Puerto Rico financial crisis: Country on the brink of defaulting on debts

'I think it’s going to get incredibly messy' said one financier

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The Independent US

Puerto Rico is expected to default on $58 million of debt on Monday.

The US commonwealth country is increasingly coming under pressure financially as it attempts to restructure $72 billion of debt.

Governor Garcia Padilla has described the country’s economy as being in a vicious “death spiral” and announced that the country is unable to pay back its debts.

He said: “The debt is not payable. There is no other option. I would love to have an easier option. This is not politics, this is maths.”

Amid the country’s financial crisis, group of billionaire hedge fund managers have commissioned a report titled ‘For Puerto Rico, there is a better way’. It calls for Puerto Rico to sack teachers and close schools so that investors can recover some of the $72 billion in debt the country owes.

The country had initially agreed to make a loan repayment today, however a state spokesperson has since said that because it is a weekend, they can have until Monday to come up with the money.

However, it is universally understood that this will not be feasible and the world’s markets are bracing themselves for Puerto Rico to default on Monday.

Puerto Rican analyst Ted Hampton told CNN: "We believe the probability of a default is probably approaching 100 per cent."

Speaking to the Wall Street Journal  this week, Nick Venditti, portfolio manager at Thornburg Investment Management which oversees debt, said: “I think it’s going to get incredibly messy.”