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  • Greece threatens to sue Europe [View news story]
    Some of it is moralistic BS but there's a lot that's accurate.
    Jun 30, 2015. 08:54 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Greece threatens to sue Europe [View news story]
    Sorry you are indeed correct, and I agree with the entirety of your comment.
    Jun 30, 2015. 08:51 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Greece set to default on IMF loan [View news story]
    Lots of observers have consistently assumed that Tsipras is engaged in some devious Machiavellian plot and Varoufakis is a master of Game Theory who is playing a high stakes game of bluff.

    And yet, at every juncture, both have done exactly what they've claimed they would, fought for exactly what they stated, and completely adhered to every principle they've vocally claimed important to them.

    And still, Tsipras as some kind of evil genius mastermind emerges in observer perspectives... it's very amusing to me.
    Jun 30, 2015. 08:47 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Greece threatens to sue Europe [View news story]
    If Greece leaves the Euro and the related oversight before it implements the structural reform necessary to make its economy modern and competitive, it will relapse into the corruption and graft of its pre-EU days. Since that was barely 15 years ago, and still in living memory, the Greek population is scared sh*tless of that outcome.

    So there is a lot of desire to remain in the EU. But there comes a point when corruption and graft appear more palatable than starvation.
    Jun 30, 2015. 06:41 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Greece threatens to sue Europe [View news story]
    Greece is borrowing from the Troika to pay the Troika, FYI.

    The only reason pensions are important is because that's the last functioning piece of the economy. Troika austerity has created a massive contraction of GDP and economic activity (more severe than the US' Great Depression) and resulted in over 25% unemployment.

    And yes, the debt can't be paid, especially not until the economy starts to grow again.
    Jun 30, 2015. 06:38 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Greece threatens to sue Europe [View news story]
    Um... all though I admire the tenor of your comment I should point out that the June 25th agreement being voted on in referendum has been published in its entirety in many places.

    But otherwise, yes, a significant portion of the Greek debt to the ECB is an accounting fiction erasable with a computer entry...

    There's an interesting article that expounds that here:
    Jun 30, 2015. 06:36 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Greece threatens to sue Europe [View news story]
    The insignificant size of the Greek problem vis a vis European GDP in whole could have been dealt with easily. This appears to be Varoufakis' overall notion. What Varoufakis never counted on was that the intransigence of the Eurogroup and the electorates they were beholden to would allow Greece to delineate the means by which Euro exit can be effected.

    The sheer idiocy of this - an easily resolvable issue leading to the death of Euro irrevocability - is astounding. The programs proposed by Syriza were highly centrist and reasonable - revolving primarily around reductions in primary surplus and growth linked debt restructure.

    It can hardly be argued that Varoufakis played "games" as the actions taken by the Syriza admin haven't been unreasonable. The attitude and approach may have been amateurish, and may have led to Eurogroup intransigence, but to allow that intransigence to permanently harm the Common Area in the manner we are watching is idiotic.
    Jun 30, 2015. 06:27 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Greece threatens to sue Europe [View news story]
    Hi Taxman100, I disagree with your comment. The breadth and depth of the Greek depression has eclipsed the US's Great Depression and many believe that Greece cannot, simply mathematically, fall that much more.

    Interesting short note here with data, charts, and analysis via twitter:
    Jun 30, 2015. 06:12 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Greece threatens to sue Europe [View news story]
    Sevenseas, the mood in Athens seems to be leaning "yes" and everywhere else "no". In particular the islands appear to be unanimous in their rejection of the hotel VAT increases. It's likely why a modified proposal circulated by the Eurogroup backtracked on that. Athens has a significant part of the population so I don't think there is any guarantee on which way this swings, but....

    Many hardcore ND and centrist are highly offended by the tone and tenor taken by Eurogroup and intend to vote "no" even though they don't support Syriza. As in, the vote isn't going to occur along party lines, not even close.

    I see a very strong chance of a "no" vote and a high likelihood Tsipras remains in office regardless of the outcome. The oligarch controlled TV is on a massive campaign of disinformation and FUD-mongering but the June 25th proposal is circulating and is universally despised.
    Jun 30, 2015. 06:08 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Greece set to default on IMF loan [View news story]

    The "question" leaked all over the internet is approximately "Do you accept the reform proposals as delivered by the Eurogroup on June 25?"

    And its interesting in that

    1) that proposal has supposedly been rescinded and is no longer on the table
    2) a modified proposal has been leaked
    3) other modified proposals are supposedly being offered to Tsipras if he backtracks on the referendum...
    Jun 30, 2015. 05:56 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Greece threatens to sue Europe [View news story]
    SDNS - you must have me confused with someone else, I am not from Naxos or a native Greek, but I do have extended family there and real estate investments in the country. I have lived there and have closely watched the economy since the mid 90s, before its entry into the EZ.

    The crisis doesn't affect me directly outside the value of my assets or returns - which isn't bothering me as I'm looking to expand right now with prices hitting some insane lows. But it affects my extended family pretty significantly, especially those in heavy industry who rely on exports to make a living.
    Jun 29, 2015. 09:00 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Greece threatens to sue Europe [View news story]
    Right now the primary strategy is regime change on the part of the creditors and the Greek oligarchs.

    I realize that Putin is the Great Big Boogy Man that Europe and the USA fear is hiding under their beds, but a Russian bailout is pretty far-fetched.

    In any event it's a significant part of the Syriza strategy to avoid taking on more debt, and to seek a credible, realistic, growth oriented restructure.
    Jun 29, 2015. 08:04 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Greece threatens to sue Europe [View news story]

    "But...I've never seen anyone address the question, what if Greece don't play ball AND refuses to leave AND pursues her rights under the treaty."

    It's an interesting question is it not?

    What if Greece retaliates against non-cooperative Eurogroup partners by vetoing every piece of EU politics? EU motions require unanimity. Greece could scuttle pretty much everything.

    One wonders what position Greece takes for example, next time Russia or Iran sanction extensions come up for review.

    No one is talking about it, but, I believe, some clarity can be obtained from Mr. Varoufakis recent experience with the Eurogroup. I dislike block quoting large amounts of text but in this instance it is interesting:

    "Following my intervention the Eurogroup President rejected our request for an extension, with the support of the rest of the members, and announced that the Eurogroup would be issuing a statement placing the burden of this impasse on Greece and suggesting that the 18 ministers (that is the 19 Eurozone finance ministers except the Greek minister) reconvene later to discuss ways and means of protecting themselves from the fallout.

    At that point I asked for legal advice, from the secretariat, on whether a Eurogroup statement can be issued without the conventional unanimity and whether the President of the Eurogroup can convene a meeting without inviting the finance minister of a Eurozone member-state. I received the following extraordinary answer: “The Eurogroup is an informal group. Thus it is not bound by Treaties or written regulations. While unanimity is conventionally adhered to, the Eurogroup President is not bound to explicit rules.”

    The rules have been rewritten, reinterpreted, and adjusted at will during the length and breadth of the Greek crisis. Most recently when the ECB declared an end to Greece's ELA forcing a liquidity - not a solvency- crisis by encouraging a run on its banks. Having already initiated an effort to push Greece out of the EZ, can it possibly be believed that the same will not happen to its position in the EU? And thereafter, to any other country which isn't wholly on board with the center's policy agenda?

    I find this fascinating.
    Jun 29, 2015. 07:45 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Rough session for oil as equities dive [View news story]
    The backdrop of failing Iran talks is interesting, but China is likely more relevant, as it accounts for the vast majority of global demand growth.
    Jun 29, 2015. 07:13 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • WSJ: Greece won't pay IMF tranche due tomorrow [View news story]
    Bjorkman, I enjoyed reading your comments in this news current. I suggest reading this article from Bloomberg:

    I don't agree with many of the points made but there are some interesting opinions expressed that follow your line of thinking.

    I'll also point out that Greece isn't in position to become an exporter or heavy industry nation in its current regulatory paradigm. It needs reform - reform that isn't coming under the current Troika led programs. It needs a ground up rebuild of its regulatory environment akin to many LatAm emerging market economies. Yep, I said "emerging".
    Jun 29, 2015. 07:00 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment