Financial analysts Moody’s have released a new credit report on Iceland. Meanwhile, the economy continues to recover. While Moody’s has been cautiously optimistic about Iceland’s overall economy, their latest credit analysis once again offers a mixed – but more negative – outlook on Iceland.
In its annual credit report on Iceland, Moody’s Investors Service says that Iceland’s Baa3 government bond rating is based on the country’s moderate economic and high institutional strength as well as low government financial strength and high susceptibility to event risk. The downside risks facing Iceland’s sovereign creditworthiness are reflected in the currently negative outlook on the rating.
In related news, Iceland’s economy continues to recover. Inflation is now at 4.6%, decreasing by 0.7% from the month previous. Unemployment is also quite low, at 5.2%. Also of note: the number of bankruptcies has decreased by 30% from this same time last year.
The likelihood of an eruption in the Bárðarbunga caldera is increasing, says volcanologist Ármann Höskuldsson. “It is becoming more likely that there will be an eruption under the glacier at Bárðarbunga,” Ármann told Vísir. “The eruption in Holuhraun can’t handle much more and this shit has to come out somewhere.” Ármann reiterates however, that technically Holuhraun counts as Bárðarbunga as it is located within the Bárðarbunga area. If an eruption took place in the caldera under the ice it would have serious repercussions. “There would be a flood, likely up north and a considerable ash cloud,” said Ármann. “It could
The number of people going whale watching is growing rapidly, reports RÚV. An estimated 10.000 people will go whale watching this year with Arctic Sea Tours in Dalvík for example, a significant increase on last year when 6.400 people went. “We see whales about 98% of the time, and humpbacks about 94% of the time. The humpback whale is people’s favourite and is quite curious and playful in nature,” said Arctic Sea Tours owner,Freyr Antonsson. “[When we started offering year-round tours], we came up against the weather a bit over the winter but I can’t be anything other than pleased
Another labour union group has criticised the proposed 2015 budget, while Prime Minister Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson doubts unions will make good on their threat to walk out over it. In a new statement from the Húsavík Labour Union Office (Framsýn) entitled “The heart of the government doesn’t beat with working people”, the labour union group harshly criticises the proposed 2015 budget. “It is obvious that the government has no interest in working with the labour movement in creating a society based on equality,” the statement reads in part. “The labour movement is duty bound and will respond very clearly in
One of the Minister of the Interior’s assistants is currently on trial for his part in the leak of a memo about asylum seeker Tony Omos. Gísli Freyr Valdórsson, a former assistant to Minister of the Interior Hanna Birna Kristjánsdóttir, was charged with breach of confidentiality and relieved of his position last August. He is now on trial in Reykjavík District Court, and the matter is already proving contentious. Vísir points out that even while no longer employed at the Ministry and currently standing trial, Gísli Freyr is still receiving a full salary. “This kind of comes out of nowhere,
A new bill from the Minister of Health would provide health insurance coverage to Iceland’s asylum seekers. Currently, only those asylum seekers who were expressly invited to Iceland by the government have had immediate health coverage. RÚV reports that this may soon change. This Tuesday, Minister of Health Kristján Þór Júlíusson will submit a bill to parliament that, if passed into law, would provide health insurance to all asylum seekers, whether they were invited or arrived of their own accord. This coverage would go into effect immediately upon an asylum seeker being registered as such. Under the present system, asylum
Birta Líf Kristinsdóttir, a meteorologist with the Icelandic Met Office has posted a video of what a weather report might look like in Iceland in July 2050, reports RÚV. The video has been made in conjunction with the UN Climate Change Summit in New York next week. By 2050, Birta Líf predicts that Iceland will be much greener with summer temperatures reaching between 20-30 degrees celsius. She also goes over the ramifications of the warmer climate and how it might effect the acidification of the sea. Check out her video below, the first half is in Icelandic (subtitled) but stick