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Everything posted by indirectapproach

  1. As a Greek would you know if there is any truth in Homburg's comment in this Der Spiegel article about Greek train drivers "netting" €5,000 per month? http://www.spiegel.de/international/europe/0,1518,735812,00.html
  2. "Seriously if the Dow was at 15,000, how is it going to decrease the massive unemployment, and get the larger economy going again?" I think it would depend upon whether the Dow at that level was the result of the largest corporations in the US earning big profits or inflation. If the former, those large corporations would eventually start buying stuff and hiring people and then so would everyone else who could afford to for fear of missing the boat if nothing else, to the benefit of the economy. If the latter, it wouldn't. Sluggish growth really should be enough for people to make good money in the US because the opportunities are huge because the US market is essentially cohesive and enormous. I think it helps to be an outsider to really appreciate this.
  3. "I think if you look on the Transparency International site, you will see that it is a 'perceptions index ..." And as such probably a useful guide if not a guarantee. Interestingly, Turkey is 56 in the list, which is quite a bit better than Italy at 67. And what can the TPI index tell us? Greece is one helluva mess, which is consistent with the OP, even if we all knew that already. That Greece is more of a mess than Roumania? Well that would be a surprise but since it appears that Roumanian national debt is only some 20% of GDP, whereas Greece's is >100% it may well be true. (Source: usual suspect.) This is again consistent with what the OP's anecdotal, albeit surprising and lends credence to that anecdotal, which is useful.
  4. Errr no, Romania is the 69th most corrupt nation and Greece is 78, tied with Columbia, Peru, Thailand, Lesotho, China and Serbia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corruption_Perceptions_Index
  5. This recent Chinese entry on the european scene is an interesting one. If the Chinese wanted to kick the crutch from under the Americans propping up europe might be one way to do it but if they did that, all the money they've loaned the US would not get paid back. It looks to me like they know as well as everyone how important it is to keep the plates spinning and are happy to lend a hand. It's probably a good idea to prevail upon the Chinese to hitch their interest to yours.
  6. The two tend to go hand in hand but are different. Like a cart and horse, often seen together but a cart is not a horse.
  7. "For example, in Finland income inequality has fallen, as has the price of consumer durables." Apparently not according to this, http://www.stat.fi/artikkelit/2005/art_2005-03-16_001.html An English translation of which would seem to be, "The long trend of growth in living standards paired with diminishing differences between social classes was dramatically reversed during the 1990s. For the first time in the history of Finland income differences have sharply grown. This change has been mostly driven by the growth of income from capital to the wealthiest segment of the population." Which is the final paragraph of the idiots guide article on the point, found at, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Economy_of_Finland
  8. Since printing is the only alternative to collapse, my bet is on printing and sooner rather than later. Ok, the Jermans don't want monkey money but since the great anglo saxon invention of the credit card, it's not as if they are gonna have to wheel it about in barrows.
  9. Pimco speaks, well their Bosomworth" does "Whether now or later, there is no way around a euro bond." (Last sentence of this article.) http://www.spiegel.de/international/business/0,1518,735657,00.html And the funny thing is Pimco is owned by Allianz SE, which is German, with its HQ at Munich.
  10. As for France, here's an interesting book from 2006, http://www.amazon.fr/jour-où-France-fait-faillite/dp/2246711215
  11. "In leiu of the above, the questions I want answers to are ...." I'm guessing here but I think the bankers stand to gain the most and the people stand to lose the most if the banks or the government's go bankrupt. If the banks and the governments go bust no one is gonna get paid, not even the bankers. If they go bust, we all go bust and while it may be a source of some solace that the bankers aren't getting paid either, I would have thought there were better ways of getting these guys for their breach of their fiduciary duties than bankrupting ourselves. The ratings agencies, as commercial entities, traded on the stock exchanges of New York and Paris (ho ho, I know that's a giggle, it's Fitch) and are probably funded by their clients ..... errr ..... who are probably bankers ...... who use the agencies to argue they didn't breach any fiduciary duty when they lost all the money. Connection .... ho ho This has a few hundred views on you tube, And unless I'm mistaken, this has more than 300 million views on you tube,
  12. Go on, give us some evidence to support that.
  13. http://dailybail.com/home/meredith-whitney-chris-christie-on-60-minutes-illinois-calif.html Anyone know if/where she says "who"?
  14. It seems that according to J K Galbraith, "trickle down," the theory, has been with us since the 1890's. It was known as "horse and sparrow theory," back then Despite that, it seems there is no empirical evidence that making the rich richer makes the poor richer. That figures on every instinctive level and it probably makes the poor poorer and Waddell Catchings and William Trufant Foster might well be said to agree with that in their analysis of the causes of the Great Depression. Certainly the rich are far too rich at the moment and hey presto ........ Great Recession! Obviously, I am not advocating some Stalinist culling of the kulaks but "trickle down" is bunk and no private individual should be a billionaire.
  15. "The other false assumption is that devaluation cures a country's international competitiveness problems." I don't think that's the point. I think the point is the Latins have been devaluing for a very long time and despite that things seemed to bumble along a bit better than they are looking now. And the Latins are not going to change centuries old, engrained behaviour patterns no matter how much the Jermans want them to or how much they think they want to themselves.
  16. Isn't the third option to just let the ECB print and devalue the euro by what .... 30% .... like err ..... we did? I mean you know, they must have printed all those €500 notes for a reason. Ambrose is behind the curve on this. There can be a debt union, fiscal union, whatever the hell kind of union anyone wants none of it deals with the structural imbalance of a soft money south and a hard money north. The easiest and best way to deal with this is for the north to let go their puritan hang ups, which are deeply flawed, false and hypocritical anyway, as I'm sure Ambrose has explained (yet again), and for the north to go all ciao bella, dolce vita, soft money and relaxed. The Hun signed themselves up for the duration, so they may as well get with the programme. It's all a giggle really. The Hun think they're the biggest kid on the block and they can boss everyone around. That's a mistake. They are bigger than anyone else, but not everyone else. Didn't someone say it would be illegal for Ireland to withdraw from the currency union? Isn't there a majority voting thing in place. Once the Hun stops paying, it will be the majority that chooses the tune and at that point, it will be the Hun that's dancing.
  17. "You're forgetting about all that Spanish silver ..." Which would have been hugely deflationary/devaluationist. If you import sheds of silver to chase the same amount of goods ..... hey presto ..... more Southern European devaluation.
  18. You could make 4% on that in the right location, location, location.
  19. "Something odd with those numbers," Funny figures from down South, Oi! Yoy! Yoy!
  20. Fiscal union will be as structurally flawed as currency union for as long as the Southern Europeans spend more than their Northern brethren can afford. Fiscal union won't fix anything because if a mob of Hun goose step into the European Finance Ministry Bureau in Rome and say, "Right you lot. You're all nicked for tea leavery," All the Eyeties will screech, "Godwin, Godwin, Godwin," And the Hun will have to go home. And since the Hun cannot prevail upon his little Southern buddies to behave, he can Anschluss his way out or maybe it's easier for him to just become Southern and just go with a Southern European deflationary gig. That's what Southern Europe's been doing since Diocletian, pretty much and let's face it, I bet Crete's more fun than Kiel. So it looks like Anschluss or monkey money to me.
  21. About 4% sounds about right to me with the market at this level. It's about what I'm getting on my gaff in London on the fairest valuation I can come up with for it. People who bought before prices went utterly mental will of course be doing better as a percentage of their real investment. As for the sense of holding such a poorly performing asset? Even if it's not as easy as it used to be to get out of UK real estate, it still sure is difficult to get back in. And what to do with the moolah on the liquidation of the asset? Spend a few weeks down the bookies?
  22. Well that is worth some serious thinking about. And I can certainly see that appealing to the French left. But I don't think those cashed Bavarians and Swabians, the ones that call the shots will put up with it. How about a new Anschlus, with the Netherlands tacked on this time and the bad euro debt deflated away against a resurgent Reischmark? OK, Jerman exporters won't like that but maybe (seriously "maybe") it's the course of least resistance. That also allows the Jerman to buy up the med at knock down prices, which is what they have wanted to do since Frederick Barbarossa.
  23. The short interest on Moody's would seem to agree with you, http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/quote?ticker=MCO:US Although the same cannot be said for Dun & Bradstreet, http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/quote?ticker=DNB:US As for Fitch, funnily they seem to be a subsidiary of the "French" group Fimalac, which means ..... well ....... whatever the fark you want it to .... http://www.fimalac.com/strategic-focus.html But almost certainly that a PE of c. 32 is only justified by the peculiar realities of the Paris Bourse, http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/quote?ticker=FIM:FP And quite why anyone would hold shares in Fimalac, in euros, just now, when Dun and Crapstreet gives you a P/E, in dollars, at half the level, with a manageable short interest, accountants that could theoretically be held accountable and some heft behind the capitalisation, is beyond me.
  24. The European political elite has an abysmal grasp of international money markets. They have done such a good job at convincing themselves, they cannot grasp how anyone would decline to buy their falsity just because their say so doesn't make it true.
  25. So what's the point? Do we have a buying opportunity in Tehran real estate? Is it Caspian beachfront?
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