George Soros, the famed trader/philanthropist/muckraker, said during a speech in Berlin that the Euro currency and in fact the European Union (EU) may be in danger. He basically attributed Germany's economic tightening policy and unwillingness to bail out fellow European countries as a possible cause of a breakdown.
Soros is an interesting and polarizing character -- raised in Nazi-occupied Hungary, he then became one of the world's most famous and richest traders (known for "breaking the bank of England" in 1992), and in recent years has leaned to becoming a strange mix of libertarian/socialist/pacifist activist that has confronted many world leaders and governments. Many Americans don't like the very opinionated politically-oriented pronouncements that have come from Soros in recent years. But the complex nature of his beliefs can be seen by the fact that in the 1970s he garnered huge profits in a hedge fund with Jimmy Rogers, who is a vocal free market, limited government spending advocate.
This attack on German fiscal policies by Soros is a bit complicated, as is the entire worldwide Debt and Currency Crisis. But he basically seems to be saying that Germany should be increasing public spending in order to stabilize Europe and keep economies from slipping off the brink. And to some degree he may be correct in the short-term, as massive spending in America has helped to temper our recession (long-term effects are a different story).
However, by bringing in the concept of Euro/EU failure and saying "Democracy itself could be at risk", he basically is raising panic and fear -- and not in a responsible manner in my view. I would say he is doing this for political reasons, not personal trading/financial ones -- but he can shake world markets with talk like this.
Disclosure: No positions