ECONOMY

Greece running out of options, says Krugman

Nobel-prize winning economist Paul Krugman said Greece is ?close? to having to leave the 17- member currency region as austerity measures imposed on the nation hamper its economic recovery.

?If I were running a peripheral country I would say that you cannot leave? the euro region, Krugman, a professor at Princeton University, said in Lisbon late yesterday. While it would be ?extremely disruptive,? Greece is ?very close to running out of alternatives,? he said.

Germany?s parliament approved a second Greek aid package in Berlin yesterday, part of a plan agreed earlier this month to stem the debt crisis. Still, finance officials from the Group of 20 nations meeting in Mexico over the weekend rebuffed pleas for additional funding through the International Monetary Fund, saying the region first needs to boost its own resources. European leaders are scheduled to meet in Brussels March 1-2.

Greece?s credit ratings were cut to ?Selective Default? by Standard