Saturday, November 26, 2011

NYT on Europe etc...

"Standard & Poor’s downgraded Belgium’s credit standing
to AA from AA+,
saying it might not be able to cut its towering debt load
any time soon.

Ratings agencies this week
cautioned that France could lose its AAA rating
if the crisis grew.

...agencies lowered the ratings of Portugal and Hungary
to junk.

...even the idea of a breakaway Greece
is increasingly considered anathema.

Despite expectations that Greece
...may receive European taxpayer bailouts
...officials fear its exit could open a Pandora’s box of horrors,
such as a second Lehman-like event,
or even the exit of other countries from the euro union.

...Certain businesses are taking similar precautions.

...If Spain, Italy, Portugal and France
were to start printing their old money again today,
their currencies would most likely weaken against the dollar,
reflecting the relative weakness of their economies...

In Asia...regulators view the situation with growing alarm.

Norman Chan,
the chief executive of the Hong Kong Monetary Authority,
said ...regulators had stepped up their surveillance
of banks’ exposure to Europe.

...The main danger of a euro breakup “redenomination risk,”
the unpredictable effect that a euro breakup would have
on financial assets as newly created currencies
sought their own levels in the market
and the value of contracts drawn up in euros
came into question.

Most people hope that will not happen.

..."If a country leaves the euro
— multiply the Lehman effect by 10,”..."


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