20110629 greece flag 54
A demonstrator waves flag in front of the parliament building in Athens, Greece. - 

BEARD: OK, let's get to Greece. In the last hour the country's parliament passed a controversial austerity bill that had been demanded by the European Union and the MF in order for Greece to get more bailout money and avoid default. The reaction on the streets of Athens has been violent.

Marketplace's Stephen Beard is here live with the latest. Stephen, good morning.

STEPHEN BEARD: Good morning Jeremy.

HOBSON: So, tell us what's happening here.

BEARD: Well, the parliament passed the austerity measure by a fairly narrow margin, 155 votes to 138. It has a further hurdle to clear -- parliamentarians vote tomorrow on implementing the package. If it does come into force, it will seek to reduce the Greek deficit by some $45 billion. This is a package of tax increases, spending cuts and state owned asset sales. This will at least ensure that Greece will get the next chunk of the bailout money by the middle of July, so they won't default yet. Whether these measures will be implemented in full though is doubtful -- 80 percent of the Greek people are said to oppose them.

STEPHEN BEARD: Marketplace's Stephen Beard live in London. Stephen thanks.

BEARD: OK Jeremy.