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  • Markets pull back from worst levels as Greek finance minister resigns [View news story]
    Sorry alterami but your comment is absolutely assinine.

    Seriously? 'Banks can never ever be blamed even when they themselves admit it'?

    Because blaming banks is a 'left-wing' position??

    Thanks for the amusement!

    PS: Economics 101: home finances are not sovereign nation finances. Not even close. If you are trying to compare your credit card to the running and financing of a country, you are really out of your depth.
    Jul 6, 2015. 06:59 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Greece gets a new finance minister [View news story]
    "The EU was rather EUfanatic to support an unsupportive Greece for so long, still reaching out for an agreement after months of incompency, insults and negotiation tricks."

    The backwards looking conversation is all wrong. Greeks took on the burden of saving Eurozone banks for the last 5 years and now that everything is in good shape Greece is being blamed for taking the money that saved the Eurozone's banks and allowed the Eurogroup the time to develop the mechanisms that will keep a default from harming the rest of the system....

    The only way to move the conversation forward is when everyone stops looking backward...

    Greeks don't want 30 years of debt slavery any more than Germans want to provide more money to Greece. Greece needs to grow its way out of its debt to gdp burden, and Germany needs to stop forcing the wrong types of austerity policies on Greece.
    Jul 6, 2015. 06:52 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Greece gets a new finance minister [View news story]
    Because you could not... cheers!
    Jul 6, 2015. 06:11 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Markets pull back from worst levels as Greek finance minister resigns [View news story]
    Greece backstopped European banks in solidarity to the Eurozone project, only to get treated like garbage now that it is no longer needed.

    Good post on how things went down, starting with 2010:

    "The 2010 assistance program was widely understood at the time to be motivated by the need to prevent disruptive write downs at non-Greek banks. The Guardian reported in February 2010 that France and Switzerland had exposures to Greece of €55B each ($119B @ 1.4266 $/€), and Germany €30B ($43B @ 1.4266 $/€), based on BIS data....

    [W]hy are [Eurozone finance ministers] supporting these financial assistance programmes? Because, if they are not implemented, the non-payment of debt — including bank debt — by the nations on the periphery would lead to severe banking crises and a return to recession in the core of the eurozone."

    Former Bundesbank head Karl Otto Pöhl, just after the 2010 program for Greece was approved:

    Pöhl: …a small, indeed a tiny, country like Greece, one with no industrial base, would never be in a position to pay back €300 billion worth of debt.

    SPIEGEL: According to the rescue plan, it’s actually €350 billion …

    Pöhl: … which that country has even less chance of paying back. Without a “haircut,” a partial debt waiver, it cannot and will not ever happen. So why not immediately? That would have been one alternative. The European Union should have declared half a year ago — or even earlier — that Greek debt needed restructuring.

    SPIEGEL: But according to Chancellor Angela Merkel, that would have led to a domino effect, with repercussions for other European states facing debt crises of their own.

    Pöhl: I do not believe that. I think it was about something altogether different… It was about protecting German banks, but especially the French banks, from debt write offs. On the day that the rescue package was agreed on, shares of French banks rose by up to 24 percent. Looking at that, you can see what this was really about — namely, rescuing the banks and the rich Greeks.
    Jul 6, 2015. 06:07 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • ECB maintains emergency loan cap [View news story]
    The 'overspending' is the structural deficit of the transfers of Greek earnings to their more competitive European neighbors.

    Greek public sector employment dropped over 25% from 2009 to 2014.
    Greece's fiscal deficit dropped from 15.6% of GDP to 2.5% in 2014 - unmatched anywhere.
    Greece retirement from one of lowest ages to one of highest in Europe post reforms, for one of the largest adjustments in Europe.

    et cetera, et cetera, et cetera....

    Where do people get their information from these days on Greece, comic books?
    Jul 6, 2015. 05:53 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Iran to double oil exports if sanctions lifted [View news story]
    The Saudis see the end of the Era of Oil literally on the horizon (the date keeps getting pulled back, it used to be 2050, then 2030... now as soon as the early 2020s if they allow unconventional oil to proliferate). That's what's driving them and they've said as much.

    The issue is demand growth versus supply growth in a world which has experienced oil as overpriced for almost a decade - overpriced on a btu basis versus its alternatives. Natural gas' explosion after 2008 has had a massive impact on global energy, as has the dramatic reduction in cost for renewables, and renewables' emergence as energy security policy has also also changed the landscape.

    US shale displaced a lot of oil supply, and Saudis didn't want to be its next victim. With demand growth soft in China and oil still expensive on a btu basis, it makes nothing but sense for SA to produce to capacity at what is likely going to be a decreasing price environment moving forward...
    Jul 6, 2015. 05:47 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Greece gets a new finance minister [View news story]
    Great headfake there, completely avoiding my question!

    But I'll respond anyway.... cause I'm just awesome that way.

    First, the programs in effect leading into December 2014 were not the ones that led to the election of the Syriza government. It was the new programs the Samaras government was getting ready to implement, under a new bailout, for more bailout cash (over 7b) that led to Syriza being elected.


    "Pre-Syriza growth" would return Greek GDP to its 1975-1999 trend… never.

    "Pre-Syriza growth" was at a pace that would not return Greek real GDP to the 2007 level of the 1975-1999 trend (if you think that was Greece's "real" potential output in 2007) until... 2023...

    And “pre-Syriza growth” would reduce Greek unemployment from its current levels… never...

    Syriza's proposals to the Eurogroup were not initially about debt relief at ALL, it was never mentioned. Even in the later meetings, after things had taken a turn for the worse economically and debt became an issue, it was mostly about restructuring durations and rates, to enable the economy to grow at a faster pace. The OECD also noted the output gap is Greece is over 10%... free growth.... provided the right policies were taken.
    Jul 6, 2015. 05:23 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Greece gets a new finance minister [View news story]
    Please provide details on precisely how much of the bailout funds went into Greek pockets, versus how much went to pay the creditors providing the funds, thanks!
    Jul 6, 2015. 04:20 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • ECB maintains emergency loan cap [View news story]
    The Greeks rejected a poorly designed reform plan that would keep the economy from growing for over 20 years.

    The Greeks tightened their belts to the tune of over 25% GDP reduction, and have tightened far more than any other country in the world, period, since 2008.

    6 years of contraction, 2 bailouts, a private sector haircut, and looking at no option other than a 3rd and fourth bailout by continuing the failed programs they were subjected to and abided by. Can you blame them?
    Jul 6, 2015. 04:18 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Greek tensions weigh on markets; Varoufakis resigns [View news story]
    The vast majority of those who agree the troika programs have failed are non-Greek.... and include the IMF itself.... You have yet to make a comment Touchwood that adds to the conversation or has any real bearing in reality.

    I do so enjoy your comments though, keep them rolling!
    Jul 6, 2015. 01:05 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Greek tensions weigh on markets; Varoufakis resigns [View news story]
    Good idea, that's pretty much what everyone except Germany and the EG are saying....
    Jul 6, 2015. 11:19 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Greek tensions weigh on markets; Varoufakis resigns [View news story]
    In every economic scenario proposed by any credible economist anywhere, it is austerity that leads to starvation, and not the rejection of a misguided austerity regime. The comments here are hilarious in their ignorance. But do go on, I am amused.
    Jul 6, 2015. 11:18 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Greek tensions weigh on markets; Varoufakis resigns [View news story]
    Just to be clear Tsipras offered to rescind the referendum several times.

    It was Merkel and Djoesselboem who thought it would be a good idea, expecting sanctions... ahem, liquidity... drying up, to force....ahem... persuade... the Greeks to kneel before their power.

    Djoesselboem and Merkel need to be looked at by their electorates for their incompetence. Schauble should as well, as he has successfully, as per the most recent IMF releases, created a Greece that can never pay back its debts under the dictums of his misguided austerity, and will permanently lose the German taxpayer's money.
    Jul 6, 2015. 11:13 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Stocks set for ugly Monday open as Greece rejects austerity [View news story]
    To provide something useful to this conversation instead of the tired old meaningless diatribes, the issue with ELA is critical for the EZ. A continuation of the ELA cessation in light of the Greek government's obvious and visible efforts to obtain a deal is effectively the ECB going rogue: a central bank refusing to provide liquidity to its members.

    This would be a highly political and outside the rules case, which would clearly show potential Eurozone applicants that the EZ is not what it claims to be and no more than a hard currency peg.

    There are, as we know, many countries who have effectively use hard currency pegs, but none without a central bank to back them up.
    Jul 6, 2015. 11:02 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Varoufakis promises to quit if Greeks vote for austerity [View news story]
    "Exemption was lifted because Greece was not deemed to be in a programme"

    Not at all, it was lifted based on: " "It is currently not possible to assume a successful conclusion" of Greece’s current bailout. "

    After 1, just 1, meeting with Varoufakis. Not rules based at all, regardless of claims.

    Greece was indeed in the program at the time and continued to make all debt payments as scheduled for months after.

    What is true, however, is that the waiver was unique to Greece because of the ratings on its collateral, and that the ECB had issued the waiver of its own design, and that it was entitled to remove the waiver at its own discretion. But it's also true that the waiver was rescinded due to the Syriza governments intentions of renegotiating the program, and not based on any rules at all whatsoever, and designed to put pressure on the Syriza administration.
    Jul 5, 2015. 05:52 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment