In a move considered aggressive by US and European officials, Russia has sent at least 12 warships to patrol waters near its naval base in Tartous, Syria.
The deployment appears to be a warning to Israeli and Western officials against military intervention in Syria’s bloody civil war, which has now claimed the lives of over 80,000 people.
Russia’s increased presence in the region — which began raising eyebrows in the US three [...]
European officials are openly admitting that the two largest banks in Cyprus are “insolvent“, and it is now being reported that Cyprus Popular Bank only has “enough liquidity to cover the next few hours“. Of course all banks in Cyprus are officially closed until Tuesday at the earliest, but there have been long lines at ATMs all over Cyprus as people scramble to get whatever money they can out [...]
March 18, 2013
Cyprus will put forward a new proposal on Monday under which a tax-free threshold or a lower tax rate for smaller depositors could be introduced, media reports said on Monday, in a move aimed at easing the pain of a bailout agreement which will impose an unprecedented tax on savers.
Reuters cited a government source in Cyprus as saying that the country is mulling a tax-free threshold on the [...]
Having stressed publicly that Greece was an exception and that no other rescue would impose losses on senior private creditors, European officials embarked this weekend on a controversial path for Cyprus. They did so for understandable reasons, which they will argue are unique. Yet the specifics of the rescue will bring implementation challenges that will undermine its effectiveness and may lead to negative side-effects. Read more
Britain, Germany and the Netherlands urged their citizens to immediately leave the eastern Libyan city of Benghazi on Thursday in response to what they called an imminent threat against Westerners.
European officials told The Associated Press that schools were among the potential targets.
The warnings came a day after U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton testified to Congress about the Sept. 11 attack on the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi that [...]
November 26, 2012
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and European officials seized 132 websites on Monday for allegedly selling counterfeit merchandise in a coordinated crackdown timed to coincide with the holiday shopping season.
It is the third straight year that the government has seized websites on “Cyber Monday” — the marketing term for the Monday after Thanksgiving, when many online retailers offer steep discounts and promotions.
ICE’s Homeland Security Investigations unit [...]
Despite a courageous public stance by the International Monetary Fund, European officials failed again on Tuesday to deal with the critical issue of Greece’s debt sustainability. If this continues, they will undermine yet another bailout package for Greece and suffer further erosion in credibility, especially in the eyes of their own citizens. They also risk seeing another hard-fought cash infusion do little more than buy a few months for [...]
For those to whom this comes as a surprise, following the periodic jaunts of Tim Geithner to Europe explaining just what is truly important in life, not to mention Obama’s daily phone calls to Mario Monti, we feel truly sorry:
EU-IMF REVIEW OF GREEK DEBT SITUATION SET TO BE DELAYED UNTIL AFTER U.S. ELECTION – EUROPEAN OFFICIALS
And the punchline:
“Obama doesn’t want anything on a macroeconomic scale that is going to rock [...]
The sharp increase in oil prices following the European Union’s oil ban against Iran (July 1) has cost the 27-member bloc nearly $7bln in the past two months.
While the average oil price stood at $95 in June (one month before the EU sanctions were put into effect), the figure increased to $102.5 and $107.5 in the two months after the implementation of the embargos.
The European officials have put the total [...]
Greece may run out of money and go bankrupt by Aug 20, a British government analysis of the ongoing eurozone crisis has warned.
The beleaguered country will have to refinance billions of euros worth of government bonds in less than a month and requires international assistance — which may not be forthcoming — to repay the money.
International inspectors arrived back in Greece on Tuesday to assess the country’s austerity programme with [...]
Where have we seen this before? Bond yields soar above the 7 percent danger level. Check. The stock market crashes to new lows. Check. Industrial activity plummets like a rock and the economy contracts. Check. The unemployment rate skyrockets to more than 20 percent. Check. The bursting of a massive real estate bubble pushes the banking system to the brink of implosion. Check. Broke local governments beg the broke [...]
Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy announced tax increases and spending cuts totaling 65 billion euros ($80 billion), risking a deepening recession to keep the euro financial crisis at bay.
Rajoy’s fourth austerity package in seven months will raise the sales levy to 21 percent from 18 percent; scrap a tax rebate for home buyers; scale back unemployment benefits and study pension cuts; consolidate local governments and eliminate the year-end bonus for public workers. The budget [...]
Germany on Tuesday offered a cool response to a roadmap released by European Union President Herman Van Rompuy and other European officials outlining a path to tighter fiscal integration and a banking union. German Deputy Foreign Minister Michael Link, speaking to reporters in Luxembourg, said the proposals tilt “toward various models for mutualizing debt” but “come up short” in terms of improved budgetary controls, Bloomberg reported.
Read more: http://www.marketwatch.com/story/germany-cool-to-eu-fiscal-union-plan-report-2012-06-26?link=MW_home_latest_news
STOCKHOLM (AP) — A Norwegian man has received terrorist training from al-Qaida’s offshoot in Yemen and is awaiting orders to carry out an attack on the West, officials from three European security agencies told The Associated Press on Monday.
Western intelligence officials have long feared such a scenario – a convert to Islam who is trained in terrorist methods and can blend in easily in Europe and the United States, traveling [...]
Marc Chandler, Marc to Market
In the five sessions through Tuesday, the Greek stock market has rallied 25%. Equity traders seems to anticipate the election outcome. A new government is not yet in place, but many are still confident it will be announced in the very near-term. At the same time, European officials seem to be much more supportive then they were prior to the vote. They seem more willing to modify the Greece’s program [...]
Citi’s economics team led Willem Buiter and Michael Saunders made some noise late last week when they wrote that Greece would exit the euro on January 1, 2013.
Despite the results of this weekend’s Greek elections, which favors bailouts, austerity, and the euro, Citi continues to believe Greece is likely to exit the euro.
Here’s a clip from the published by Citi’s Jurgen Michels:
Initial reactions from European officials welcome the outcome of the election, but made very clear [...]
Senior European officials last night issued a grave warning that the very survival of the euro is at risk as the crisis in Spain threatens to tear the region apart.
Politicians and central bankers said the situation in the eurozone was unsustainable and drastic action was needed to prevent the ‘disintegration’ of the single currency.
They spoke out as European leaders scrambled to stop the financial crisis in Spain spiralling out of [...]
Newedge Leaves Greek Stock Market, Will Only Execute Sell Orders
Either the game of chicken in Europe has just hit and surpassed ludicrous speed, or French banks SocGen and Credit Agricole, both of which have some of the worst CT1/TA ratios in the known universe, and which are the JV participants of Newedge, have decided to formally pull the plug on Greece. As the FT reported moments ago, Newedge “has told clients that it will [...]
As Greece burns, European officials fiddle and Asia braces for another global crisis, my thoughts are on Thailand.
This summer marks the 15th anniversary of the baht devaluation that ignited one of history’s worst meltdowns. Thailand’s plunge ricocheted from Indonesia to South Korea to Malaysia before heading west. The pain went global with the Dow Jones Industrial Average plunging more than 500 points in a single trading day, hedge funds blowing up and giant bailouts becoming a [...]
Pacific Investment Management Co., which manages the world’s largest bond fund, doesn’t see the European currency union surviving in its present form.
“The status quo is no longer an option for Europe over the three to five year horizon,” Pimco Chief Executive Officer Mohamed El-Erian wrote in a report outlining the Newport Beach, California-based company’s medium-term economic outlook.
The most probable outcome is that the 17-nation euro area will evolve into a smaller union centered [...]
Responsibility for the mess, many of those involved in the effort say, lies with a Greek political class that couldn’t or wouldn’t reform the country, an unrealistic program that assumed a quick economic recovery despite draconian austerity and crushing debts, and growing mistrust between Greece and its creditors.
“It was almost a mission impossible,” says George Papandreou, the luckless Greek premier who negotiated the original bailout and then was forced [...]
Various austerity programs have been a disaster for the European recovery, shrinking the economy, reducing government revenues and tipping precarious borrowers from performing to nonperforming. If Europe’s banks collapse, U.S. banks will — at best — take a hard body blow from their exposure:
LONDON–European banks are bracing for a wave of ratings downgrades in coming weeks that could intensify pressure on the fragile industry and further undercut recent efforts to [...]
By David Callaway, MarketWatch
SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) — At some point, the world’s major central banks are going to turn off the three-year spigot of free money supporting much of the world’s economic and market gains these days.
Just not right before a key Greek debt swap on Thursday that could ignite the European crisis all over again.
The Federal Reserve’s signal on Wednesday that it is considering buying more [...]
The New York Times
Dow expanded its presence in the region by allocating 10 million euros, or about $13.2 million, for a new water-desalination research center on Spain’s eastern seaboard, about 50 miles southwest of Barcelona. There a staff of engineers hopes to develop new ways to produce cheap, clean water.
While not as big an investment as some of Dow’s others in Europe, it showed that even in a troubled economy like [...]
February 24, 2012
The European Union has filed a laundry list of complaints against Chinese dumping, from shoes to fasteners. Ceramics, for example. Household ceramics got hit last week. In 2011, it was building ceramics. In 2010, it was ceramic tiles, which led to a punitive tax of 69.7%—punitive for consumers who ended up having to pay higher prices, though it was a nice gift to European producers. Now, it [...]
February 23, 2012
U.S. and European officials are downplaying allegations that Iran and al Qaeda have recently stepped up cooperation in preparation for possible attacks on U.S. and other Western targets.
The officials, who are familiar with security issues, and private experts, discounted recent news reports about a possible new deal between Iran and what remains of al Qaeda’s core leadership, now headed by Ayman al Zawahiri, long-time deputy to the late [...]
“European officials attempting to fend off the euro area’s first sovereign default will try to settle remaining disputes today as they close in on a 130 billion-euro ($170 billion) Greek bailout. Finance ministers meet in Brussels at 3:30 p.m., joining Greece’s prime minister, Lucas Papademos, who arrived on the eve of the gathering. Their talks on his country’s second bailout in two years will aim to reconcile demands made on [...]
While these pages have been warning for about a month that a Greek default is precisely what Europe wants, a self-deluded market has been ignoring this reality. That is no longer the case as the default (pardon the pun) thought is now one of Greek default. As for the assumption that “it is all priced in”… that too is being scrapped as revisionist histories of Lehman come to mind. As [...]