The acronym “PIGS” (Portugal + Italy + Greece + Spain) stands for the economies of these four European nations and has been cited in print since at least December 2007.
The acronym “PIIGS” (Portugal + Italy + Ireland + Greece + Spain) stands for the economies of these five European nations and has been cited in print since at least July 2008.
Similar acronymns include “BRIC” (Brazil + Russia+ India+ China), “MINT” (Mexico + Indonesia + Nigeria + Turkey) and “PITS” (Phlippines + Indonesia + Thailand + Singapore).
Wikipedia: PIGS (economics)
PIGS is a grouping acronym used by international bond analysts, academics, and by the international economic press that refers to the faltering and often indebted economies of Portugal, Italy, Greece, and Spain, often in regards to matters relating to sovereign debt markets. Some news and economic organisations have limited or banned use of these acronyms due to perceived offensive connotations.
With the onset of the Financial crisis of 2007–2010 the variations PIIGS and PIIGGS have appeared. When rendered as “PIIGS” some commentators added the additional “I” for comparative purposes to include Ireland from the 2008–2010 Irish financial crisis, with alternatively the “I” which originally referred to Italy occasionally becoming an interchangeable reference to Ireland by some during this period.
Additional permutations gained prominence during the 2009 United Kingdom bank rescue package period and into the 2010 European sovereign debt crisis as some commentators used numerous variations such as PIIGGS which includes Great Britain for assorted political, economic or social reports and commentary. The UK media used ‘RUPIIGS’ for a short while in the January of 2010. The ‘R’ took in Romania and the ‘U’ was for the UK, while PIIIGGS has a 3rd ‘I’ for Iceland.
Adding the United States to generate USPIIGS by commentators referring to the US public debt which is within a few percentage points of US GDP.
December 4, 2007
Three Month Treasury-EuroDollar (TED) Spread
2.E. Cartman said:
December 4th, 2007 at 3:06 pm
The current Fed thinks volatility is the enemy. That is the root cause of this problem.
I think Bernanke has been looking for an excuse to cut, and eliminate the “dollar savings glut” by inflating it away. It’s certainly working, but the stresses are already showing up in the eurozone. The “Pigs,” Portugal Italy Greece Spain, will not going stand by and watch their manufacturing base be destroyed just because RMB (?) and JPY are perpetually undervalued and America refuses to further afford a 6% annual trade deficit.
The Times (London)
May 25, 2008
Reform failures may still kill off the euro
I am referring to euroland’s “Pigs”. Pigs, like “Brics” is an acronym, though less flattering to those who fall into it. While Brics refers to the fast-growing emerging economies of Brazil, Russia, India and China, the Pigs are the struggling euroland countries of Portugal, Italy, Greece and Spain.
The ECB at ten
A decade in the sun
The ECB has had a good credit crisis and a solid first decade. That was the easy bit
Jun 5th 2008
One danger is that fractures within the euro area will distract the ECB from staying on top of inflation. A particular worry is what could be called the PIGS—Portugal, Italy, Greece and Spain, Europe’s negative version of the fast-growing BRICs. The fear is that these countries may be in a hole they cannot easily climb out of and that the ECB will be pressed into running a looser monetary policy to save them.
The Big Picture
BRIC vs PIGS
Wednesday, July 09, 2008 | 09:15 AM
PIGS? What the heck is a PIGS?
It turns out that PIGS stands for Portugal, Italy, Greece & Spain — P.I.G.S.
Why so crude an acronym? They are all in, or on the verge of tumbling into, a recession. Their significance is that they are the soft white underbelly of Europe. While not as economically important as Germany or England or even France, they are still a substantial chunk of nations, consumption and output for Europe. Our dashing Portuguese analyst expects their slowdown to spread to the rest of Europe.
PIGS: Now you know.
UPDATE: July 9, 2008 11:09AM
I am aware of the dispute between whether Italy or Ireland is part of the PIGS.
John F. Says:
July 9th, 2008 at 1:18 pm
iPIGS is nice, but the formulation PIIGS is already in wide circulation (in honor of Ireland’s problem with sub-prime). Lacks a certain je ne sais quoi…It’s not to early to start planning for further entries. FIGPIGS anyone?
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
George Magnus on the Economic Outlook
October 14, 2008 at 2:24 am
Unfortunately no view from Magnus on how long the Reverse Minsky journey is (i.e. how far we need to delever) or how long it will take.
He did however alert us to the dangers facing the PIIGS (Portugal/Italy/Ireland/Greece/Spain) which all had housing bubbles and are in for a rough ride.
The Times (London)
December 11, 2008
Plunging pound means that weekend break in Paris could leave you broke
Travel to Europe is becoming more expensive as sterling falls to a record low against the euro
Investors also appear to be taking a view that the eurozone’s prospects, while dragged down by laggards such as Portugal, Italy, Ireland, Greece and Spain – nicknamed the “PIIGS” by some economists – are still brighter than Britain’s.
New York City • Banking/Finance/Insurance • Sunday, March 20, 2011 • Permalink