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Portuguese markets in turmoil as government teeters

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Jeroen Dijsselbloem, the president of the Eurogroup meetings of eurozone finance ministers, described the Portuguese upheaval as "disturbing" and said political stability in bailed-out countries is "a crucial factor" for recovery.

Up until recently, Portugal had been making progress with its bailout program. The government had successfully managed to participate in some small bond auctions and had won some breathing space on its deficit targets from its European partners. Also, the economic contraction was slowing and unemployment has stopped rising.

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But the country still has a lot more unpopular cutting to do. The government has to find another 3.4 billion euros of savings in 2014 and is due to present later this month details of a deep and broad reform of how the state is run. The proposal is expected to order a further streamlining of state services and will likely fuel more protests.

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