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French press review 12 July 2012


There's practically nothing but bad news on this morning's front pages, starting with thousands of job losses at Peugeot Citroën and going on to prophecies of more doom in the eurozone and the conflict in Mali. Well, at least the Rolling Stones are still rocking after 50 years of performing and recording!

Both right-wing Le Figaro and catholic La Croix look at the crisis in the French car industry. Both papers had gone to press last night before the sad confirmation that PSA Peugeot-Citroën is to close one plant and cut at least 8,000 jobs.

Dossier: Eurozone in crisis

Unlike its rival Renault, Peugeot-Citroën has been relatively faithful to its French roots, maintaining 45 per cent of production at home while Renault has moved three-quarters of its construction to places where labour costs are cheaper. The downside is that Peugeot-Citroën lost 500 million euros in the second quarter of last year.

The news of the job cuts, tragic for the workers who will be forced onto the dole queues, has been greeted with enthusiasm by the stock marketeers, with nearly two per cent added to the value of Peugeot-Citroën shares this morning.

Centrist Le Monde says the crisis in the eurozone ain't over yet, just two weeks after the Brussels summit which promised the financial equivalent of peace in our time.

There are problems of one sort or another in Germany, Spain and France, slowing down the implementation of the promises made two weeks ago.

Parliamentary elections 2012

The markets, of course, don't have to worry about national constitutions and political considerations. They just go where the money is. According to an analyst at the American Federal Reserve, the US state bank if you like, the clash between slow European institutions and superfast money-makers is bleeding the eurozone to death. There is no cure.

Libération wonders how long it will take the world to wake up to the situation in northern Mali, where various Islamist groups have effectively cut the country in half, further destabilising a region already close to collapse.

Aujourd'hui en France celebrates the 50th anniversary of the first-ever concert by The Rolling Stones, still going strong despite a tough half century on the road.

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