NEWS

Bookmakers say Greece will keep euro

As Greece meets with its official creditors to stave off a funding crunch, bookmakers say the country won’t leave the euro – at least in 2015.

Ladbrokes, a London-based gaming company, gives Greece odds of 8/11 of staying in the currency regime this year. Another betting house, William Hill, puts those odds at 1/4.

Those views come as Greece is at loggerheads with its euro-area partners, especially Germany, over its bailout terms. Germany says it wants the country to stick to its bailout agreement, while the newly elected anti-austerity government of Alexis Tsipras is asking for a new accord that will ease the pain of ordinary Greeks.

In response to the latest rounds of crunch talks, analysts at Ladbrokes, say Greece keeping the common European currency this year is the favored outcome. Those who wish to bet on Greece announcing its exit from the euro or even leaving the currency altogether will double their money should it happen this year, Ladbrokes said in an e-mailed statement.

“Europe finds itself on a knife edge but our latest odds suggest Greece will manage to cling on to the euro in 2015,” Alex Donohue, a spokesman for Ladbrokes, said.

William Hill, for its part, is betting that if a country were to leave the common currency before the 2019 euro elections, Greece is the “hot” favorite to be first, with odds of 1/5. The bets are off if no country leaves the euro by then.

“The new Greek government appears to be playing a game of brinkmanship, which could well result in a departure from the eurozone sooner rather than later,” according to William Hill spokesman Graham Sharpe.

[Bloomberg]