Greece’s radical left could kill off austerity in the EU | Owen Jones

If Syriza wins a possible snap poll in the new year, positive repercussions could be felt across Europe

Another war looms in Europe: waged not with guns and tanks, but with financial markets and EU diktats. Austerity-ravaged Greece may well be on the verge of a general election that could bring to power a government unequivocally opposed to austerity. Momentous stuff: that has not happened in the six years of cuts and falling living standards that followed the collapse of Lehman Brothers.

But if the radical leftist party Syriza does indeed triumph in a possible snap poll in the new year, there will undoubtedly be a concerted attempt to choke the experiment at birth. That matters not just for Greece, but for all of us who want a different sort of society and a break from years of austerity.

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British consumer confidence at four-year high, research finds

Lloyds Bank spending report shows people’s positivity towards their financial situation is highest since 2011

Consumers’ confidence in their financial situation is at its highest in at least four years, boding well for a brightening economy in 2015. According to the Lloyds Bank Spending Power Report, people’s sentiment towards their personal situation in November was at its highest since the survey began in 2011, with London the most positive region and Scotland the least.

Consumer confidence has reached its highest score since the start of the index, climbing by three points since October to reach an overall score of 154.

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UK jobs market set for upbeat 2015 but skills shortage remains

CBI expects increase in permanent jobs and modest pay rises, but the lobby group said employers are worried about skills and regulation

As the economic recovery continues, 50% of British businesses are planning to take on extra workers in 2015, the CBI said, but skills shortage could stop jobs being filled.

All regions of the UK stand to benefit according to the business lobby group, while Scotland has the biggest plans for the job creation.

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