With all eyes currently transfixed on Iran’s nuclear future, there is seemingly little attention being paid to another landmark Middle Eastern nuclear trend, spearheaded by Russia.
How hard do you work compared to the rest of the world?
Greece's outspoken Energy Minister Panagiotis Lafazanis laid out the details for the country's pipeline project with Russia on Thursday and went out of his way to let PM Alexis Tsipras know that the referendum "no" vote is "not going to become a humiliating 'yes'".
1. Greece is already in default to the IMF
2. Greece and the rest of the Eurozone are further apart than ever
3. Capital controls are notoriously hard to unwind
4. The “no” vote protects the Eurozone’s politicians from looking like they pushed Greece out
MAD – Mutually Assured Destruction – is way over. It kept a somewhat uneasy peace during seven decades of Cold War. Cold War 2.0 is as hardcore as it gets. And with all those Breedhate Strangeloves on the loose, nuclear madness is now at five seconds to midnight.
A Greek exit from the euro would change everything. The greatest change being simply doubt and fear regarding the outlook for other vulnerable EU nations, EU banks and the EU banking and financial system. We discuss short and long term considerations, best and case outcomes, and wealth preservation strategies.
The Greek case offers quite a relevant view into the world of 21st century monetary alchemy, because that is what it really amounts to. What is left, however, is the worst of all cases; no recovery, no lending and now just more financial imbalance piled onto the same negative pressures and imbalances that never really went away. What is amazing is how short the attention of “investors” may be, and how they allow themselves to think monetary complexity passes for proficiency or even expertise despite all and continued observation otherwise.
- Greek PM optimistic on debt deal as banks bleed (Reuters)
- Greek central bank chief says banking system stable (Kathimerini)
- ECB Said to Confer on Emergency Greek Aid Amid Cash Flight (BBG)
- More tax "avoidance": Citigroup to shift European retail banking HQ to Dublin (Reuters)
- Florist's tip led police to Charleston shooting suspect (USAToday)
- Asian shares edge higher on Fed caution, China sell-off intensifies (Reuters)
- Toyota in damage control mode after American exec arrested (Reuters)
- Venezuela Oil Loans Go Awry for China (WSJ)
Greece completes stage one of the dreaded "Russian pivot" as energy ministers from Athens and Moscow ink an MOU on Gazprom's Turkish Stream pipeline. Meanwhile, Gazprom signs a deal with Shell and others to double the capacity of the Nord line, a move which will, over time, decrease the energy giant's dependence on Ukraine for transport.
Hungary becomes the first European country to sign on for China's ambitious Silk Road initiative. Beijing hopes the program will serve to relieve the country's industrial overcapacity problem while facilitating a tough transition to a consumer-led economic model. Given the growing number of headwinds China faces, "One Belt, One Road" may represent the counrty's 'one chance' to rescue the flagging economy.
Greece has received what The New York Times recently described as “dueling sales pitches” on two proposed natural gas pipelines, with the US pressing Athens to support The Southern Gas Corridor rather than Gazprom's Turkish Stream project. It appears Moscow may have made the more convincing case because, much to Washington's dismay, Greece is set to sign an MOU for the Greek portion of The Turkish Stream pipeline in June.
June is off with a bang, and a very busy week in the macro economic calendar, both globally and in the US, which culminates with the latest "most important ever" payrolls report, one which will surely be closely watched by a Fed which may hike as soon as a few weeks from now (but probably won't).
Today’s Eurogroup meeting will be key in determining where Greece and its creditors negotiations currently stand. Over in the US today, it’s the usual post payrolls lull with just the labor market conditions data expected.
The US is applying political pressure to Greece in an effort to dissuade Athens from participating in Russia's Turkish Stream Pipeline project which has been implicitly used, at various times, as a negotiating tactic in discussions with EU creditors. As the Times suggests, this is further evidence that Washington is becoming increasingly concerned that the world is rapidly shifting away from the US-dominated, unipolar model that has existed, in one form or another, since the collapse of the Soviet Union. This consternation is beginning to manifest itself in the revitalization of Cold War politics.
Quickly looking at the potential market moving events this week, US payrolls on Friday will be the clear focus. In terms of expectations, our US colleagues are expecting a +225k print which matches the current Bloomberg consensus, while they expect the unemployment rate to drop one-tenth to 5.4%. Elsewhere, Thursday’s UK Election will be closely followed while Greece will once again be front and center.