Today, in a much anticipated outcome, Portugal will vote to replace the caretaker Prime Minister Jose Socrates with opposition center-right Social Democrat Pedro Passos Coelho. Alas this is largely a symbolic vote as the new guy is just a continuation of the policies of the old guy: "Passos Coelho, who cast his vote at a polling station in Amadora on the outskirts of Lisbon, where reporters by far outnumbered voters, said Portugal had to stick to the bailout terms to regain market confidence and return to growth." Even the young people understand this: "Ricardo, a voter in his late 20s, expressed a common view that any new government just has to march to the beat of the lenders' drum. "I think the election won't bring anything new because it's the IMF in charge of the country now ... Any party that gets to the government will just have to follow IMF rules, " he said." Spot on. And we wonder how long before Mohamed El-Erian, or some other actual thinker, has an op-ed discussing the pitfalls of what we have now trademarked as "The Congress of Berlin 2.0: the scramble for Europe."
It's the weekend, which means another Spiegel hit piece over the solvency and stability of the Eurozone is overdue. Sure enough, the publication comes through admirably with "New Greek aid to cost more than one hundred billion euros." As a reminder, until as recently as 24 hours ago it was expected that the bailout would be at most €80 billion, with half coming from Greek privatization efforts. Naturally, this means that even more money will be transferred from taxpayer pockets to bank capital deficiency accounts. Next up: Greek bailouts 3, 4, 5, by which point Goldman will have hopefully achieved its life long ambition of opening a Goldman Sachs-branded ATM at the main entrance to the Acropolis, which GS will have LBOed using discount window capital.
Berlin Conference 2.0: Russia To Bail Out Hyperinflationary Belarus As Colonization Scramble Heats UpSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 06/04/2011 13:01 -0400
Who said that only Germany is allowed to annex Greece (and soon Ireland and Portugal)? (and if Der Spiegel has anything to say about it, again, Bailout #2 is far from certain... more on that shortly). In a surprising move, Russia has decided to remind everyone just how irrelevant the IMF is now that Russia and China run the "sovereign rescue" show, and that it too can play the imperialist game just as well as the Troica. Following the recent hyperdevaluation of the Belarus Ruble as discussed on Zero Hedge, and the country's collapse into a hyperinflationary hell, Reuters has just reported that Putin, that "White Knight" of former USSR imperialist dominance, has decided to "bailout" Belarus. From Reuters: "Cash-strapped Belarus will receive a three-year $3 billion loan from a Russia-led regional bailout fund as it seeks to stabilize its economy, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin's spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Saturday. The former Soviet republic on Friday unveiled a series of measures to end the crisis, including a vow to cut its budget deficit in half, after its currency lost 36 percent of its value in May and inflation reached 20.2 percent." It is unclear just how many billions in funds will need to be derived from forced "privatization" of Belarus assets for the benefit of the old KGB guard, or what the interest rate on the rescue loans will be. What is more than clear is that as more and more countries fall into the toxic debt spiral, their neighbors who actually have capital and/or natural resources (ergo the irrelevance of the IMF), will "bail them out" only to remind the world that colonization is what it has always been truly about. Berlin Conference ver 2.0 - here we come.
By William Banzai Yeats
Someone keep an eye on Waddell and Reed at all times. Repeat: all times. Because once they, and the market, and the Troica realize that the passage of Bailout 2 will lead to a revolution, it will get very, very interesting. "Protesters belonging to the left-wing The All-Workers Militant Front (PAME) union unfolded a giant banner from the roof of the finance ministry building on the central Syntagma square, calling for a nationwide strike against the new austerity measures that the government agreed to take in return for the new bailout package. "From dawn today forces of PAME have symbolically occupied the finance ministry, calling on workers to rise, organize their struggle and prevent the government's barbarous and anti-popular measures from passing," the front said, AFP reported."
Anything negative can be called “transitory.” Commodity prices are rising, I am nervous. Don’t worry, it’s transitory. Wait a minute, now the economic statistics are rolling over? Transitory! But Bernank, I don’t have a job and just joined the ranks of record food stamp participation (it is now 44 million people). Quiet sheep, let the adults deal with it. Besides, it’s…well you get it. So the brilliance of it all is that no matter how bad things get, some talking head can come out there and tell you it’s temporary. The term “soft patch” is just a another way of saying it. Not only is it a way to give a downtrodden people hope while they are being robbed, but it also allows for additional time for the Central Bankers to put the final nail in your coffin. All Americans have to do to look at our future is pay attention to what is being done to Greece and Ireland. Greece of course is furthest along the path to becoming a slave colony of the European banks and their puppets at the ECB. They are being told to sell off assets in order to protect the bond values of insolvent banks. This is simply a leveraged buyout of Greece by those that control the distribution channel of money. When EVERYONE is broke, the player that comes out on top is the one that can create the money versus the one that cannot.
Some thoughts on pensions seeding funds after my day trip to Toronto...
Troica Demands Deep Public Sector Cuts, Higher Taxes As Part Of Greek Bailout #2, Or My Big Fat Greek AnschlussSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 06/03/2011 11:37 -0400
So here it is:
- EU, IMF: GREECE NEEDS TO REINVIGORATE STRUCTURAL REFORMS (so, fire more people and generate more GDP with whoever is left?)
- EU, IMF: GREECE WILL REDUCE PUBLIC SECTOR EMPLOYMENT (so, fire even more peple)
- EU, IMF: GREECE TO REDUCE TAX EXEMPTIONS, RAISE PROPERTY TAXES (So, generate more GDP by taxing people more?)
- EU, IMF: `AMBITIOUS' MID-TERM PLAN, WILL MEET 2011-2015 TARGETS (If the targets are all Greek bankruptcy, yes)
- EU, IMF: OVERALL ASSESSMENT GREEK PROGRAM `SIGNIFICANT PROGRESS (uh, where?)
- EU, IMF: GREEK ECONOMY TO STABILISE AT TURN OF YEAR (Idiots)
And now, the people get angry. Expect live webcast from Syntagma square shortly.
And so here we are, with austerity measures and higher taxes occurring in Europe because of bankers’ greed and dishonesty. Having realized that their politicians aren’t going to do the right thing, the people are now openly expressing their disgust at the ballot box (Angela Merkel’s party is getting slammed in Germany for supporting the bailouts) and the streets (protests are occurring across Europe). And it’s just a taste of what’s coming to the US.
Just out on Bloomberg: GREECE SAYS EU-IMF REVIEW COMPLETED POSITIVELY
Of course, since this is merely another lie, nobody cares, but the robots will likely go nuts with the EURUSD any second.
...You will need it. The EURUSD has officially confirmed the much dreaded "Insane YoYo" formation. As a reminder the last time we had a dreaded chart spotting (The Hindenburg Omen from August 12, 2010), the Fed was forced to launch QE2 two weeks later. On a more serious note, the imminent announcement of a favorable Troica report on Greece will likely send the pair up 100 pips.
Here are the key scheduled events over the next several months in Europe. These are the known events. Uknown ones, such as the expulsion of Greece, or the unwind of the monetary experiment, a revolution here and there, are obviously not noted.
In addition to the weak NFP number expected today which should put further pressure on a dollar, already trading at a several week low, Greek Ta Nea reports that the catalytic announcement by the Troika on the Greek economy is expected to come out later today. Unlike previous rumors that Greece was expected to miss every bailout parameter, the rumor this time is that the report will show a "mixed picture" meaning that the market is supposed to believe that there is a risk that the next tranche, worth €12 billon, of Greece's current E110 billion aid package, may not be disbursed. Of course it will be: the last thing Europe's bankers will do, especially after all the recent posturing, is to shoot themselves in the foot, and before the weekend at that. As a result we expect a double whammy of USD hits, which however will mean that the EURUSD will soon be back to levels that are high enough (1.46-1.48) that will make the announcement of QE3 problematic, as the next step lower in the USD would likely lead to a EURUSD of 1.70-1.80.
The idea of turning the EU into a Bankster's Paradise (where you lose sovereignty to your creditors) slapped the Dollar down to it's lows of the day and boosted the EU markets and US futures and gave us our re-shorting opportunity on oil.
This morning, amidst news of Moodys cutting Greece's debt rating to Caa1, I came across a phrase I wish I'd thought of first, reading through a friend's morning commentary. The phrase? "Too Stupid to Stop". According to Bill Blain, Senior Director at Newedge in London, and self-professed Euro skeptic, "'Too Stupid to Stop' is based on politicians behaving as rational maximisers of their electoral objectives." He was referring to the real reason behind all the bank-demanded bailout loans for austerity measures throughout Europe. In the United States, that mantra can be extended to include appointed officials, like Treasury Secretary, Tim Geithner (still not admitting our record debt increase came directly from the $4 trillion worth of Treasury issuance and other forms of assistance extended to our banking system since late 2008, as we endure his stomach-churning 'show-begging' to the GOP for a debt cap raise) and Fed Chairman, Ben Bernanke (ditto). It also, of course, applies to congress people whose political survival depends on corporate and bank contributions and financial support, the ones that believe the Dodd-Frank bill changes anything. Rather than considering how governments have systematically done, and continue to do, the wrong (as in immoral, unfair, and uneconomically sound) thing by trying to preserve banks, any politicians possessing the ability to think independently (an oxymoron, I know) should be asking themselves instead, how clever they could be about closing them down. Take a cue from Iceland. But, the 'Too Stupid to Stop" behavior, prevents this from occurring.