Populaire berichten

woensdag 29 april 2015

Greek bank deposits fall to ten-year low

- Grieken hebben hun geld nu grotendeels wel veiliggesteld , daar mogen ze de ECB voor bedanken. Dus naast de overheidsschulden , zijn de bankrisico's nu ook overgeheveld naar de Europese belastingbetaler. Griekenland is nu eindelijk klaar om op onze kosten failliet te gaan. Fijn dat wij de verantwoordelijkheid mogen dragen voor de keuzes die zij hebben gemaakt. Dit allemaal door onze politici die graag ons geldrondstrooien onder het excuus om de boel bij elkaar te houden. Dat mag best wat kosten natuurlijk. 

There has been no respite for Greek banks.
Money continued to flow out of the cash-strapped nation's banking system in March, as depositors took flight amid continued wrangling between Athens and its eurozone creditors over the terms of a bailout as Greece teeters on the edge of running out of cash.
Deposits in the Greek banking system fell to their lowest since May 2005 last month, according to European Central Bank data, slipping to €145bn, from €147.5bn in February.
That fall of €2.5 billion compares with much larger outflows in the previous three months, however (see chart) suggesting that wealthy Greek savers and large companies able to move money abroad have mostly done so.
Finance ministers of the European countries that have been propping Greece up since the eurozone crisis are refusing to unlock previously agreed bailout funds until radical Greek prime minister Alexis Tsipras restarts austerity measures that have proven severely unpopular with domestic voters.
But the European Central Bank also makes last-ditch funds available to Greek lenders under its ELA - emergency liquidity assistance - programme.
It is currently unclear whether a Greek default on a €200m payment that is due to the International Monetary Fund on May 1 would trigger a cancellation of the ELA. Bloomberg is reporting, in fact, that the ECB's governing council has recently lifted the cap on the maximum it can offer under the ELA by €1.4bn to €76.9bn.

maandag 27 april 2015

3 Tough Choices for ECB on Greece

Een bericht over het verhaal hoe de ECB de europese belastingbetaler steeds meer in de problemen brengt om het simpele feit dat ze het politiek niet haalbaar vinden om de stekker eruit te trekken. Dit ondanks dat ze al heel lang weten dat dat financieel het beste is. 
Maar ja, het is niet hun eigen geld waar ze over beslissen en dan is het makkelijk om je beslissingen te rechtvaardigen onder het mom van verschillende politieke redenen (lees gekonkel) die dan belangrijker zouden zijn dan het geld wat verloren wordt. 

Griekenland is maar 2% van de Europese economie en het aankomende faillissement zal wat dat betreft weinig gevolgen hebben. Ook het financiele systeem zal er geen last van hebben, die hebben een Grieks faillissement al een paar jaar geleden voor de kiezen gehad en verwerkt. (banken die 70% verlies hebben moeten nemen op hun Griekse Staatsobligaties)

Vraag is wat dit met het vertrouwen van de Europese belastingbetaler gaat doen als ze erachter gaan komen hoeveel geld dit grapje gekost heeft. Dat naast alle bezuinigen die ze al hebben moeten doen en nog moeten doen, pensioenen die versobert moeten worden, een versoberde verzorgingsstaat etc etc, ze ook nog eens extra belast gaan worden door dit faillissement. 

Zal het gebrek aan lef van onze politici die in hun beleving zo hard bezig zijn om de EU te redden door Griekenland maar te blijven accommoderen er juist voor zorgen dat dit het vertrouwen in de EU ondermijnt wordt bij europese belastingbetalers ?

As another meeting of euro area finance ministers ended in acrimonyFriday, the focus this week will turn to the resumption of -- it is to be hoped -- more constructive technical discussions between Greece and its European partners. Yet the most potentially decisive discussions will be taking place in a different venue: Decision makers at the European Central Bank’s will hold their weekly consideration of how much “emergency liquidity” they should extend to Greek banks and on what terms.
At its weekly meeting, on April 29, the ECB will be under tremendous pressure to keep Greece on its life support system. But without progress elsewhere, this powerful monetary institution is at risk of joining other actors in the Greek drama that are unintentionally transitioning from being a major part of the solution to a big part of the problem now and in the future. This risk is symptomatic of  the much larger dysfunctions undermining a comprehensive and sustainable outlook for Greece within the euro zone.
The ECB decision will involve some variant of three basic alternatives:
1. Pretend and extend. The ECB, through the Emergency Liquidity Assistance operated by its network of national central banks, would continue to extend exceptional funding to Greece. This would be done under the pretense that it is helping Greece deal with a liquidity problem instead of acknowledging the country's true predicament, deep economic and solvency deficiencies. This approach has the advantage of keeping options open in the hope that Greece and its creditors will finally break through to decisive policy and financial solutions. The downside is that it would increase the ECB's financial exposure to a problem case that, at least so far, has shown little chance of resolving itself in an orderly fashion. It would also raise concerns about burden-sharing as the ECB would act even as other creditors, not only from the private sector but also public institutions such as the International Monetary Fund, are scheduled to get repaid.
2. Pull the plug. Under this scenario, the ECB would be forthright. It would limit any further financing to Greece, raising not only the legitimate burden-sharing issues but also rightly noting that liquidity support would continue to prove ineffective without accompanying measures to improve growth and financial solvency. It would make further assistance conditional both on policy progress and new money to Greece from other sources, along with debt reduction. If such conditions failed to be met, the ECB decision would likely lead to even greater capital and deposit flight from Greece. And this, under most realistic scenarios, would prompt the Greek government to impose capital controls, default on payments and take even more draconian steps to gain control of any idle cash balances in the country. All of these developments would increase the risk of Greece exiting the euro zone.
3. Pull the plug as part of a comprehensive Plan B. In this case, the ECB’s refusal to extend additional liquidity support would be part of an attempt (albeit a risky one) at an orderly pivot for both the euro zone and Greece. The ECB would seek to minimize the risk of Greekcontagion and disorderly spillovers to other economies (such as Cyprus, Italy, Portugal and Spain) by expanding its funding windows for both governments and financial institutions. It would also step upits large-scale program of security purchases (known as quantitative easing). Meanwhile, work would proceed on some sort of interim European arrangement for Greece, including the possibility of an association agreement with the European Union or, even, remaining in the EU but outside the euro zone, like the U.K. 
One of the big lessons of the last few years is that, regardless of the facts on the ground, no one -- whether on the Greek side or among its official national, regional and international creditors -- wishes to go down in history as the cause of the first exit from the single currency. For that reason, the ECB would most likely opt again for the first option -- extending the ELA and pretending that a durable solution is around the corner -- and it would hope that its involvement wouldn't be overwhelmed by funding demands caused by accelerated deposit flight from Greek banks.
All this speaks to what is perhaps the greatest tragedy of all. For several years, very few people -- whether in Greece, among its European partners or in the ECB, EU and IMF -- have stepped up to the challenge of a lifetime: that of either taking decisive breakthrough policy actions or properly pressing the reset button. Instead, the decision has been to engage in a collective muddle-through, hoping some perfect -- indeed, immaculate -- solution would appear down the road.
 Such a solution is hard to come by. And the wait for one is far from cost-free.
Millions of Greeks, including an alarming portion of the country's youth, have become mired in devastating unemployment and spreading poverty. And with hundreds of millions of euros of debt obligations having been transferred from the private sector to European taxpayers, the would-be solvers of this Greek tragedy have become a growing part of the problem.

vrijdag 24 april 2015

Greece Could Default Without Exiting Euro

Ik begrijp al jaren niet waarom men het heeft over het verlaten van de eurozone van Griekenland. De media koppelt al die tijd al een faillissement aan een terugkeer naar de eigen munt. Maar daar is helemaal geen reden voor, het een heeft niks met het ander te maken. Geeft maar weer eens aan hoe misleidend de media is door hun onwetendheid. Ze doen ook geen poging om zelf hun huiswerk te doen. Elkaar napraten is veel makkelijker.

De ECB blijft trouwens maar noodkredieten verstrekken aan Griekse banken, wat ons natuurlijk ook geld gaat kost. Bovenop de rest. Maar de ECB wil niet de oorzaak zijn van een faillissement (in hun ogen) en dus blijven ze maar steunen tegen beter weten in, gewoon omdat ze de ballen niet hebben om een echte beslissingen te nemen die het beste is voor alle partijen. Het is hetzelfde als tijdens de ICE-Save zaak en DNB. Toen wilde Wellink de Nederlandse spaarder niet waarschuwen en beschermen omdat hij niet verantwoordelijk wilde zijn voor het faillissement van die bank en dus vele miljarden Nederlands spaargeld later gebeurde het alsnog. Fijn he, zulke toezichthouders.

A Greek default doesn’t mean the country has to leave the euro area, economists say.The chances of Greece missing some of its debt payments in the coming weeks are 40 percent, while the probability of an exit from the 19-nation currency bloc stands at 30 percent, according to median estimates in a Bloomberg survey of 29 economists. Almost four in five respondents said a default won’t trigger an exit.
“Although the likelihood of default and Grexit has certainly risen considerably over the past few weeks in both cases, it is wrong to think that one necessarily will follow the other,” said Danae Kyriakopoulou, senior economist at the Center for Economics and Business Research in London. “If liquidity can be maintained even in the case of default then this means that Grexit will not follow default.”
Time for Greece is running out as Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras remains at loggerheads with his country’s creditors over reforms needed to unlock funds from the country’s 240 billion-euro ($259 billion) bailout. A meeting of euro-area finance ministers in Riga on Friday, targeted as a deadline to wrap up talks only two weeks ago, is now likely to pass without an agreement even as payment deadlines loom.

‘Little Bit Tired’

Arriving for the talks, Italian Finance Minister Pier Carlo Padoan said “we don’t expect any definitive results at this meeting.” His Slovak counterpart Peter Kazimir told reporters he feels a “little bit tired” about Greece discussions because “we talk, talk and the substance is missing.”
Martin Sorrell, chief executive officer of WPP Plc, who visited Brussels last week, said euro-area officials seem to have come to terms with a departure of Greece from the single currency. “The odds have moved closer to them going,” he said in a Bloomberg Television interview. It’s “not a given, but more than 50-50.”
The European Central Bank increased the pool of emergency liquidity available for Greek banks by about 1.5 billion euros to 75.5 billion euros on Wednesday after the standoff aggravated a deposit flight.
Economists are torn about whether the government will introduce capital controls, with chances ranging from 20 percent to 100 percent, according to the survey. The median probability is 50 percent.

Sense of Urgency

Since striking a deal to extend its bailout program in February, Tsipras’s anti-austerity coalition government has repeatedly expressed confidence that a deal to free bailout disbursements was imminent, only to be rebuffed by euro-area officials seeking concrete steps.
“It’s very important that Greece is accelerating work on the reform list and also starts working on the implementation of program conditionality,” Jeroen Dijsselbloem, who presides over meetings of euro-area finance ministers, said before Friday’s gathering. “There’s a great sense of urgency for all of us to get a deal, but work has to be done before the Eurogroup can take a decision.”
Economists in the survey see the chances of Greece missing some of its debt repayments in the next four to six weeks between 10 percent and 100 percent. The probability range is the same for an exit of the country from the currency region.

Meeting Deadlines

Tsipras issued a decree on Monday forcing local governments to transfer cash reserves currently held in commercial banks to the central bank. The money will be able to be used to meet obligations including the repayment of 770 million euros owed to the International Monetary Fund on May 12. The government also has to pay about 1.5 billion euros in wages and pensions at the end of the month.
Greece and its creditors haven’t discussed having the country miss a payment to the IMF or default, a senior Greek government official said on Thursday.
The euro area now views the end of June to be Greece’s main deadline to unlock aid payments as hopes of a deal before April 30 fade, a European Union official said on Tuesday. That’s when the bailout extension expires and Greece needs to negotiate a successor program before about 7 billion euros of Greek bonds held by the ECB mature in the summer.
If Greece stays in the euro and agrees on a new program, such a package would need to be worth 40 billion euros, according to the survey. Answers ranged from 26 billion euros to 100 euros.
“It’s a little bit misleading to characterize the choice or the outlook for Greece right now in binary terms between a deal and Grexit,” Ebrahim Rahbari, an economist at Citigroup Global Markets Inc. in New York, said in a Bloomberg TV interview. “I don’t think that there’s any chance that you’ll have a resolution one way or the other in the next couple of days, or even weeks.”

vrijdag 17 april 2015

Balkan bereidt zich voor op Grieks failliet

ATHENE (AFN) - De landen in het zuidoosten van Europa bereiden zich voor op een mogelijk faillissement van Griekenland. Dat meldde de Griekse krant Kathimerini vrijdag.
Volgens de krant hebben de centrale banken van Bulgarije, Albanië, Roemenië, Servië, Cyprus, Macedonië en Turkije de lokale dochterbedrijven van de Griekse banken opgedragen de portefeuilles met Griekse staatsobligaties en kredieten af te stoten. Daarmee worden de Griekse banken praktisch onder quarantaine geplaatst, aldus de krant.
De vier grootste Griekse banken National Bank of Greece, Alpha Bank, Piraeus en Eurobank hebben een sterke aanwezigheid in die landen met 2500 filialen en circa 40.000 werknemers.