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Old 17th May 2010, 07:24 PM
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Global Fears of a Snowballing Debt Crisis

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/Fears-...&asset=&ccode=

Fears Intensify That Euro Crisis Could Snowball
May 17, 2010, 3:00 am EDT

After a brief respite following the announcement last week of a nearly $1 trillion bailout plan for Europe, fear in the financial markets is building again, this time over worries that the Continent’s biggest banks face strains that will hobble European economies. In a sign of the depth of the anxiety, the euro fell Friday to its lowest level since the depth of the financial crisis, as investors abandoned the currency as well as stocks in favor of gold and other assets seen as offering more safety. In trading early Monday morning, the euro declined again, managing at one time to reach a four-year low relative to the dollar.

The president of the European Central Bank, Jean-Claude Trichet, in an interview published Saturday, warned that Europe was facing “severe tensions” and that the markets were fragile. For Europe’s banks, the problems are twofold. Short-term borrowing costs are rising, which could lead institutions to cut back on new loans and call in old ones, crimping economic growth. At the same time, seemingly safe institutions in more solid economies like France and Germany hold vast amounts of bonds from their more shaky neighbors, like Spain, Portugal and Greece.

Investors fear that with many governments groaning under the weight of huge deficits, the debt of weaker nations that use the euro currency will have to be restructured, deeply lowering the value of their bonds. That would hit European financial institutions hard, and may ricochet through the global banking system. Bourses and bank shares in Europe plunged on Friday because of these fears, with Wall Street following suit. Shares were also down in Tokyo and Australia in early trading on Monday.

“This bailout wasn’t done to help the Greeks; it was done to help the French and German banks,” said Niall Ferguson, an economic historian at Harvard. “They’ve poured some water on the fire, but the fire has not gone out.” The European rescue plan, totaling 750 billion euros, is intended to head off the risk of default but would vastly increase borrowing. That could hamstring Europe’s nascent recovery. Indeed, it was too much debt that caused the problem in the first place: a new report by the International Monetary Fund warns that “high levels of public indebtedness could weigh on economic growth for years.”

The world’s budget deficit as a percentage of gross domestic product now stands at 6 percent, up from just 0.3 percent before the financial crisis. If public debt is not lowered back to precrisis levels, the I.M.F. report said, growth in advanced economies could decline by half a percentage point annually. To be sure, not all of the trends are negative. A lower euro will actually make European exports — be it German automobiles or Italian leather — more affordable and more competitive around the world. And Greece, Spain and Portugal took the first steps last week toward enacting austerity measures that would reduce their budget deficits. Those steps were not enough to prevent a flare-up in money market funds, a crucial but little-noticed corner of the financial system in which American investors provide more than $500 billion in short-term loans to help European banks finance their daily operations. The cash comes from conservative funds that hold the savings of big American corporations and individual American consumers.

So far, the proposed rescue package has failed to ease worries at these funds, which have cut back on loans to European banks and are demanding higher rates and quicker repayment. “More people are making the yes or no decision to pull out of the market and keep their money closer to home,” said Lou Crandall, the chief economist of Wrightson ICAP, a money market research firm. Initially, it was Greek and Portuguese banks that got the cold shoulder from American lenders. But over the last two weeks big banks in Spain, Ireland and Italy have struggled to secure short-term funds from the United States as the anxiety has spread.

By Friday, even banks in solid European economies like France, Germany and the Netherlands were caught in the undertow, according to market analysts and traders. “Investors are waiting to see whether the stability package can be put into place,” said Alex Roever, a short-term fixed-income analyst for J.P. Morgan Securities. “Until investors get a better feel, we are hung in limbo.” Because of the pullback by American lenders, the rate banks charge one another for overnight loans, known as Libor for the London Interbank Offered Rate, has been steadily climbing. And the significance of Libor stretches far beyond Europe’s shores: that is the benchmark that helps determine the interest rate on many mortgages and credit cards held by American consumers.

Bank borrowing rates are still well below where they were at the height of the crisis. Fears that the problems in Europe could rebound in the United States, however, led the Federal Reserve to restart lines of credit to the European Central Bank and other central banks in conjunction with the European rescue package announced a week ago. The move ensured that European institutions would be able to borrow dollars to lend to their clients, but that is more expensive than relying on private investors. “We didn’t do so out of any special love for Europe,” Narayana R. Kocherlakota, the president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, told a group of small-business owners in Wisconsin on Thursday. “We’re American policy makers, and we make decisions to keep the American economy strong.” However, he said, “The liquidity problems in European markets were showing signs of creating dangerous illiquidity problems in our own country’s financial markets.” That is not the only domino that could fall.

While the direct exposure of American banks to Greece is minimal, American financial institutions are closely intertwined with many big European banks, which in turn have large investments in the weaker European nations. For example, Portuguese banks owe $86 billion to their counterparts in Spain, which in turn owe German institutions $238 billion and French banks $220 billion. American banks are also big owners of Spanish bank debt, holding nearly $200 billion, according to the Bank for International Settlements, a global organization serving central bankers. Furthermore, financial policy makers find themselves running out of weapons in their arsenal. After borrowing trillions to stimulate their economies and ease credit concerns during the last wave of fear in late 2008 and early 2009, governments cannot borrow trillions more without risking higher inflation and shoving aside other borrowers like individuals and companies. Short-term interest rates, already near zero in the United States, cannot be lowered any further. And vital steps like raising taxes or cutting spending increases could snuff out the beginnings of a recovery in northern Europe and worsen the pain in recession-battered economies like Spain, where unemployment recently passed 20 percent.

With the exception of wartime, “the public finances in the majority of advanced industrial countries are in a worse state today than at any time since the industrial revolution,” Willem Buiter, Citigroup’s top economist, wrote in a recent report. “Restoring fiscal balance will be a drag on growth for years to come.”

Last edited by bwhhisc; 17th May 2010 at 07:26 PM..
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Old 17th May 2010, 08:26 PM
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Re: Global Fears of a Snowballing Debt Crisis

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GK6yzM9bhSM
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Old 17th May 2010, 08:48 PM
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Re: Global Fears of a Snowballing Debt Crisis

here's the one that's going viral:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eb1n1...rald%20celente
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Old 17th May 2010, 09:30 PM
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Re: Global Fears of a Snowballing Debt Crisis

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Originally Posted by phio View Post
Interesting video. errrrr I got caught up watching this and am missing my meeting 54 minutes

Last edited by tee1; 17th May 2010 at 09:31 PM..
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Old 17th May 2010, 09:35 PM
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Re: Global Fears of a Snowballing Debt Crisis

Frankly, I would be more concerned about the exposure of American Banks to the American situation.

Once the incredibily dense talking head wake up to the fact the US economy is nothing more than a bubble kept aloft by pretend and extend the true nature of the this crisis will become apparent. The dollar is now the largest ponzi scheme the World has ever seen by several factor of magnitude, and it cannot end well.
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Old 17th May 2010, 09:41 PM
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Re: Global Fears of a Snowballing Debt Crisis

Quote:
Originally Posted by tee1 View Post
Interesting video. errrrr I got caught up watching this and am missing my meeting 54 minutes
LOL, don't want to miss your meeting.

Looks like these guys missed their meeting a few days ago in Romainia
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dla-IGu6bhg

The Irish are doing it again in a few hours:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k9Zcv8-oLUM

me thinks people are getting pissed at the banks...read the comments...
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Old 17th May 2010, 09:45 PM
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Re: Global Fears of a Snowballing Debt Crisis

Banks are easy to deal with.

The Bank of England when originally set up was paid for from the money it printed.

The way to put them in their place is to simply remove their banking licences and give them to somebody else.

Like it is actually going to be difficult to find somebody interested in a licence to print money?


Quote:
Originally Posted by phio View Post
LOL, don't want to miss your meeting.

Looks like these guys missed their meeting a few days ago in Romainia
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dla-IGu6bhg

The Irish are doing it again in a few hours:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k9Zcv8-oLUM

me thinks people are getting pissed at the banks...read the comments...
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Old 17th May 2010, 09:51 PM
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Re: Global Fears of a Snowballing Debt Crisis

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rubber Duck View Post
Banks are easy to deal with.

The Bank of England when originally set up was paid for from the money it printed.

The way to put them in their place is to simply remove their banking licences and give them to somebody else.

Like it is actually going to be difficult to find somebody interested in a licence to print money?
The Romainians are pissed about their wage cuts...

In American, people are not waking up yet. Lot of self-calming by the media and politicians....

rumor has it that those in the know are dumping their 401Ks

I wonder what it will take to wake em up?
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Old 17th May 2010, 09:54 PM
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Re: Global Fears of a Snowballing Debt Crisis

Quote:
Originally Posted by phio View Post
The Romainians are pissed about their wage cuts...

In American, people are not waking up yet. Lot of self-calming by the media and politicians....

rumor has it that those in the know are dumping their 401Ks

I wonder what it will take to wake em up?
Who says they need to wake up, they might just drift into vegatative state.
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Old 17th May 2010, 10:15 PM
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Re: Global Fears of a Snowballing Debt Crisis

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rubber Duck View Post
Frankly, I would be more concerned about the exposure of American Banks to the American situation.

Once the incredibily dense talking head wake up to the fact the US economy is nothing more than a bubble kept aloft by pretend and extend the true nature of the this crisis will become apparent. The dollar is now the largest ponzi scheme the World has ever seen by several factor of magnitude, and it cannot end well.
define a bubble here in US? and if thats in reference to CA deficit and such, then would you describe Japan as bubble as well?

the bottom line is that as long as people around the world are investing in US and financing it, then party will continue. Still the strongest and most practical economy out there on such a large scale. No one is being forced to invest in US (except for China ).
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Old 17th May 2010, 10:24 PM
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Re: Global Fears of a Snowballing Debt Crisis

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Originally Posted by Emil View Post
define a bubble here in US? and if thats in reference to CA deficit and such, then would you describe Japan as bubble as well?

the bottom line is that as long as people around the world are investing in US and financing it, then party will continue. Still the strongest and most practical economy out there on such a large scale. No one is being forced to invest in US (except for China ).
Printing money and bailing out financial institutions creates a bubble by propping up companies that would have failed.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=icXYt3mzsXA

from a year ago: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BUC7Nu76VFM
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Old 17th May 2010, 10:30 PM
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Re: Global Fears of a Snowballing Debt Crisis

Quote:
Originally Posted by Emil View Post
define a bubble here in US? and if thats in reference to CA deficit and such, then would you describe Japan as bubble as well?

the bottom line is that as long as people around the world are investing in US and financing it, then party will continue. Still the strongest and most practical economy out there on such a large scale. No one is being forced to invest in US (except for China ).
Yes, it is amazing how comparisons are drawn between California and Greece, and of course it is always stated that California cannot go bust because the US will come to the rescue.

First, it has to be understood, that the debt problems in the Eurozone are fundamentally different from those in the US. For two decades the US was mocking European bank for its conservative interest rates policies. What we do know is citizens within the Eurozone never had access to ridiculously cheap credit. Therefore the level of bubbles in the Eurozone are minute compared with the Real Estate market in California. By contrast because California is not a Sovereign State its level of indebtedness is comparatively small. That is because the financing has been done at the level of the Federal Government and the Federal Bank. Of course California won't default, but that does not mean your money is safe.

Yes, the US has huge access to foreign investment, but only a fool would suppose that foreigners are going to be happy to lend forever at low interest rates. The only reason they might do this is because of the appreciation of a strong currency. The Dollar is already an inexplicable bubble. Only sentiment is keeping it where it is. Start looking at the fundamentals objectively and currently valuations make nonsense. When the crash comes it will be swift and decisive and US Hegemony will be over once and for all. Get used to the concept of having to borrow in a currencies other than your own which cannot monetize and having to pay seemingly extortionately high interest rates as lender protect themselves against the risk of default. Judgement day is is nigh.
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Old 17th May 2010, 10:44 PM
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Re: Global Fears of a Snowballing Debt Crisis

There is a problem with banks and financial institutions that have one of 17 direct tie ins to the wall street mainframe -- which can beat anyone. The stock market is rigged, just like the slots in Vegas...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q5JmCIttcEk

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nPFMB...eature=related
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Old 17th May 2010, 11:52 PM
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Re: Global Fears of a Snowballing Debt Crisis

brazil, india, japan, and germany deserve
security council permanent seats, and the same veto powers as


France and the UK...

Overcapacity in all capital intensive businesses are now in the red zone...
China does not need hundreds of more empty office and apt buildings.
and millions of tonnes of unneeded bulk container shipping..

The euro has been exposed as a fraud relative to north vs. south nations rates of saving/consumption/debt/ productivity and public sector waste.


Blaming the US for intra-EU debt misalignment is a non-starter.

Most of the 750 billion euros will go from the govt's to the major city center banks in London, Paris, and Frankfurt.

Just like the US TARP money went to banks so they can re-lend back to the US Treasury for 300 basis points for long term debt.


China's real estate bubble will have its moment.
Japan's stagnation was 15 years.

Can China's elite allow growth below 7% ever ??
The political powder keg of rural and industrial stranded workers in China makes the EU and US look simple.


The UK seems content to go back to its instincts of throwing the keys to 10 Downing to an Eton/Oxford cabal. I am sure the Welsh and Scots are wildly happy to have Tories/ LD's without records to guide the realm for 6 to 9 months.

Spain, Italy, Portugal, and the UK....will wait until the World Cup is over.
Then the red cards for political theater will start again.

Smug bankers in London, Paris, and Frankfurt need to get ready for some hefty write downs of EU sovereign debt.


The US second smack down for its bourse is on track as well.

But gold at $1200 / oz is insane. When that crash happens...maybe it will be better to own palm oil futures ??? (grin)

The idea that the US/ EU will find a way for the Chinese to buy 2+ trillion to add to their current 2.5+ trillion is spurious.

Unfortunately, Chinese citizens will not go on a $1.5 trillion consumer spending spree either..

so the screaming and hair pulling will be global.

When the Economist screams that the City should be 30% owned by yuan denominated bonds then we will know that the UK/US/ EU dominion is now really a new trans world economic era with East Asia a complete equal to
the US-EU-UK regime.

Maybe when the Arabs and African dictators want yuan over dollars that would be the true signal.
sometimes a shift is a shift and not the collapse of a Ponzi.

Meanwhile green card apps from China and India continue apace.

s/
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Old 18th May 2010, 06:02 AM
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Re: Global Fears of a Snowballing Debt Crisis

The Euro is a fraud?

The Euro was a serious attempt to create sound money. By contrast the US Dollar is merely an attempt to assume sound money without putting in any of the spade work. Sure Emil is right. The party will continue for as long as the World continues to be fooled. My guess is that that is not very much longer.

Yes, and Japan was a bubble. Not on the scale of the US and not on foreign debt but a bubble nonetheless. It does give a clue as to the scale of the aftermath. The only thing between the US and total destruction is the Wizard with the Rose tinted spectacles.
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Old 18th May 2010, 07:26 AM
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Re: Global Fears of a Snowballing Debt Crisis

I meant that Greek finance with the euro was fraudulant. and criminal.
Goldman execs and Greek govt cooked the books. Greek treasury officals need to go in the docK.
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Old 18th May 2010, 08:21 PM
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Re: Global Fears of a Snowballing Debt Crisis

Yup. The Greek people had no idea what was going on to get them into the Euro.

Now they're stuck between a rock and a hard place. If they could devalue, the price of holidays to Greece would be cheaper and people would be down there and spending Drachmas like they were going out of fashion.
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Old 18th May 2010, 08:43 PM
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Re: Global Fears of a Snowballing Debt Crisis

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Goldman execs and Greek govt cooked the books. Greek treasury officals need to go in the docK.
I wouldn't hold my breath waiting for that to happen !!
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Old 19th May 2010, 12:02 AM
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Re: Global Fears of a Snowballing Debt Crisis

If everyone's bankrupt no one's bankrupt.

The ones who saved need to worry more than the ones who borrowed.
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Old 19th May 2010, 05:48 AM
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Re: Global Fears of a Snowballing Debt Crisis

Crazy but true. The bad actors got rescued to the detriment of the rest of us.

So much for capitalism.
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