Greece

Tyler Durden's picture

As Europe's Most Pathological Liar Departs, Questions About Europe's Band-Aid Union Reemerge





We doubt many tears will be shed over the now official departure of Europe's most embarrassing political figurehead: the head of the Euro-area finance ministers, one Jean-Claude Juncker, whose presence did more documented damage to the credibility of Europe than... well, we would say virtually anyone else, but then again since everyone else in the European pantheon is a shining example of DSM IV-level sociopathology, we are kinda stuck. But anyway: Juncker is finally gone "he’s tired of Franco-German interference in managing the region’s debt crisis." And while the decision was known for a while, the ultimate catalyst is rather unexpected, and exposes just how frail the entire Eurozone is: “They act as if they are the only members of the group,” Juncker said today at a podium discussion in Hamburg." If this is coming from the man who admittedly lies for a living, we can't imagine just how bad the truth about the internal fissures within the Eurozone must be. Actually, we can.

 
Phoenix Capital Research's picture

The Market Calls BS on Spain's Efforts to Cover Its Toxic Banking Debt





To give you an idea of how bad things are with the cajas, consider that in February 2011 the Spanish Government implemented legislation demanding all Spanish banks have equity equal to 8% of their “risk-weighted assets.” Those banks that failed to meet this requirement had to either merge with larger banks or face partial nationalization. The deadline for meeting this capital request was September 2011. Between February 2011 and September 2011, the number of cajas has in Spain has dropped from 45 to 17.

 
 
Tyler Durden's picture

Goose-Stepping Hitler-ites Threaten Greece's Utopia





In this case we really do hate to say we-told-you-so but our concerns over social unrest and the rise of extreme nationalism (here, here and here) in an austerity-focused and massively unemployed Europe appear to becoming ever more prescient. Just last week we saw extreme parties in France of all places receive high levels of votes and in a note today from BBC News, the leader of the Greek Socialist Pasok party, Mr. Creosote himself - Evangelos Venizelos, told a rally in Patras that voters should not allow neo-Nazis to "goose-step into Parliament with Hitler salutes"

 
Tyler Durden's picture

Larry Summers Resumes Exercises In Pontificating Sophistry





Over the weekend, just because apparently someone really needed content at any cost (in this case zero), we got a new intellectual stillborn from none other than the man who more than anyone is responsible for the global economic collapse the world has been in for the past 4 years, and from which it is nowhere even close in escaping. The man of course is Larry Summers, who first crushed global finance, then Harvard, and finally Obama's economic platform, whom the FT saw fit to give the chance to pontificate on such concepts at growth and austerity, because apparently, growth through austerity, whereby banking sector debt is written down in parallel is not growth, but there is some subsegment of "growth", heretofore unknown, that Europe has not tried before, and will instead focus on that going forward. To paraphrase Lewis Black: don't think about that sentence too hard, or blood will shoot out of your nose.

 
Tyler Durden's picture

Interactive Map Of Europe's Recessionary Tide





As noted earlier, and in the aftermath of both the UK and Spain officially double dipping, very soon a majority of Europe will be submerged under the latest recessionary tide which has already engulfed Spain, UK, Greece, Italy,  Portugal, Ireland, Belgium, Denmark,  Holland, Czech Republic, and  Slovenia. The primary wildcard remains Germany, although there is a more than 50% chance that following some very weak PMI data, the country will follow up its already negative Q4 GDP print with another decline, officially pushing the European growth dynamo into recession as well (as for France which reps and warrants that everything is great, it is not as if anyone actually believes those numbers, especially after Hollande becomes president in one week). For everyone who wants to track the European double dip tsunami in real time, the following interactive chart from Reuters is just for you.

 
Tyler Durden's picture

Give Austerity A Chance: Growth Spending Failed





The markets may decide to play along with the renewed talk of growth and the death of austerity, but it is shocking how quickly writers and the media have latched on to the idea that growth will somehow save us and that the entire problem is the fault of austerity. Although it seems like it has been around for awhile, austerity is fairly new.  I don’t think Greece even got nailed with austerity until May of 2010.  In September 2010 when EFSF and ESM were first officially launched, Portugal and Ireland were both contributing members.  The first time austerity was mentioned in Spain and Italy had to be the summer of 2011, if not later? Until that time, I assume growth was part of the policy of most countries?  I find it hard to believe any country engaged in an anti-growth policy?  Was not every policy in Europe, up until at least 2010 if not beyond, actually a “growth” policy?  Why did they fail to create enough growth to stop the debt crisis? Ah, that is the other problem.  It isn’t just growth that is needed, certainly not to comfort the bond market, it is growth that surpasses the amount spent (borrowed) to create it.

 
Tyler Durden's picture

Frontrunning: April 30





  • Only the cattle cars are missing: Greece opens detention camp for immigrants as election looms (Reuters)
  • China really wants that Iran oil - China mulls guarantees for ships carrying Iran oil (Reuters)
  • U.S. eyes testy China talks, Chen backer expects Chinese decision (Reuters, FT)
  • Possible arsenic poisoning probed in death of coroner's official (LA Times)
  • Europe’s Anti-Austerity Calls Mount as Elections Near (Bloomberg)
  • Law firm Dewey dumps executive; talks with rival end (Reuters)
  • Greek bank appeals for fresh equity (FT)
  • Banks seek to put pressure on small rivals (FT)
  • Obama falls short of meteoric expectations abroad (Reuters)
 
Tyler Durden's picture

Overnight Sentiment: Ambivalent





Another day of ugly news out of Europe, with both macroeconomic and monetary data coming in to confirm that downward slope of the European forward trajectory (not to mention funny: below is a chart of Greek retail sales. Hardly any commentary is necessary). Yet despite some recently gravity in the EURUSD, for the time being the futures are trending flat to slightly down, perfectly ambivalent as to how will ease first as long as someone eases. Will this sustain, or will a disappointing Chicago PMI at 9:45 am once again send stocks first plunging then soaring on hope of imminent NEW QE? We will find out shortly. In the meantime, here is a recap of the overnight market action.

 
Tyler Durden's picture

Spain Officially Double Dips, Joins 10 Other Western Countries In Recession





The good news: Spanish Q1 GDP printed -0.3% on expectations of a -0.4% Q/Q decline. Unfortunately this is hardly encouraging for the nearly 25% of the labor force which is unemployed, and for consumers whose purchasing habits imploded following record plunges in retail sales as observed last week. The bad news: Spain now joins at least 10 other Western countries which have (re) entered a recession. Per DB: "Spain will today likely join a growing list of Western Developed world countries in recession. Last week the UK was added to a recession roll call that includes Greece, Italy, Portugal, Ireland, Belgium, Denmark, Holland, Czech Republic, and Slovenia. Debt ladened countries with interest rates close to zero have limited flexibility to fight the business cycle and this impotency will continue for many years." Alas, the abovementioned good news won't last: from Evelyn Hermman, economist at BNP - "The Pace of Spain’s economic contraction may increase in coming quarters as austerity measures bite more sharply." Of course, it is the "good news" that sets the pace each and every day, as the bad news is merely a further catalyst to buy, buy, buy as the ECB will allegedly have no choice but to do just that when the time comes. And something quite surprising from DB's morning comment: "If it were us in charge we would allow more defaults which would speed up the cleansing out of the system thus encouraging a more efficient resource allocation in the economy at an earlier stage." Wait, this is Deustche Bank, with assets which are nearly on par with German GDP, saying this? Wow...

 
Tyler Durden's picture

The View From The Bridge Over The Rotten Boroughs of Europe





Once upon a time when Nigel Farage got up to speak you often wondered whether he was the full ticket, but today when he gives the European parliament the benefit of his opinion he is the only one making any sense and that includes most of our other politicos back home. Instead of planning to get out of the EU madhouse we have confirmed that £10 billion of our money, yours and mine, has been re-pledged to the IMF “pour encourager les autres” as I am sure was the phrase Christine Lagarde used as she sidled up alongside an impressionable young chancellor, who is totally out of his depth in such company – Lagarde’s youthful pastime of synchronised swimming for the French national team is now paying dividends. It is only a promise at this stage, but it already has parliamentary approval – slid through in a dark period rather like TARP in the States – without any proper scrutiny and an absence of opprobrium from the main stream media the supposed guardians of free speech. If only…

 
Tyler Durden's picture

Don't Forget Portugal: MS Sees A Second Bail-Out By September With A Bail-In To Follow





With all eyes firmly planted on Spain, the little-Escudo-that-could has quietly slipped off the heading-into-the-abyss list of the mainstream media. Little was made this week of the fact that 10Y Portuguese bond yields dropped to seven-month lows - except by us of course where we explained that this is almost entirely due to the CDS-Bond basis trade 'arb-du-jour' that has placed a technical bid under Portuguese bonds. Between the help from LTRO and the fact that ISDA is under-pressure to improve/amend CDS rules to 'honor the spirit of the CDS contract to the fullest extent' which implicitly reduces the massive 'event' premium uncertainty between CDS and Bond risks for distressed-names (thanks to the ECB's actions in Greece), every bond in the short- to mid-term maturity of Portugal appears notably rich - with only the longest-dated bonds reflecting the crisis that remains. As we described in detail here, the real Debt/GDP of Portugal is around 140% (notably higher than the EC estimates of 111% once contingent liabilities are take account of) and the issues that face this small nation are entirely unresolved with bank recapitalization needs of at least EUR12bn and a highly indebted private sector. The bottom-line is that optically-pleasing bond improvements recently have been entirely due to synthetic credit arbitrage and, as Morgan Stanley notes, the nation remains mired in the three risks of contingent liabilities, bank recap needs, and a grossly indebted private sector; leaving a second bailout very likely by September 2012 and the challenging debt dynamics likely to mean a restructuring.

 
Tyler Durden's picture

"We Are Number One!", Or Why At Least Broke Greece Is Not America





A rather curious phenomenon that has been observed in the popular press lately is that on those rare occasions when total global public debt is demonstrated correctly on a country by country basis, i.e., including contingent liabilities, as well as various trans-national, public-sector backed guarantees (such as EFSF backstops), and most importantly the Net Present Value of pensions and healthcare, or the cost of the welfare state expressed in current dollars, there is one country that is  systematically excluded. That would be the United States. Today we set the record straight by adding the US to the list where it rightfully belongs, and also answer the rhetorical question of why the US just so happens to be consistently omitted from such column-chart based, hair-raising classifications. Simply said, it is quite clear why the now defaulted Hellenic Republic could and should be forgiven in saying that “at least Greece is not America…”

 
Phoenix Capital Research's picture

The Truth About the Spanish Banking System That 99% of Analysts Fail to Grasp





 

To give you an idea of how bad things are with the cajas, consider that in February 2011 the Spanish Government implemented legislation demanding all Spanish banks have equity equal to 8% of their “risk-weighted assets.” Those banks that failed to meet this requirement had to either merge with larger banks or face partial nationalization. The deadline for meeting this capital request was September 2011. Between February 2011 and September 2011, the number of cajas has in Spain has dropped from 45 to 17.

 
 
Tyler Durden's picture

First Real Greek Bailout: Electricity





While Greece has had its fair-share of EURs funneled to it and through it over the course of the last year or two, it appears they have now created their first 'internal' bailout as things go from bad to worse. As Athens News reports, Greece will provide EUR250mm in emergency funds to its ailing electricity providers to prevent a California-style energy crisis. This liquidity injection to the country's power utlities was yet another unintended consequence of government intervention action. An increasing number of consumers stopped paying their electricity bills following the TROIKA's Greek government's infliction of EUR1.7bn property taxation via the electricity providers. The main power utility PPC had a liquidity hole blown through it as non-payments mounted and while regulators claimed the system needed at least EUR350mm to stay afloat, the government has agreed to allow PPC to hold EUR250mm of the property tax it has collected on behalf of the state until June 30 - by which time, it is hoped the utility will have managed to secure other lending facilities. Quite an incredible move - to force the electricity provider to gather the property taxes - and while this attempt clearly failed we suspect the next move will be food-and-water-rationing without proof of tax payment.

 
Tyler Durden's picture

Leaving Ponzi In The Dust





The European Central Bank prints money and hands it to the banks in undiminished size and at an interest rate which compels massive carry trades. The European banks buy sovereign debt that helps to lower the price of the sovereign’s funding costs, the banks use some of the money to increase their own capital and lend some of the money to individuals and corporations in the nations where they are domiciled. The money gets used and eventually dries up and a some of the capital is used to come into compliance with Basel III. The yields of the periphery nations fall but then begin to rise again. Germany, using Target-2, keeps lending money to the other central banks which use part of the money to support their currency, the Euro. The circle is then completed and the equity markets, notably in America, trade off of the strength of the Euro and some days at almost a point by point movement. Never before in the history of the world has such a grand scheme been implemented and in such an all-encompassing fashion. The unlimited amount of money that is available, because they can print all the money they want, has allowed Europe to game the world’s financial system while no one looked or caught on to the scheme. The world’s fiscal system has been rigged by Europe.

 
Syndicate content
Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!