While the Greek Stock Market remains closed, ADRs trade around the world and National Bank of Greece - theoretically the strongest and least ELA-exposed (although still a disaster) - is trading down 24% in US markets on extremely heavy volume...
See! Greece doesn't matter... nor does China... nor does Puerto Rico...
European investors are increasing purchases of gold as Bloomberg reports, Greece’s turmoil boosts the appeal for an alternative to the euro. Demand from Greek customers for Sovereign gold coins was double the five-month average in June, the U.K. Royal Mint said in an e-mailed statement.As one Frankfurt-based bullion dealer noted, "most of our common gold coins are sold out, when people learned that the Greek banks will be closed, they started to think that it may not be such a bad idea to have some money in gold."
Good news - some Greek bank branches will re-open sooner than expected: GREEK OFFICIAL: 700 BANK BRANCHES TO OPEN THURSDAY FOR PENSIONS
Bad news - only pension withdrawals are allowed in limited size: GREEK PENSION WITHDRAWALS WILL BE LIMITED TO EU240: OFFICIAL
With all eyes focused on Greek ATM lines, collapsing Chinese ponzi schemes, and European bank implosions, one could be forgiven for forgetting about another crisis occurring closer to home. As we detailed here, Puerto Rico is now "in a death spiral" and PR bonds are collapsing this morning...
We now know it's serious because EU President Jean-Cleaude Juncker just dropped The Big Lie. He proclaimed that "pension cuts were not in the creditors proposals" which as many pointed out is a total lie and then said: "You shouldn’t commit suicide because you're afraid of dying. You should say 'yes' regardless of what the question is." Got that Greek Grandmas - Vote YES no matter what you think - that's how EU democracyu works...
At the open, Europe looked in the abyss, and with no help coming from China, it did not like what it saw: And then the answer came from the Swiss National Bank, which stepped in to prevent the collapse just as Europe was opening. Because seemingly out of nowhere, a tremendous bid came in to life the EURCHF, buying Euros (against the CHF and the USD) and selling Europe's last left safety currency. We now know that it was the SNB, the same central bank which is the proud owner of well over $1 billion in Apple stock.
Spot the glaring "oversight" it in the BIS map below which is a snapshot of the original BIS release. Hint: Dollar zone in Green... Euro zone in blue...
The faith in fiat currencies is faltering...
Despite the Greek stock market being closed there is an option for hedging the exposure that all the smart money has been building to Greece in the past few days - GREK - the US-trade Greek ETF. In the pre-open, GREK is trading down 17%. While the best efforts of the SNB are underway to protect the markets from unease, European banks are suffering the exact 'contagion' that we were told numerous times would be contained... led by limit down moves in Italy.
Global equities plunged on Monday as both carbon-based traders and HFTs tried in vain to keep their composure which watching in horror as Greece, the birthplace of Western civilization, quickly became Venezuela. With Europe’s “Lehman weekend” now in the books and as the currency union stares into an uncertain future, the sell side tries to make sense of it all.
While things have normalized since the open thanks entirely to the SNB's aggressive EUR-buying, CHF-selling intervention (good to see that central banks have read the BIS' report and have learned from their prior intervention mistakes), earlier this morning we got a snapshot of what happens if and when the SNB, and then the ECB itself, finally lose control when as a result of the Greek crisis the contagion promptly spread a few hundred kilometers west to Italy where as the WSJ reported, "several Italian banks failed to start trading on Monday as fears over a Greek debt default induced many investors to shed peripheral stocks, including Italian, with banks suffering the most."
- China’s Stocks Enter Bear Market as Rate Cut Fails to Stop Rout (BBG)
- Stocks Tumble Around the World on Greek Crisis (WSJ)
- Some say back to the drachma for a Greek reboot (Reuters)
- Greece Imposes Capital Controls as Fears of Grexit Grow (BBG)
- Panic Sets in Among Hardy Hedge Fund Investors Remaining in Greece (NYT)
- Euro off Greece-driven lows after SNB intervenes (Reuters)
- Western Union to close in Greece for rest of week (Reuters)
- European banks, bonds shaken by Greek turmoil (Reuters)