Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy proposed an austerity budget for 2013 amid rumors that the country will seek a bailout. The budget, called a “crisis budget designed to exit the crisis” by Deputy Prime Minister Soraya Saenz de Santamaria, imposes a pay freeze on public-sector employees and a 20 percent tax on lottery winnings—but protects pensions. Yet the budget is unlikely to please the Spanish people, with tens of thousands protesting Madrid. A stress test of the country’s banks is set to be released on Friday, while Spanish stock slightly rebounded in early trading on Thursday after falling sharply on Wednesday.
CRISIS Andres Kudacki / AP Photo