Ireland officially hit the EU up for a loan today, after weeks of denying its debt-ridden banks needed a bailout. European Union finance ministers quickly agreed to the bailout, saying it "is warranted to safeguard financial stability in the EU and euro area." The amount remains to be decided. Ireland's Finance Minister Brian Lenihan refused to specify the size of the bailout, saying only that it would reach tens of billions of euros—and denying that it would top $137 billion, as some had speculated.
Ireland will use the money to pay its current deficit of $26 billion, and shore up its banks, which have been reeling since its housing market crashed in 2008. Dublin is also simultaneously finishing up an austerity budget today.
(Read more Ireland bailout stories.)