EU Powers Suffer Shock Defeat as Irish Take Key Finance Job

(Bloomberg) — The euro region’s smallest nations staged an uprising to put one of their own in charge of finance ministers’ meetings and strike a blow against the bloc’s major powers.

Ireland’s Paschal Donohoe won a secret ballot of 19 colleagues Thursday to become president of the Eurogroup, defeating the Spanish favorite, Nadia Calvino, who was backed by the European Union’s four biggest economies.

Germany, France, Italy and particularly Spain were angered by a loss that they failed to see coming, said one official with knowledge of the process. Smaller countries from eastern Europe said they felt that in backing Donohoe they were supporting one of their own, said another.

The fact that both leading candidates came from countries that were bailed out during the sovereign debt crisis is a sign that the EU is ready to turn the page on the divisions of the austerity years. Yet the small

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