by ilene - May 21st, 2010 5:04 am
Courtesy of Rom at Bondsquawk
As the markets tumbled around the globe, risks are increasing that the European debt crisis could spill over and derail a global recovery and into a global recession according to the U.K.’s Telegraph.
Bill Gross of bond fund Pimco said that hedge funds were starting to liquidate their positions in a bid to preserve their capital – a worrying “mini relapse” towards 2008 territory.
Andrew Roberts, head of European rates strategy at RBS, said “Great Depression II” could now be approaching, adding: “It now has potential to speed toward its conclusion; a European $1trn package which does little and political panic tells you we are about to reach the end of the road. The world should be discussing deflation, not inflation.”
Telegraph states that while the plunge in world stock markets comes from the troubles of Europe, fears that the crisis may cripple the world’s fragile economies as they recovery from the U.S. financial crisis, were bolstered by recent economic data.
The European Commission produced “flash” data showing consumer confidence falling from a 23-month high of -15 in April to a seven-month low of -17.5 in May.
In the US there was a surprise 25,000 increase in jobless claims to 471,000 in the week ending May 15. The deterioration in the employment picture, coming hard on the heels of Wednesday’s drop in inflation, underlined worries that the US is exposed to a possible global double-dip recession.
Interestingly, the website reported that other countries that suffer high debt ratios may soon be exposed which could further escalate the crisis.
One rumour abounding on Thursday was that a major rating agency will soon have to downgrade Japan’s credit score, potentially bringing the world’s second-biggest economy into the spotlight.
If the latest rumor comes to fruition, the recent decline in stock prices could be just the beginning of another prolonged bear market that could trigger the world economies into a state of depression.
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by ilene - May 17th, 2010 3:21 am
“For want of a nail . . . the kingdom was lost.” Will Greece’s debt crisis lead to a Greek debt default and the collapse of the euro and an ensuing collapse of the 27-member European Union (or EU), and trigger the next round of crashes that will be described by economic historians decades from now as “the Great Depression II”? The assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria and his wife in Sarajevo, Serbia brought the tensions between Austria-Hungary and Serbia to a head. In turn, it is said this triggered a chain of international events that embroiled Russia and the major European powers; and World War I broke out in Europe. Will Greece’s debt crisis set a series of events in motion that sends the world into a downward economic spiral of unfathomable proportions?
For years, I have wrestled with the question of whether the Europe would collapse economically, politically, socially and militarily. Sounds absurd, you say? The countries are too interwoven and mutually dependent now for that to happen, and at the very least they will muddle along, making the worst of the best situations, and achieving the lowest common denominator? The United States of Europe, they are not and never will be, but they have achieved a degree of cohesiveness that I never thought was likely years ago.
I believed jealousies and rivalries and, yes, the hatreds of the past would linger barely beneath the surface, coming unglued at the most inopportune times when it really mattered the most. When the chips were down, I felt the EU would splinter and fall apart; and that its participants and the world would write it off as a noble experiment that failed, much like the League of Nations. After all, its successor—the United Nations—is considered to be a colossal joke by Americans, many of whom would love to see it shipped to Europe, and its building on the East River in Manhattan bulldozed and turned into a park, or made into co-ops or condominiums.
The bitter hatreds of the past seem to have subsided in Europe though, and it has become a cultural melting pot, more and more. Airbus was the first tangible sign of economic integration that I never thought would…