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2nd September 2011
…. I ‘m sure the BBC 1 was touting the “bailout” as a ” saved the Euro ” win this morning!
to be frank , I don’t think we’ll ever get the truth any more
As for the economics , I agree , Portugal should look at the Greek fiasco and go for broke, that is default . would be quicker , cleaner and less painful.
hey , why not ask the people ? naw , the Euro dictators will not allow any “no ” votes come hell or high water.
Democracy – whats that then ?
Why stop with just Portugal?
There are plenty of economies that are holed well below the water line when it comes to their debt burden. It will have to end eventually…
Greece today… tomorrow… Spain, Italy, Japan, UK, USA.
Only Iceland had the balls to do it right first time. The bad times haven’t even started for the rest of us yet!
Good point about Iceland, Zak. I read in the US press today that Iceland are thinking of using the Canadian dollar as their currency (!) aiming to forgo EU/EZ entry….that takes a similar size of cojones!!!
I am surprised that the economic weakness in Spain is not attracting more attention. As I wrote on January 27th she looks to me as if recession may be too weak a title and an economic depression is on its way.
Yesterdays Spanish retail sales numbers were yet another depressing number in a weak series.
Actually I was ifanything too fair to the Greek bail out deal. The more I analyse the numbers the weaker the benefit from this deal is for Greece.
However it would appear that Portugal has learnt nothing as her Prime Minister repeated yet again that no further bailouts would be needed and even more unbelievably that she was progressing…
It will be interesting to see what happens with the CDS adjudication later today, but I can’t help thinking that, whatever it says:
1. People are not going to get back face value on their loans and this is a default
2. Collective action clauses are a fraud, which will make it ever harder to get real investors to buy sovereign Euro debt
3. The Greeks are completely bust
4. The mainstream media are as hopeless as ever in discerning what is going on unerneath the”It’s all fixed” message pumped out by the EU
Hi James and welcome to my part of the blogosphere.
Late in the evening ISDA did declare a credit event and Credit Default Swaps on Greek government bonds will now pay out. Interestingly Eurozone officials such as Jean Claude Juncker were saying that the CaCs would be activated several hours before Greece announced it officially leading the more thoughtful to wonder exactly who made the decision……
So far from the CDS activation only one real casualty has shown its hand which is KA Finanz of Austria. So the Austrian banks remain somewhat “accident-prone” although contagion will be limited as it is already in state hands. Of course looking at it as an Austrian taxpayer your view might be somewhat different about contagion!
The Greek government has presented the media with numbers claiming voluntary acceptance over their desired number. Given that the Greek financial statistics for Euro entry were subsequently found to be incorrect, why should we trust their latest result ?
Troika leaning over their shoulders?
This might be of some interest.
Shaun – another good piece. I am reminded of your words just prior to Christmas last year…..Greece should have taken your advice!
Good article, thanks Shaun. If CACs were imposed by retrospective legislation and were used as to lever a write-off I am sure City lawyers will be busting to earn some fees. If I were a Eurozone sovereign asset-holder I would be getting nervous, wouldnt I? What happened to the Greek bonds held by the ECB under the SMP?
Those holding Portuguese bonds have a real problem as deciding whether or not to cut a position that is very underwater already is one of the hardest investment decisions. In my opinion with its grim economic outlook the sovereign bonds I would least want to be in now are Spain’s because the LTRO rally leaves them plenty of scope to fall over the medium-term whereas Portugal’s have already had big falls.
The ECB indulged itself in a game of financial alchemy where it exchanged its bonds with new ones worth par (100). The March Hare would be proud of this but Alice would be pointing out “they are only worth 20!” Euro zone taxpayers may well end up with the bill for this although the bonds will probably be hidden in some complicated vehicle like the EFSF for years to come….
As I type Brent Oil $125.690 £/$ 1.5695. Sounds like inflation to me.
Yes I was watching it too and Brent went above US $126 although it closed just below. Those who have declared the “end of inflation” in the press and on the BBC may yet have time to regret taking the easy option of copying and pasting the Bank of England’s press releases.
Shaun, apologies for a second post but I have read some positive news coming out of Greece amidst all the gloom. It seems that several towns are freeing up some municipal land and with the help of the local Faculty of Agriculture are helping people grow their own organic food. This scheme is similar to the UK allotment concept. The cost is €10 per month but if applicants are unemployed or suffering severe hardship this fee is waived. At the last count over 4,000 people had applied to join the scheme. It would seem that someone, somewhere is at last thinking about the ordinary people and trying to ameliorate the worst aspects of depression.
I have always liked the allotment concept. When I was a child my mother had one for a while and I am a supporter of more modern attempts to revive the concept. As times get harder what I used to perceive as the secondary impact (some fresh veg.) may become more important than reconnecting with nature for urban types (like me…).
With the extra space available there it makes me wonder if the US could add it to the SNAP or foodstamp programme.
Thanks for your reply, Shaun. I think your idea for the US is great. Looking nearer to home, I think the concept will (must?) become more important in the UK. I know there are pockets in the south west (Devon/Cornwall).
You make a good point but actually for the Greek law bonds the threshold was way lower than this. They only needed 50% of 66% of the bond holders to vote yes if I recall correctly.
Before this is over I think the courts will be crawling over many of the foreign law bonds and so any misrepresentation here will be shown up in the end.
Perhaps but then their hands are not clean. I spotted this from a Warren Mosler who had obviously been keeping track.
““I’ve always said publicly that default is out of the question,” – Trichet“There will be no default.” – Rehn“People fail to see the costs to both Greece and the eurozone of a restructuring: the cost to its citizens, the cost to its access to markets. If Greece restructures, why on earth would people invest in other peripheral economies? It would be a fundamental break to the unity of the eurozone.” – Papaconstantinou
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