If you can believe it, even though the Fed has provided financial flows and assisting speculative flows so Wall Street, banking and hedge funds can glean mega-profits, it still has not provided enough liquidity for additional GDP growth. The small and medium sized businesses have been shut out. The latter participants do not play those games, it is the propriety trading desks, hedge funds and the remainder of the leveraged speculating community that takes advantage of the excess liquidity and the Bernanke put of keeping bonds and stocks up artificially. The Fed and the others are sustaining this process. There are negatives for the Fed and their friends, higher commodity and gold and silver prices. The Fed and banks temporarily took care of that and haven’t quite finished their latest short-term foray in that sector. There are still fears as well regarding Greek debt fears and their CDS, Credit Default Swaps, and those of other euro zone members. They could still blow up in everyone’s faces in a partial if not total default, which is very likely. Banks are on the wrong side of this trade as well as the bond trade, not only with Greece, but with five other nations as well.
In the final analysis papering over the problem never works. The problems also reemerge with new additional problems. The combination of excessive speculation and liquidity and too big to fail is going to end badly, as it always has. De-leveraging will eventually rear its ugly head.
As we said, Greece and others could cause extensive bond and CDS problems and that is not only being reflected in a lower euro, but in higher Greek bond yields of 16-3/8% in their 10-year notes and 24-3/4% in two-year yields, and Portugal, Ireland and Spain are not far behind. The socialists just lost the latest election in Spain in a big way showing the public is fed up with the lies of government and the bankers. The euro is attempting to break $1.40 to the downside as a result of those election results and the Greek impasse. It is obvious that Greece cannot service its debt and reduce its deficit and the other deficient nations are in the same boat. The CDS marketplace would be severely disrupted if there were a sovereign debt default. That fear, of contagion, could be seen in higher rates in Spain, some .30%, the highest upward move this year. Greece, Ireland and Portugal have problems that can never be resolved and Spain, Italy and Belgium are not far behind.
Spain is implementing austerity, but that means like in recent weeks millions have demonstrated in 72 Spanish cities. The 17 autonomous regions have doubled their debt in the last 2-1/2 years. The socialists just did not know when to stop, now they are out of office. Spain is going down. There is no way they can sustain. That should bring the CDS situation front and center. It will also increase unemployment for those 18 to 35 to 40% or more. It is not surprising that half of the protestors were in that age group.
Greek PM George Papandreou, who secretly promised Europe’s elitists bankers that he would sell-off and or pledge Greek state assets, wants to sell stakes in Hellenic Telecommunications, Public Power Corp., Postbank, the ports of Piraeus and Thessaloniki and their local water company. All supposedly worth $70 billion. The bankers, of course, say they are worth far less. They want to buy them for 10% to 20% of what they are worth – so what else is new. The Cabinet went along with the giveaway, as expected, and without a whimper. The EU is demanding all the assets be sold off immediately, so the bankers can buy them as cheaply as possible. The threat by the bankers is if you do not sell and sell fast for a pittance, then we won’t fund loans of $42 billion over the next 2-1/2 to 3 years. If not funded it would be “re-profiled” another new euphemism for default and debt restructuring, or perhaps debt extension.