Quantifying The IMF's Ability To Bail Out The World

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Sun, 05/02/2010 - 05:38 | 327611 doggings
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The scheme would allow the banks to post junk-rated Greek government bonds as collateral in exchange for emergency loans. It will require a change in the European Central Bank's rules: at present it allows only government bonds with a high credit rating to be used in its emergency lending facilities.

well it worked for the US banks with the FED taking toxic junk in exchange for unlimited backup, why not the rest of the world? it's all just pretend and meaningless numbers anyway.

http://www.theonion.com/articles/us-economy-grinds-to-halt-as-nation-rea...

Tue, 05/04/2010 - 01:41 | 330291 Adam Neira
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There is a limit to the amount of bailouts and stimulus packages that can be granted on the international stage. An important relationship exists between liquidity and confidence. All human beings have the drive to self actualise under the right circumstances. All behaviour is a result of mindset and setting however...

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 05:49 | 327617 ToNYC
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The Germans will cut loose Angela Merkel before she falls for this FEd-induced Shock Doctrine play. She isn't about to employ Hank Paulson's imaginary bazooka. Greece will realize its survival in the EU by self-financing in a mark-to-market  actuarial haircut in real time of future obligations  or they can sell their state treasures at auction. The remaining  SPIIGs need to see this one play out or Game Over.

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 09:38 | 327712 Ned Zeppelin
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If Germany nonetheless proceeds to fund the Grecian bailout, you will know who is in charge, and it's won't be Merkel or for that matter the German body politic - it will be the banks, just as the American voters were powerless to prevent the $700B bailout here (just the downpayment actually, the real cost is in the trillions of $USDs and the clock still running furiously).

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 05:53 | 327620 doggings
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sell their state treasures at auction.

me and a couple of pals would be interested in Paros if it's going cheap enough.

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 07:28 | 327655 ambrosiac
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Define "cheap enough".

 

A friend owns property on Paros, wants to build but is stuck due to refusing to pay bribes to the zoning board for the necessary permits.

 

Now redefine "cheap enough"  :))

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 05:59 | 327623 AnAnonymous
AnAnonymous's picture

A misguided effort. First thing I did when crisis started to kick  was to check mineral assets reserves all around the world.

Answer: collapse not for this time.

Largely enough to keep the scheme going on.

The IMF is not limited in its access to money. The money is limited in what it might buy.

Just a matter of emitting new credits. The IMF can carry out that in a trice. On the other side,  largely enough assets are left throughout the world to bail out the 'whole ' world (or more exactly, get one part of the world to bail out the other part)

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 07:06 | 327646 Observer
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good point

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 08:08 | 327631 Mercury
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I guess we'll soon find out when TBTF is overwhelmed by Too Big To Bail.

For now, TB or not TB, that is the question.

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 06:57 | 327642 plocequ1
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Good, I hope it works. I cant wait for my 90% tax increase. Besides, I love Feta Cheese.

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 07:04 | 327644 Observer
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my comment below

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 07:04 | 327645 Observer
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The IMF funds come from the 'rich' states who use it usually to control the 'not so rich' and 'poor' states anyway. all very 'rich' coming from countries whose central banks accpet any junk as 'collateral'. the countries in trouble should create their own bailout anyway by printing money and temper it by instituting price and capital controls till production catches up with excess money supply and stick the finger at the IMF. otherwise they are on the 'road to ruin'

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 07:11 | 327648 jkruffin
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Greeks should just stop working at all now, if this bailout package goes through.   Tax increases and wage cuts in one swoop.  I bet non of the top officials get hit like that.  It is always the less wealthy folks flipping the bill.   I think Greeks need to make a stand here and refuse.

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 07:29 | 327656 Broker NotBroke
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The bankrupt paying the bankrupt. Can't we just let it crash already? Everyone is going to default eventually. If we let it crash now, we may have a chance at a decent life sometime within our lifetime. If things keep going, our grandchildren will lament the futures of their grandchildren.

 

Let the world eat itself for a spell.

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 10:31 | 327749 lesterbegood
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Perhaps the world will open its mouth wide for us...

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 07:44 | 327663 exportbank
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In a fractional banking system doesn't the 500 Billion at the IMF become 40 trillion in available loans? (80 to 1 leverage like Citi) seems like enough to fix most problems. We live in a fraudulent finance world that needs reality but unfortunately that reality would involve the death of every bank, pension, FDIC and government. Reality is too nasty to allow. You want your 401K to "sort of" be worth something, you want your saving to remain so the only cure seem to be inflation and since that's already running at 9% (I know they tell you it's 2%) we're on the way. See shadowstats for real inflation data.

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 07:46 | 327664 LeBalance
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General question(s):

Are Grecian creditors (those holding its debt, etc.) first in line to trade their toxic assets in for the IMF and ECB "loan" funds?  If so, does Greece ever actually see these funds that it is borrowing OR do these funds just "heal" its Debt/GDP ratio and allow it to turn over a new leaf?  In turning over this new leaf, Greece would then need to run its economy in a responsible fashion (cough Keynes cough) in order to realise the ability to sell new debt (cough usury couch same boat as before cough).  But does anyone believe that Greece (cough defaulting every 1 out of 2 years since independence cough) will do this? (Only the CB gang again?  Those naughty world twisters!)

Hmmmm.....

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 08:09 | 327666 Duuude
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It's a merry merry go-round. Ya just gotta see the diagram in tha link.

The numbers quickly mount. Ireland is heavily indebted to Germany and Britain. The exposure of German banks to Spanish debt totals $238 billion, according to the Bank for International Settlements, while French banks hold another $220 billion. And Italy, whose finances are perennially shaky, is owed $31 billion by Spain and owes France $511 billion, or nearly 20 percent of the French gross domestic product.

“This is not a bailout of Greece,” said Eric Fine, who manages Van Eck G-175 Strategies, a hedge fund specializing in currencies and emerging market debt. “This is a bailout of the euro system.”

Solutions are also not easily forthcoming. “In the end, we’re all saying we don’t know how to deal with it,” said Dirk Hoffmann-Becking, a bank analyst with Alliance Bernstein in London. “We don’t know how the channels work, or where the problems will pop up next.”

 

http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2010/05/02/weekinreview/02marsh.html?...

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 08:23 | 327678 LeBalance
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Thanks, Duuude.

I am well aware of the fictional nature of countries and that a more realistic picture would be closer to (Power Elite)(Their Banks)(Country Construct)(citizens) as the PE do "legally" own everything.  I am just trying to build up in my mind the ethno-centric picture and how the functionally illiterate citizen might feel about this part of the grand shit storm.

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 09:35 | 327711 snowball777
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Their pentagram is upside down.

 

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 07:54 | 327668 kaiserhoff
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New GDP numbers are out, but the lefties aren't dancing around the May pole.  We "grew" at 3.5 % but over half was inventory build, the rest was consumer spending as in tax refunds and selling the family silverware.  If you think I'm kidding you need to get out more.  This country is bleeding out.

Note to Ben and Timmy.  If you've got a plan B, this might be a good time.  This dog won't hunt.  Unemployment is building.  There's a tsunami of foreclosures coming, and oh yeah, Europe and the states are about to implode.  Just thought you should know. 

Our last president was famous for his loyalty.  Commiebama, not so much.  I hear it's cold in Siberia.  You might want to pack some wool socks.  Have a nice day;).

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 09:42 | 327716 Ned Zeppelin
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All correct, but Obama is no worse, and no better than anyone before him.  POTUS is not in charge, and has little real power to accomplish anything. You are witnessing the Janitorial Presidency.

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 11:29 | 327807 kaiserhoff
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Where are the free market Democrats?

First principles:  the falacy of equivocation is to treat unequal things as equal.

Wed, 05/05/2010 - 17:49 | 333355 RockyRacoon
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There are no "free market" anybodys.  There are no free markets...period.

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 08:09 | 327673 youngandhealthy
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ZH is whining about USA's 20% quota of SDRs (in fact it is 17%) and its obligations to bail-out all other countries that has been cheating. I can tell you that EU has higher aggregated SDR quota than the USA and in the case of Greece, EU will top with at least another €35Bn. We live in a globalised world both on the asset and the liability side.

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 08:33 | 327681 jm
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Why should a US or German or ANY taxpayer be involved in this?

The issue is between too generous a set of creditors and a debtor nation in dire straights.

It's not whining to tell the pathetic to get their pants on and walk like men.  Bailout creeps need to learn some toughness from Latvians.

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 08:48 | 327686 AnAnonymous
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Tax payers are only involved in later terms.

 

Why people keep focusing on this point and acting like current tax payer was involved?

 

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 11:34 | 327808 Rogerwilco
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@youngandhealthy

How is Katy vanden Heuvel doing these days? You two must have had a nice conversation at yesterday's May Day festival.

Go spread your wealth around, I'll decide what to do with mine.

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 19:01 | 328305 akak
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"We live in a globalised world both on the asset and the liability side."

So, "from each according to their assets, to each according to their debt", eh, is that it?

Fuck you and your neo-Marxist attitude that lays claims for the profligacy of the short-sighted against the wealth of the responsible and/or the innocent.

Mon, 05/03/2010 - 04:27 | 328807 youngandhealthy
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Jeeez...calm down Limbaugh...

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 08:18 | 327675 ZackAttack
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Why does any sovereign bond yield any more than any other, then?

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 08:27 | 327680 doggings
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@ Ambrosiac.. heh, I reckon a couple of kilos of Gold for the island would be a fair deal?

not that cheap, but I could justify paying that much.

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 09:04 | 327697 doublethink
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Quote of the Day

 

“We will have make sacrifices that will be difficult but necessary…but at the end of my term in office Greece will be reborn.”     --G-Pap

 

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/08a87e4e-55c4-11df-b835-00144feab49a.html

 

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 09:10 | 327699 Miramanee
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RE: "...And at that point the politics of a US-funded world bailout really will come to the fore. Because while the Fed bailing out America is one thing due to the Fed's untouchable and unsupervisable status, the IMF, as a corporation, does not share the same "above the law" privileges. And in an election year, with Americans slowly realizing that the fate of the world is truly in their hands, and their tax money is being involuntarily taken away from them as we speak yet again, ahead of midterm elections, all bets are off..."

Tyler, I have a differing opinion here. The American public's tax money has nothing to do with this deal. The FED (and Treasury) can tweak the IMF's and ECB's reserve accounts upward---by trillions if they so choose---without ANY tax implications for the American public. At least from an operational standpoint this is true. Tax dollars are NOT necessary for the computer operators at the FED to add 1's and 0's to the reserve accounts of the ECB. The only rationale for raising taxes is for the government to see if the dollar still holds value. Tax increases, increases respected and adhered to by the public, means that the dollar remains viable because people need dollars to pay said taxes. If, or when, the people come to REFUSE to honor their tax liabilities, then AND ONLY THEN do the operational issues at the FED become mitigated.

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 09:45 | 327718 Ned Zeppelin
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"The American public's tax money has nothing to do with this deal."

That is of no interest to the folks in charge, who view these assets as their's to deploy irrespective of our opinion on the matter. Our bailout was no different on our shores - it benefited only the banks and the very wealthy, and had nothing to do with the best interests of the American taxpayer. We can only stand back and watch. 

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 10:01 | 327723 Miramanee
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@ NED Zep:

The point is NOT that ALL of this crap benefits the wealthy and super-wealthy. That's tautological silliness, with all due respect. The POINT is that taxes and the FED's operational abilities under a system of irredeemable floating currency are mutually exclusive issues. To make the assertion that American taxpayers will bear the brunt of our bailout of the Eurozone states or of the IMF is incorrect. Additions to the RESERVE ACCOUNTS at the FED are made irrespective of changes in tax policy. Heck, the Obama team could theoretically CUT taxes, and the FED (and Treasury) could still 'infuse' trillions MORE into ECB and IMF accounts at the FED.

The issue viz taxes has to do with the eventuality that Americans, who watch all of the goings on with regard to American bailout of EVERY BANK and EVERY INSTITUTION and EVERY NATION---and who themselves watch their standard of living collapse and their unemployment benefits evaporate, etc.---these Americans may come to eventually say "screw it all", and en masse refuse to service their tax bills. When THAT happens, IF that happens...then we're talking implosion of the dollar---and of the global economy.

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 10:47 | 327760 Implicit simplicit
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The continual creation of US dollars whether here or abroad would eventually induce  a "hidden" tax" in the long run by creating inflation. Ultimeately, this is the problem with creating fiat currencey with no backing in an economy that is not growing.

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 11:05 | 327777 Miramanee
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@ I.S.

Agreed, but with a caveat. Yes, this is "a" big potential problem. And, while I am more in the deflationary camp (viz massive private debt-deflation and deleveraging), I DO see inflationary pressures as being problematic over the mid-term.

HOWEVER...inflation would have to serve as the precursor to a citizen-based tax revolt. It is the citizens refusal (or inability) to pay taxes that would makes the dollar worthless, not the inflationary forces of current monetary policy.

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 11:55 | 327848 Bam_Man
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You are IMHO partially correct. Under such abuse, the US dollar would lose most of its status as "money". While still useful as a means to settle tax liabilities, its utility as a universal medium of exchange would be greatly impaired. The price of oil and gold would absolutely reflect this, and are indeed already beginning to.

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 12:16 | 327874 Implicit simplicit
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What's the od saying: infation in things you need and deflation in discretionary, or something like that. Bottom line creating money from nothing,  and chicks for free can't be a good thing for the economy. Well maybe not the chicks for free part.

The bottom 40% don't pay much income taxes, and this group are finding more ways to not pay other taxes as the economy slumps for them. Its a bifurcated economy where the top earners are doing ok but the bottom getting slammed. A lot more people working under the table and using bartering to make ends meet. Can't blame them. Not just a form of protest against the present system, but a means of survival.

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 12:20 | 327878 AnAnonymous
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Front-running inflation or waiting for the real inflation to pop in (you know, not the scrap people describe to be inflation, money chasing more goods djajdaj... but when mass production is no longer big enough to drown speculative efforts)

No matter what, the USD (or any other currency) is bound to buy less as goods are to become less numerous.

Once again, it sounds finer to buy when there are plenty on the table, meaning being fluid and freely emitted credits are a best than waiting for times when there is much less on the table.

 

But some people like so much to depict themselves  like victims they dont seem able to admit this point.

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 14:06 | 327956 Implicit simplicit
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You could see the opposite effect in real estate. Plenty of supply, low interest rates, and thus supposedly, discounted homes. However,  after the bond yields rise in response to the diminished dollar, mortgage rates will increase, but houses will fall further in price. This diconnect between inflationary interst rates and lower house prices  happens because the banks will still need to qualify pieople for loans, thus house prices fall when interest rates rise. The opposite of what brokers and bankers tel lyou.

Mon, 05/03/2010 - 05:10 | 328815 AnAnonymous
AnAnonymous's picture

And?

The sub-prime stuff was a clever trick to reroute resources towards the US to allow homes building.

The money paid now is the price that the US public can afford.

The US pumped it its home market in order to direct the prroduction towards its territory. 240k$ houses, an offer only possible in the US and a direct consequence of the high quality general environment in the US which has a price.

Reality: same houses are sold 80k$, many other places in the world to compete for this range of prices. Worst: in the US, 80k$ do not cover for labour costs. Making it impossible to build these houses in the US.

The subprime 'crisis' was a clever way to snatch resources that could not have been used in the US.

Houses are in the US. Nowhere else. Good for the US.

Maybe time to stop playing victims?

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 10:59 | 327772 Madcow
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The asymptotes will have their way with the fiat masters.

There's no way of preventing a deflationary (hyper-inflationary) economic collapse. There can't be 'reform' until the current system fails.

Citizens of the West will quit paying taxes because 1) they won't have any money to pay taxes; and 2) the lucky few with remaining incomes will come to realize that "government" is really just a bunch of gangsters, thieves and parasites.  People tend to lose their enthusiasm for cooperating with the "State" when the "State" is revealed as a massive criminal enterprise. 

 

 

 

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 11:13 | 327785 Miramanee
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@ Madcow

A tad hyperbolic...but, I guess that is your right considering your name.

I happen to think that it will take a very VERY long time before the American government, and the fiat dollar, hit the skids due to a tax revolution. Remember, before the government allowed such conditions to evolve, they would create a federally-funded job system, in which any unemployed man or woman could earn $8-10/hour doing any of a myriad of government-sponsored things. How about a million people cleaning up the oil from the Gulf Coast beaches!!

My point is cynical, I know. But the government DOES have two things on its side: (1) The ability to create as much money in the near term as it wants to, and (b) the ability to create as many jobs in the near term as it wants to (Can you say, "Census"?) These jobs would mean more taxpayers, more spending, and thus---AT LEAST FOR NOW---the survival of the dollar.

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 13:19 | 327917 taraxias
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Nonsense.

The survival of the dollar is solely depended on the rest of the world's willingness to accept it for oil and other commodities. When these foreign entities realize that the game is being sustained only by more and more printing, the game will be over right there and then.

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 13:51 | 327930 Bam_Man
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Precisely. It has been my contention for quite a while that at some point one or more Gulf States will announce that they no longer accept irredeemable fiat dollars as payment for their precious and ever-dwindling oil resources.

This will ultimately be what forces the G20, kicking and screaming, back onto some sort of a (fractional) gold standard.

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 15:12 | 328051 Miramanee
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@ Bam Man

Why in heaven's name would they do that?!! It would be akin to shooting oneself in the foot with a Howitzer. AS LONG AS THE DOLLAR HAS VALUE, THE GULF STATES WANT THEIR ACCOUNTS AT THE FED STUFFED FULL OF THEM!!!

IMHO, you are ALL missing the key point in these discussions. There is absolutely no reason for foreign entities to swear off dollars, because dollars are still valuable. AND, dollars are valuable because Americans think they need these dollars to pay their taxes.

Taxes as such are not the issue---it is the BELIEF that dollars are needed to PAY said taxes.

Sun, 05/02/2010 - 15:00 | 328033 Miramanee
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@ Taraxias

You are missing my fundamental point. The rest of the world will continue to accept the dollar as long as the American people accept the dollar. And the American people "voice" their acceptance of the dollar by agreeing that they NEED those dollars to pay taxes. Now...do I think that, at some point, the American people might rebel against a dollar that is being used to 'save the world' from all of its own fraud and malfeasance? Yes I do. But to state that "...When these foreign entities realize that the game is being sustained only by more and more printing, the game will be over right there and then..." puts the horse in front of the cart. The rest of the world already KNOWS that their reserve accounts at the FED are being electronically pumped. They are FINE with that---as long as the American taxpayer continues to believe in HIS need to accrue dollars to pay is taxes.

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