1. ITV Report

Spanish austerity marches shatter market calm

Protesters shout slogans during a demonstration outside Madrid's Parliament Photo: REUTERS/Paul Hanna

Spanish protesters have again clashed with police in Madrid as anger grows over new austerity measures. The protests come as Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy considers asking for renewed aid from the European Union.

Protesters shout slogans during a demonstration outside Madrid's Parliament Credit: REUTERS/Susana Vera

Thousands of angry protesters again swarmed as close as they could get to Parliament, watched by a heavy contingent of riot police. There was no fresh violence, but the demonstrators cut off traffic on one of the city's major thoroughfares at the height of the evening commute.

The protesters chanted for the release of 34 people detained on Tuesday night in clashes that injured 64 others.

Protesters shout slogans during a demonstration outside Madrid's Parliament Credit: Susana Vera / Reuters

They also demanded new elections to oust Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy and his conservative government, which has imposed cutbacks and tax hikes, deepening the gloom in a country struggling with recession and unemployment of nearly 25 percent, the highest among the 17 nations using the common euro currency.

Protesters take part in a sit-in during a demonstration outside Madrid's Parliament Credit: Susana Vera / Reuters

Spain's central bank warned Wednesday the country's economy continues to shrink "significantly," sending the Spanish stock index tumbling and its borrowing costs rising.