Markets all over the world shed points Thursday as the euro zone debt crisis continued to chip away at investor confidence. The euro zone economy is on the brink of recession as markets fell into one of their sharpest declines of the year on Thursday, the Globe and Mail reports. Europe’s FTSE 100 fell more than 4 per cent by mid-afternoon local time, while in North America, the TSX, S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average all fell sharply in early trading. In Europe, investors are uneasy that the economy can weather the prospect of a Greek debt default at the same time as the wider economic recovery grinds to a halt. The European Union’s financial services commissioner told France’s Le Figaro that he can’t rule out the need to bail out European banks as the possibility of another recession in Europe begins to look more realistic. As markets tumbled significantly, people in Greece were mobilizing against austerity measures that have been imposed by the country’s creditors, the IMF, European Central Bank and European Commission. Athens faced a 24-hour transportation strike on Thursday, while demonstrators planned a protest outside the Greek legislature later in the day. Many Greeks are blaming the austerity program for perpetuating the country’s economic collapse. Unemployment there continues to rise as government spending falls and taxation levels increase in an effort to balance the Greek budget.