Null…

Zero, that is.

Debt

Germany May Abandon Its Beloved Black Zero – Chancellor Angela Merkel is still clinging to her policy of a balanced budget, but it is becoming increasingly clear that Germany’s economic downturn could soon usher in a return to deficit spending…

For years now, a balanced federal budget, known here in Germany as the “schwarze Null,” or black zero, without any fresh borrowing, has been a permanent fixture of German fiscal policy. After four decades of chronic borrowing to finance the German national budget, the shift stood for the renunciation of the debt state and became a symbol of sound policy. But now the issue is the subject of debate again — not only due to expensive political plans, but also the threat of a recession in Germany…

“We can accomplish the tasks at hand without accruing new debt.”

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German Of The Day: Milliardenloch

That means a billion-euro hole. You know, as in the ones that will be appearing in the coming German federal budgets?

Loch

The money has been rolling in to Berlin for years but it looks like those days are about to end. Germany’s current finance minister, Olaf Scholz (SPD), warns that the government will be missing some 25 billion euros by 2023. No new expenditures possible, folks. Not unless there are cuts somewhere else. Right. Good luck with that, pal. You’re with the SPD, for crying out loud (that stands for Spend other People’s Dough).

And it sure would be a shocker if Germany now used this as an excuse not to live up to its defense spending commitments, wouldn’t it? See how this works, folks?

Nach Jahren sprudelnder Steuereinnahmen droht dem Bund wegen der abflauenden Konjunktur ein 25-Milliarden-Loch im Haushalt bis 2023.

German Budget Surplus Offers German Politicians Further Ways Not To Spend It

The dramatic growth in Germany’s public sector surplus over the first half means the government has extra room for manoeuvre, Finance Minister Olaf Scholz said on Friday after data was released showing the surplus at a record high.

Scholz

“I’ll be looking into as many ways as possible not to spend any of it,” he said. Or could have said. And this is social democrat, too. This savings mania is a German thang.

And saving money is generally a very sound idea, I understand that. But how about considering giving that surplus back to the people you took it from in the first place? I’m just saying.

Der FDP-Politiker Dürr verlangte angesichts der hohen Überschüsse, den Solidaritätszuschlag abzuschaffen. Auch der Bund der Steuerzahler forderte eine Entlastung der Bürger.

EU + Brexit = 3.5+ For Germany

That’s 3.5 billion more. Euros. To pay, I mean. Annually.

Oettinger

Somebody has to compensate for the Brexit shortfall and Greece won’t answer the phone. Nor will Italy, France or anybody else out there. Maybe the EU dream team back then should have tried a little harder to keep Britain in and compromised just that little tiny bit more but hey, that was then and this is now. Get out your checkbook, Berlin.

What a mess.

Konkret sprach Oettinger gegenüber der Bild-Zeitung von “mindestens 3 oder 3,5 Milliarden Euro” jährlich. Zu den neuen Aufgaben gehörten etwa der Schutz der Außengrenzen oder der Kampf gegen Terror. Zudem könnten zusätzliche Zahlungen Deutschlands dazu beitragen, die durch den Austritt Großbritanniens aus der EU entstehende Lücke zu schließen.

Let’s Do The Math

Yeah, that makes sense. When Britain does it’s Brexit thing and leaves the EU the money they’ve been pumping into it all these years will stop coming in.

Brexit

That means the remaining countries – like Germany – will have to make up for this. OK. Are you still with me here? Good. Now can you tell me why this is supposed to be a news item? You should have worried about this before you failed to compromise with them and let them get away in the first place.

Of the expected 10.2 billion euros that will be permanently missing in the EU budget after the Brexit, Germany will most likely have to come up with an additional 3.8 billion annually if the general conditions remain the same.

Von den voraussichtlich netto 10,2 Milliarden Euro, die im EU-Haushalt nach dem Brexit dauerhaft fehlen würden, müsste Deutschland bei unveränderten Rahmenbedingungen rund 3,8 Milliarden Euro übernehmen.

Der Spiegel: Republicans End Amerika As We Know It

Uh, that’s bad, right?

Republicans

America’s Republicans have emerged again as a crazed mob. The conservatives have stubbornly voted for the shutdown and against their own leadership. In doing so, they are only thinking of their own careers and not about their party.

Wow. That’s kind of touching. I honestly had no idea that Der Spiegel was so concerned about the Republican Party up until now.

Amerikas Republikaner erscheinen mal wieder wie ein wildgewordener Haufen. Die Konservativen stimmen stur für den Shutdown und gegen die eigene Führung. Dabei denken sie nur an ihre Karriere und nicht an die Partei.