Tag Archives: European debt crisis

Greece Capitulates to Reality

The temporary “compromise” found between the European Union (EU) and Greece is nothing short of a full capitulation by Athens to economic realities, at least for the time being. On the surface, the can has been kicked down the road for four more months. But it is notable that none of the requests advanced by [...]

A Tale of Two Countries

Developments in the separate crises in Ukraine and Greece are likely to offer some upside lift to financial markets, at least in the short term. My thoughts: • The ceasefire in Eastern Ukraine is a clear positive for financial markets and reduces concerns about geostrategic and military risks

Mr. Draghi Delivers

In the end, Mario Draghi delivered. The much expected move into quantitative easing is now a reality, as announced by the president of the European Central Bank (ECB) today. The ECB will purchase government bonds, debt securities issued by European institutions and private sector bonds at the pace of 60 billion euros per month until September [...]

Europe: QE and Greece in the Balance

This is a crucial week. On Thursday, we expect the European Central Bank (ECB) to announce the much anticipated plan for asset purchases, aka quantitative easing. On Sunday, Greece will vote for a new parliament, where anti-European forces may win

Swiss Central Bank Rocks Currency Markets

Earlier today, the Swiss National Bank (SNB) discontinued efforts to hold the Swiss franc’s exchange rate with the euro at 1.20 francs. Since September 2011, Switzerland had capped the value of the franc, to contain intense pressure to appreciate against the European single currency and other major currencies. Switzerland is considered a financial safe haven

European Bank Stress Tests: Just One Step in the Right Direction

The European Central Bank (ECB)  has announced the results of the stress test exercise over the banking system. Out of 130 banks scrutinized 25 failed, revealing capital shortfalls for a total of about 25 billion euros. Out of these 25 banks, nine are Italian, three Greek and three Cypriot. In several cases, plans were already [...]

Five Themes to Start the Week

Economic developments abroad were not in short supply during the past weekend, nor will they be in the week ahead. 1.    The first round of the Brazilian presidential election was, as expected, inconclusive, but somewhat surprisingly the center-right candidate Aécio Neves placed second behind incumbent President Dilma Rousseff. Now he will vie for the presidency [...]

ECB Decision: The Choice of the Glutton, with Nothing Left on the Table

Standing before a smorgasbord of policy options, the president of the European Central Bank (ECB), Mario Draghi, made the choice of the glutton; he chose them all: lower interest rates, expansion of the balance sheet, short-term financing to banks and forward guidance. Short of purchasing sovereign bonds and throwing in the kitchen sink, practically every [...]