Eurozone Crisis by the Numbers

The upheaval in the Eurozone is dominating the G20 agenda, global news coverage, and the attention of uneasy investors. However, it is surprising that such a major crisis is receiving relatively limited multimedia treatment. Here's my weekly take on what's out there.

Contagion Explained
The absolute most useful breakdown of the Eurozone crisis that I've come across, multimedia or otherwise, was published by the New York Times. "It's All Connected: An Overview of the Euro Crisis" provides a visually compelling, intuitive, and much-needed breakdown of individual countries' debt exposure. Illustrations like these go much farther than any text publication can towards providing a comprehensive understanding of the threat of contagion within the region, as well as potential global implications. An incredible piece of work.

Haircuts and Recapitalization
Reuters' "Breaking views Eurozone bank stress test" is another extremely useful tool, which calculates the potential implications of raising core capital ratio requirements and reducing the face value of bond holdings. You can test out the latest plan cooked up by EU leaders, or administer your own stress test to find out how banks hold up and how much recapitalization would cost.

Single Currency, Different Problems
Another great interactive data display is the BBC's "In graphics: The eurozone's crisis", which looks at the 17 Eurozone countries and the UK's deficit, GDP, unemployment rates, and debt-to-GDP ratios. This comparative perspective illustrates just what makes the PIIGS (Portugal, Italy, Ireland, Greece, and Spain) the troublemakers of the eurozone. It also brings into focus the fact that the ailments of each of these countries is quite unique and that a one-size-fits all approach to addressing their problems will not suffice.

Keeping it Current
It's really too bad that this BBC interactive hasn't been updated since 2010. One of the most challenging aspects of creating interactive content about ongoing developments is the expectation of providing a 'living' resource which users can continue to turn to. This takes resources and commitment if you don't want to end up with an outdated publication. At the very least, it requires a publication date and perhaps an archive date indicating that it is in fact outdated. Give Ireland a break, will you?

This is what we at the Council on Foreign Relations try to do with our feature multimedia resources, including Crisis Guide: The Global Economy, which was recently updated to feature ongoing developments in the eurozone.

Greek Debt Crisis in 4 Minutes
Finally, on a lighter note, for an entertaining account of the Greek Debt Crisis, check out this video from vlogbrothers:

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