Europe Pressures Greece

In a bid to get Greek debt down to manageable levels, finance ministers in Europe turned up the heat on bondholders, asking them to take losses for the good of the euro zone. Jean-Claude Juncker, president of the gathering of finance ministers from the 17 countries that use the euro, said ministers are asking that the interest rate on new bonds be kept below 4 percent. A decrease in the level of Greece’s debt would help the country stave off default by allowing it to complete a bailout with the European Union and the International Monetary Fund. The ministers also said that they have moved forward with plans for the European Stability Mechanism, a firewall fund that has been championed by IMF head Christine Lagarde.