Social spending should be protected

Social spending is the easiest target for governments anxious to cut their deficits, but it is also the most short-sighted plan.

Your article “Agreement reached on eurozone support scheme” (, 7 June) mentions the wave of government belt-tightening sweeping Europe. What needs to be realised is that these austerity measures are hitting social spending especially hard. For example, private-sector research suggests that 37% of the €80 billion that the German government intends to cut will come from social spending; just 7.3% of the consolidation will affect banks and the financial sector, and 16.1% other businesses.

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