PIIGS

DEFINITION of 'PIIGS'

An acronym used to refer to the five eurozone nations, which were considered weaker economically following the financial crisis: Portugal, Italy, Ireland, Greece and Spain. Since the nations use the euro as their currency, they were unable to employ independent monetary policy in order to help battle the economic downturn.

BREAKING DOWN 'PIIGS'

On May 10, 2010, European leaders approved a 750 billion euro stabilization package to support these nations. The economic troubles of the PIIGS nations reignited debate about the efficacy of a single currency employed among the eurozone nations. Critics point out that continued economic disparities could lead to a breakup of the eurozone. In response, EU leaders proposed a peer review system for approval of national spending budgets in an effort to promote closer economic integration among EU member states.



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