If You're Waiting For An "Economic Collapse", Just Look At What Is Happening To Europe

Tyler Durden's picture

Submitted by Michael Snyder of The Economic Collapse blog,

If you are anxiously awaiting the arrival of the "economic collapse", just open up your eyes and look at what is happening in Europe.  The entire continent is a giant economic mess right now.  Unemployment and poverty levels are setting record highs, car sales are setting record lows, and there is an ocean of bad loans and red ink everywhere you look.  Over the past several years, most of the attention has been on the economic struggles of Greece, Spain and Portugal and without a doubt things continue to get even worse in those nations. 

But in 2014 and 2015, Italy and France will start to take center stage.  France has the 5th largest economy on the planet, and Italy has the 9th largest economy on the planet, and at this point both of those economies are rapidly falling to pieces.  Expect both France and Italy to make major headlines throughout the rest of 2014.  I have always maintained that the next major wave of the economic collapse would begin in Europe, and that is exactly what is happening.  The following are just a few of the statistics that show that an "economic collapse" is happening in Europe right now...

-The unemployment rate in the eurozone as a whole is still sitting at an all-time record high of 12.1 percent.

-It Italy, the unemployment rate has soared to a brand new all-time record high of 12.7 percent.

-The youth unemployment rate in Italy has jumped up to 41.6 percent.

-The level of poverty in Italy is now the highest that has ever been recorded.

-Many analysts expect major economic trouble in Italy over the next couple of years.  The President of Italy is openly warning of "widespread social tension and unrest" in his nation in 2014.

-Citigroup is projecting that Italy's debt to GDP ratio will surpass 140 percent by the year 2016.

-Citigroup is projecting that Greece's debt to GDP ratio will surpass 200 percent by the year 2016.

-Citigroup is projecting that the unemployment rate in Greece will reach 32 percent in 2015.

-The unemployment rate in Spain is still sitting at an all-time record high of 26.7 percent.

-The youth unemployment rate in Spain is now up to 57.7 percent - even higher than in Greece.

-The percentage of bad loans in Spain has risen for eight straight months and recently hit a brand new all-time record high of 13 percent.

-The number of mortgage applications in Spain has fallen by 90 percent since the peak of the housing boom.

-The unemployment rate in France has risen for 9 quarters in a row and recently soared to a new 16 year high.

-For 2013, car sales in Europe were on pace to hit the lowest yearly level ever recorded.

-Deutsche Bank, probably the most important bank in Germany, is the most highly leveraged bank in Europe (60 to 1) and it has approximately 70 trillion dollars worth of exposure to derivatives.

Europe truly is experiencing an economic nightmare, and it is only going to get worse.

It would be hard to put into words the extreme desperation that unemployed workers throughout Europe are feeling right now.  When you can't feed your family and you can't find work no matter how hard you try, it can be absolutely soul crushing.

To get an idea of the level of desperation in Spain, check out the following anecdote from a recent NPR article...

Having trouble wrapping your head around southern Europe's staggering unemployment problem?


Look no further than a single Ikea furniture store on Spain's Mediterranean coast.


The plans to open a new megastore next summer near Valencia. On Monday, Ikea's started taking applications for 400 jobs at the new store.

The company wasn't prepared for what came next.


Within 48 hours, more than 20,000 people had applied online for those 400 jobs. The volume crashed Ikea's computer servers in Spain.

Of course that should kind of remind you of what I wrote about yesterday.  We are starting to see this kind of intense competition for low paying jobs in the United States as well.

As global economic conditions continue to deteriorate, things are going to get even tougher for those on the low end of the economic food chain.  Poverty rates are going to soar, even in areas where you might not expect it to happen.  In fact, one new report discovered that poverty has already been rising steadily in Germany, which is supposed to be the strongest economy in the entire eurozone...

A few days before the Christmas holidays, the Joint Welfare Association published a report on the regional development of poverty in Germany in 2013 titled “Between prosperity and poverty—a test to breaking point”. The report refutes the official propaganda that Germany has remained largely unaffected by the crisis and is a haven of prosperity in Europe.


According to the report, poverty in Germany has “reached a sad record high”. Entire cities and regions have been plunged into ever deeper economic and social crisis. “The social and regional centrifugal forces, as measured by the spread of incomes, have increased dramatically in Germany since 2006,” it says. Germany faces “a test to breaking point.”

Of course poverty continues to explode on this side of the Atlantic Ocean as well.  In the United States, the poverty rate has been at 15 percent or above for three years in a row.  That is the first time that this has happened since the 1960s.

And this is just the beginning.  The extreme recklessness of European banks such as Deutsche Bank and U.S. banks such as JPMorgan Chase, Citibank and Goldman Sachs is eventually going to cause a financial catastrophe far worse than what we experienced back in 2008.

When that crisis arrives, the flow of credit is going to freeze up dramatically and economic activity will grind to a standstill.  Unemployment, poverty and all of our current economic problems will become much, much worse.

So as bad as things are right now, the truth is that this is nothing compared to what is coming.

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Kirk2NCC1701's picture

Fleshwound!  I've had worse.

stocktivity's picture

Obama comes home from 15 days of golf in Hawaii and starts hearing shit about Obama Care and taxpayers getting stuck paying for Michelle's extended vacation. What happens next??? Crispy Cream Cris Christie takes all the heat off Obama. Barrack must be absolutely giddy tonight.

WayBehind's picture

Young people in Spain, Greece, Europe, US and other "developed" countries are lazy generation with socialistic attitude looking for a free ride. Thats why the youth unemployment is so high.

malikai's picture

This kind of unemployment is bullish for black markets.

WayBehind's picture

I never said the job situation in Spain and Greece is great. All I know is that 60% youth unemployment in Spain is a BS. Its much easier to collect unemployment than to hassle working a low paying job. After all, the "cheap" labor from eastern Europe is not having difficulties finding entry level jobs in Spain. Just go and look for yourself!

i_call_you_my_base's picture

Do I have to state the obvious and say that there are no jobs to get? Look at this article, there are thousands of people applying for hundreds of jobs. Your biases are clouding your vision. It's math, not "all you know."

myblueshades's picture

Young people in Spain, Greece, Europe, US and other "developed" countries are lazy generation with socialistic attitude looking for a free ride. Thats why the youth unemployment is so high.

National Socialistic attitude?


No broken windows, no burning cars..

Can you guess which book is flying up the Amazon charts?

Pro-tip, It aint Marx.

i-dog's picture

Nationalism is the best thing that could happen to the European Soviet States that are currently ruled by the Brussels Politburo.

BUT the people need to be careful to avoid being manipulated into supporting populist demagogues who will ALSO be financed and directed by the 'Marxist shadows behind the curtain'. Just because a popular leader SAYS he is independent of the globalists, doesn't mean that he IS independent of the globalists. Note who he associates with and what globalist groups he participates in.

BoNeSxxx's picture

Precisely.  First an economic union (itself unthinkable just 20 years ago) followed by a political union (never let a good crisis go to waste). 

It's been in the script since the 1950's.

Time is running out for the once sovereign nations of Europe to regain what they once took for granted.

WarriorClass's picture

"In what can only be described as the most flagrantly racial appointment (and clearest example of Obama's War on White America) of his career, NAACP Legal Defense Official Debo P. Adegbile has been nominated to head the Department of Justice Civil Rights Division as an assistant attorney general. [Obama Nominates Cop Killer Advocate to Head DOJ Civil Rights Division, Townhall.com, 1-8-14]:"

Knockout game indeed.




myblueshades's picture

I'll go in for a bit of casual racism. Everyone else seems to be at it.

If everyone remembers that this divide & rule bullshit is part of the same old scam, maybe the world can learn to appreciate the differences in cultures & races, rather than this Marxist attempt at mixing everything/one up into a murky brown proletarian stew. Funny how 'multi-culturalism' is by definition genocide. both are lost, what. I can't believe I didn't see it until recently. Anyway, on with the shoah..


*Bonus hatred & intolerance*




by Rudyard Kipling





It was not part of their blood,


It came to them very late,


With long arrears to make good,


When the Saxon began to hate.




They were not easily moved,


They were icy -- willing to wait


Till every count should be proved,


Ere the Saxon began to hate.




Their voices were even and low.


Their eyes were level and straight.


There was neither sign nor show


When the Saxon began to hate.




It was not preached to the crowd.


It was not taught by the state.


No man spoke it aloud


When the Saxon began to hate.




It was not suddently bred.


It will not swiftly abate.


Through the chilled years ahead,


When Time shall count from the date


That the Saxon began to hate.



JohnnyBriefcase's picture

It doesn't matter how many times you state this, people always default back to their preconceived notions of us and them. It isn't their fault, it's been programmed into them their whole life. It takes serious strength to abandon these divisive notions and see who is pulling the strings.

Once seen, your whole world-view changes and not for the better so...


GO (insert sports/political team here)!!

myblueshades's picture

Agreed. I suspect the whole Golden Dawn fiasco in Greece will generate lots of good PR for Nationalism generally. But who the fuck knows right? The mainstream media cant be trusted in the slightest, bloggers & 'Informed commenters' like our good selves are equally untrustworthy & agenda laden.

I held my breath for 3 years or more waiting for the big collapse. If the whole thing is as top heavy & precarious as Tyler would have us believe, it would have been kicked over by someone by now. The whole show is a complete farce. 

The up and coming young digital natives have more knowledge & information to draw from than anyone in all history, they can locate & dissimilate it in the time it takes us old bastards to find the Home button. But they are also pasty, pencil armed faggots who sit about all day waiting for that mythical high paying job that involves staying indoors out of the weather & utilising their over developed X-box thumbs.

At least Obama had the good sense to make his drone army work from Playstation controllers.

Shrewd move that.

i-dog's picture


"it would have been kicked over by someone by now"

Be patient! They're still building the chaos for their "Ordo ab Chao" (order out of chaos...coined by the Jesuit Illuminati 228 years ago).

I don't wish to disappoint you, but there will be no "reset". They have a plan for centralised world domination, not a "Mad Max"-style crash and splinter. DHS is being "tooled up" to contain any "irrational exuberance" in the US.

I'd be hard-pressed to find a single country (Syria and Iran excluded) that is not currently controlled by a small clique-in-waiting, with their hands already on the local throttles, that is not "in on" the globalist gig.

Lore's picture

Re: "...pasty, pencil armed faggots who sit about all day waiting for that mythical high paying job that involves staying indoors out of the weather & utilising their over developed X-box thumbs..."


AAAAUGH. I could go on all night. They wouldn't even be happy living in a cave, because rubbing sticks to start a fire WOULD RELEASE "CARBON EMISSIONS." BRAINWASHED, ANDROGYNOUS, COLLECTIVIST CLOWNS, RIPE FOR HARVEST.

TahoeBilly2012's picture

Jewish monetary "debt paradise"! Stop complaining. Have a beer and turn on the TV.

the tower's picture

You can also create your own job. I know plenty of people in southern europe that are auto-didact in programming. 

Of course, since you make more money in other countries they leave. But still, they found a job.


I do agree that we will never have enough work for everyone, this is nothing new though. Already in the 70's this was clear.

We are beyond the tipping point, and no war will ever bring back prosperity like WW1 and WW2 did.

So, the next step will be even more automation and robotics, and a basic income, which will replace the benefits system in the West.


Just hang in there, it will happen sooner than you think. Meanwhile, educate yourself, and don't be afraid to sweat.

Tall Tom's picture

Twenty Thousand Applications for 400 jobs at Ikea...


I hope that you convince many of your proposition.  Really I do.


The violence will not be directed at the Ghettos and slums this time around.


Rockets fly over Gated Communty walls. The Middle Class has marketable skills, science education, and knowledge. They are the masses whom will be starving. They know where the wealth is and whom have wrongfully gained.


It is just far too easy to build rockets and explosives.


I'd sure hate to live in the Hamptons. I'd sure hate to relocate to some "Island Paradise" which is so easy to cut off from trade. Look at Cuba..


Enjoy your inferno. Enjoy the Hell which you serve to create.


Collapse baby collapse.

ElvisDog's picture

I know a woman who was born and grew up in Spain. She told me that the Spanish don't really want to work. What they want to do is eat, drink, and fuck.

Lore's picture

Ummm... That actually sounds pretty good.

EastCoast90's picture

Don't we all want to do those things?

foxenburg's picture

@waybehind  "After all, the "cheap" labor from eastern Europe is not having difficulties finding entry level jobs in Spain. Just go and look for yourself!"


That's a silly thing to say. I live in Spain. Many of the young Spaniards I know have pushed off to Germany or South America looking for work. There is no cheap labour "not having difficulties finding entry level jobs". There are no spare entry level jobs to find. What is your source for this nonsense, which is hurtful for the millions of hapless youngsters struggling quite heroically, in my opinion?

the tower's picture

Actually, many young Spaniards are off to Germany to find decent jobs. There is plenty of work in Spain, but it's done by low wage workers from Eastern Europe and North Africa, stuff that the Spanish won't do, same for Greece.

On the other hand, the figures are rigged. The Spanish government is using the figures to get out of paying their fair share to the EU after years of being on the receiving end. Idem dito for Greece.

Spain, Portugal and Greece have been the poorest of European countries, together with Ireland, but since the introduction of the Euro and the economic policies that followed - easy credit - they became "rich".

Austerity is showing where we really are: living within our means. Which boils down to Spain, Portugal and Greece still being poor.

Of course, if QE would be stopped then there would be money flowing from the rich to set up shop in these countries, to invest in businesses etc.

So it's a bit of a mixed bag, but it's not as bad as it seems.

the tower's picture


The same is happening in the UK: many young, educated Brits cannot find a job, at the same time many southern europeans come in and do find jobs. And not any job: well paying tech jobs, management jobs and financial jobs.

The problem is really that many young people in the UK are not educated for the market, there's no fit, so companies look elsewhere. This is why many educated Brits are working in supermarkets or live on benefits. 


yogibear's picture

Black market for weapons. The governments have a tough time ignoring armed protestors.

Tall Tom's picture

I do not know what you are talking about...Shhhhhhh...

BLOTTO's picture

Hey, as long as the Queen bee is warm...the workers dont matter.


'Our thighs pack with wax, our mouths with honey,

We bring it to the hives, and, like the bees,

Are murdered for our pains.'

- 2 Henry IV, i.v 4

Yes_Questions's picture



so, no moar brazilians for the mrs?


gmrpeabody's picture

"Young people in Spain, Greece, Europe, US and other "developed" countries are lazy generation with socialistic attitude looking for a free ride. Thats why the youth unemployment is so high."

There is much truth to that..., and much sadness.

These kids are so stupid, they don't know what they're in for.

Of course, it's not just their fault, but...

Tall Tom's picture

It is really not their fault that there are no job opportunities. It is both the Fiscal Policies of the Federal Government, the mandates, and the Monetary Policy of the Federal Reserve.


When they get rid of the ACA and stop QE then maybe the rich will reopen shop and start up small businesses again.


Until then they will take the guaranteed gains in the Financial Markets. Why have the headache of running a business when you get 30% Gains in the Stock Market? You cannot get that by running a business and hiring employees.

Lore's picture

Perceptive. We're witnessing the last gasp of the "Something For Nothing" cult.

kaiserhoff's picture

Solid article but poor context.

Unemployment checks are forever in Europe.  There is nothing like the urgency, even panic to get a job that long term unemployed Americans face, and yes, it affects incentives.  The data base is helpful, but we need to examine pressure points.

hungrydweller's picture

They are now forever in Amerika as well; just one 99 week extension after another!

G.O.O.D's picture

That is wrong, 99 weeks is all there is..then it is over. All they voted on was to keep the 99 weeks going, not to do a restart and give everyone another 99 weeks.

Lore's picture

That's why the jobs numbers are so stupid. Another 1.x million people disappeared from the work force on January 1, and that's spun as "RECOVERY."

mjcOH1's picture

"That is wrong, 99 weeks is all there is..then it is over."

Then it's on to Disability for life and the EBT.

disabledvet's picture

there is no "mass of humanity" anymore. How does one "exploit" when one has no "persons" anymore? worse still..."there is a land mass" there...it sits not just devoid of human life...but empty period. "not even sheep or cow." my supposition is that "the Americans are not going to fill the void" because we have always had the same problem over here..."a huge void" called "the Great Plains" or "property" in general that simply lies vacant. And we solved this problem...mostly with cattle actually...although to some extent with horses and "cowboys." this time around we have oil wells and natural gas plays. "and drilling so deep it causes earthquakes." we did have inflation...once.

Fíréan's picture

Unemployment checks are NOT for ever in Europe !

For  example in the Netherlands  the duration of unemployment benefit is a minimum term of 3 months and a maximum term of 38 months.( During this time  one is required to look for work and show proof of application). The duration of unemployment benefit  depends upon how long one had been in employment prior to becoming unemployed. The benefit  is 75% of your last earned wage for the first two months of unemployment and then 70% thereafter depending on your circumstances.


Not My Real Name's picture

38 months * 4.33 weeks/month = 164.5 weeks of unemployment bennies. Not too shabby. With that kind of safety net, there is little incentive to start looking for the first two years.

rubiconsolutions's picture

@WayBehind - it may be that they are sick and tired of paying for assholes who are riding their coattails in retirement, paying to meet the promises that the older generation voted themselves. Yeah, no sarc tag by the way.

Haus-Targaryen's picture

Gas yourself you shitboomer. 

johnconnor's picture

of course old timer, nobody is more hard working than the me-me babyboomer generation that have destroyed any future for their kids and grandkids

Haus-Targaryen's picture

The boomers did to the nation in 40 years what the British, Canadians, British again, Mexicans, Confederates, Spanish, Germans, Germans again, Japanese, Soviets, Vietnamiese, Koreans, and Allah Ak Bar have spent hundreds of years doing - destroying the USA.   

Harbanger's picture

In truth, 1/2 the boomers were stoned, much like people are now.  It was 50yrs of liberal policies, with their big gov solutions to justice, social engineering and multiculturalism. 

willwork4food's picture

WTF are you young dudes talking about? Do you actually believe that all boomers had it fucking easy?? Are you fucking shitting me? Leave your divide & conquer empiricial contrived garbage out on the curb with your mom's old lamps. Not many of us were Mike Milikens or greed is gooders. Fucking wake up. I lived in my van for months, lived in a 12x60 trailer without central heat or AC in my 20's. I was dirt fucking poor before that and many of the people i knew were too. The damn smartphone you're glued to was created by one of the baby boomers. Do something about the situation you're in and stop blaming your parents!

Haus-Targaryen's picture

No, but you guys elected one corrupt government after another, and GOD FORBID someone talk financial sense and want to cut SS and Medicare, because herp derp you paid into the system.  Therefore, you should have us pay for you so the thing goes bankrupt on us after you all are dead.  


The boomer generation was handed the best and most powerful nation on the planet.  You boomers have turned inthis into a leapor colony full of debtors.  Thanks for that. 

El Vaquero's picture


No, but you guys elected one corrupt government after another...

Aaaaaand that hasn't stopped now that the next generations are voting.  I might remind you that today, we have the teleprompter-in-chief in the oval office.  Trust me, Gen X and the Millennials would do the same thing as the boomers if put into the same position that the boomers were.  You can bitch and whine about what the boomers did all day long.  In the end, it's just contributing to a division that is not needed. 

Lore's picture

If the new generation of voters is so exceptional, why then is there no call for less government largesse? 

Joe A's picture

"and stop blaming your parents!"

That is exactly what your generation did! They got the blame for everything from the baby boomers. Now you get a 'cooky of your own dough' and you shout 'no fair!'. (I agree with you that not all people from the baby boom generation had it all that good, I trash here that '1968' people)

G.O.O.D's picture

Idiot, is nothing more than fiat faliure that happens no matter who is alive at the time.



In 1932, Argentina had the eighth largest economy in the world before its currency collapsed. In 1992, Finland, Italy, and Norway had currency shocks that spread through Europe.

In 1994, Mexico went through the infamous “Tequila Hangover,” which sent the peso tumbling and spread economic hardships throughout Latin America.

In 1997, the Thai baht fell through the floor and the effects spread to Malaysia, the Philippines, Indonesia, Hong Kong, and South Korea.

Post-World War I Weimar Germany was one of the greatest periods of hyperinflation that ever existed. The Treaty of Versailles was essentially a financial punishment placed on Germany to make reparations.

The sums of money to be paid by Germany were enormous, and the only way it could make repayment was by running the printing press. (Huge unpayable debt — that sounds familiar. I wonder what the solution in the U.S. will be.)

Inflation got so bad in this period that German citizens were literally using stacks of marks to heat their furnaces. Here is a brief timeline of the marks per one U.S. dollar exchange rate:

April 1919: 12 marks

November 1921: 263 marks

January 1923: 17,000 marks

August 1923: 4.621 million marks

October 1923: 25.26 billion marks

December 1923: 4.2 trillion marks.

In present times, we have Zimbabwe, which was once considered the breadbasket of Africa and was one of the wealthiest countries on the continent. Now Mugabe’s attempts at price controls, combined with hyperinflation, have the nation unable to supply the most basic essentials such as bread and clean water

So forth and so on etc.. but yes it is all the boomers fault.. Dipstick