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The BBC, in an apparent effort to compete with Britain’s well-known fondness for tabloid sensationalism, offers up this today:

Top economists reveal their graphs of 2011

Be still, my beating heart! Unsurprisingly, it turns out that most of the top faves are related to the euro crisis, and to be honest, even by my standards they aren’t all that super interesting. Still, it’s worth a quick stroll. To whet your appetite, here’s a chart from Carl Emmerson, deputy director of the the Institute for Fiscal Studies. His explanation:

This shows the Bank of England’s estimate of what the market thinks is the likelihood of sovereign defaults in selected countries in the next five years. Prior to the crisis the market did not see any sizeable difference between these countries despite very different levels of public and private sector debt. The estimated chance of a default increased sharply for many in the aftermath of Lehman’s demise in late 2008 but these increases have been dwarfed by those since early 2010.

If the Bank of England is to be believed, Greece, Portugal, and Ireland all have about a 50% or greater chance of defaulting by 2016.

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This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

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