A man grasps a bag of tangerines as people receive free produce, handed out by farmers, during a protest over the government's proposal to overhaul the country's ailing pension system in Athens, Greece, January 27, 2016. REUTERS/Alkis Konstantinidis
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Greece is about to exit its bailout, a symbolic move past a debt crisis that exploded eight years ago and left the economy, and the lives of its people, completely changed.Economic HitWhile Greece's crash rippled far beyond the borders of the country of just 11 million people, the effect at home was particularly dramatic.Public financesThe Greek leg of the global financial crisis was sparked when George Papandreou's newly elected government revealed that the country had misled the world about its finances and the 2009 budget deficit had swelled to more than 15 percent of gross domestic product, five times the EU limit.Public AdministrationOn the spending side, Greece's fiscal problems were partly caused by an explosion of public sector jobs in the years before the crash.Those arguments dissipated after Greece reduced the public payrolls by 150,000 jobs by only hiring one person for every five departures and not renewing temporary contracts.
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