In a speech given in Berlin, the ever-vocal German finance minister Wolfgang Schaeuble appeared less than vociferous about the new levered EFSF plan and further lambasted Geithner's 'plan' in as politically correct manner as he could. Bloomberg headlines include:
*SCHAEUBLE SAYS `WILL NOT SPEND OUR WAY' OUT OF CRISIS
*SCHAEUBLE SAYS `SOLIDARITY HAS LIMITS,' REQUIRES RETURN EFFORTS
*SCHAEUBLE SAYS `IMMEDIATE FISCAL REFORMS ARE OF THE ESSENCE'
And the kicker in response to questions on Geithner, the pithy response:
*SCHAEUBLE SAYS EASIER TO GIVE ADVICE THAN TAKE IT
He further seemed to back away from the idea of any levered EFSF strategy (though not explicitly) with the following comments:
*SCHAEUBLE SAYS INCREASING EFSF WOULD DAMAGE SOME AAA RATINGS
*SCHAEUBLE SAYS WILL ENHANCE EFSF IN MOST EFFICIENT WAY IF MUST
*SCHAEUBLE SAYS MONETARY POLICY `NOT THE WAY' TO SOLVE EURO WOES
*SCHAEUBLE SAYS `NO COMFORTABLE WAY OUT' OF CRISIS FOR EUROPE
*SCHAEUBLE SAYS EVERY STATE MUST PREPARE OWN BANK BACKSTOP PLANS
*SCHAEUBLE SAYS ASKED FOR BANK BACKSTOP PLANS FOR NEXT ECOFIN
And yet we keep squeezing higher on the hope that extending this crisis another few years will solve everything.