The warnings are flying today so let’s take a look at a few of them, including a couple of my own.
Trichet Warns Heads of States
The New York Times reports Euro Zone Leaders Get Warning From Central Bankers
With stock and bond markets on a roller-coaster ride reminiscent of the 2008 financial crisis, Jean-Claude Trichet and Mario Draghi, the current and incoming chiefs of the European Central Bank, had a pointed message for European leaders Monday: Get your act together.
Europe’s top central bankers couched their admonishment in diplomatic terms during speeches in Paris focusing on the world three years after the collapse of Lehman Brothers. But the warning was clear: politicians are still not moving quickly enough to ensure that the euro zone’s debt crisis does not become seriously worse.
Europe needs to “make a quantum step up in economic and political integration,” Mr. Draghi said as the bond yields of Greece, Italy and other countries with weak finances jumped Monday amid investor fears that such efforts might be unraveling.
Mr. Draghi’s call goes to the heart of what politicians now acknowledge is a root cause of Europe’s crisis, but that few seem ready to change: the lack of a federal fiscal union that would make the euro zone look more like the United States. The idea is something that Germany and others are wary of because it could undermine their national authority.
“All this reminds one of the fall of 2008,” Josef Ackermann, the chief executive of Deutsche Bank, said in Frankfurt, Bloomberg News reported.
Mr. Trichet, who turns over the E.C.B. presidency to Mr. Draghi at the end of October, renewed calls for a federal European government, with a federal finance ministry. Those institutions would have the power to “impose decisions on countries” whose own policies threaten the rest of the euro union, Mr. Trichet said at the Paris conference, sponsored by the Institute Montaigne, a research group.
In Brussels, meanwhile, an unusual gathering of former European leaders, academics and industrialists urged politicians to recognize that part of the answer to Europe’s ills was to relinquish some sovereignty to keep the euro alive.
“It has become clear that a monetary union without some form of fiscal federalism and coordinated economic policy will not work,” the group said in a statement. Its members include a former German chancellor, Gerhard Schröder; a former Finnish prime minister, Matti Vanhanen; and Nouriel Roubini, a New York University economist.
Italian President Warns “Markets Lost Confidence in Italy”
Italy’s president is nothing more than a figurehead with little power. Nonetheless, his message comes through loud and clear.
Reuters reports Italian President warns on “alarming” debt signals
Italian President Giorgio Napolitano urged swift action to strengthen planned austerity measures on Monday, saying a severe market selloff was a clear warning that markets had lost confidence in Italy.
“No one can underestimate the alarming signal from today’s surge in the differential between the prices of Italian public debt instruments and those of Germany,” Napolitano said in a statement.
“It is a sign of the persistent difficulty in regaining trust as is urgently and indispensably required,” he said, adding that he urged all parties not to block measures needed to restore credibility.
ECB Warns its Willingness to Buy Bonds “should not be taken for granted”
Here is a pair of bonus warning from the Reuters article.
The ECB has also stepped up its warnings, with Mario Draghi, who takes over as head of the central bank in November, delivering a pointed warning on Monday that its willingness to continue buying bonds “should not be taken for granted.”
The CGIL, Italy’s largest union, has called a general strike on Tuesday to protest the austerity measures, which have also been condemned as “weak and ineffective” by the country’s main employers federation, Confindustria.
A poll published by the left-leaning daily La Repubblica on Monday showed support for Berlusconi’s government has crumbled, falling to 22 percent in September, from 27 percent in June and 29 percent in February this year.
The Prime Minister’s approval rating falling to 22% is a huge warning sign as is the strike by CGIL. Voters have had enough austerity programs.
In Germany, voters warn Merkel thay have had enough of her.
IMF Renews Warning on Bank Capitalization
France 24 reports IMF head warns again about Europe bank capitalisation
The head of the International Monetary Fund Christine Lagarde insisted that European banks needed extra capital, in a magazine interview on Monday.
“We believe that overall it is necessary to recapitalise European banks so that they are strong enough to withstand the risks linked to the debt crisis and weak growth,” Lagarde told the weekly magazine Der Spiegel.
Recapitalisation was needed “to avert contagion” of the problems, she said.
German banking shares fell heavily in initial trading on Monday.
Shares in Deutsche Bank were showing a fall of 5.34 percent to 24.63 euros and Commerzbank shares fell by 4.37 percent to 1.84 euros on renewed concern about the eurozone debt crisis owing to new strains over the Greek programme to reform public finances.
Hello Trichet, Draghi How about a Little Realism?
This is my warning to Trichet:
Hello Mr. Trichet.
The odds 17 sovereign states “get their act together” quickly regarding a fiscal union is zero.
There is no agreement on Eurobonds even from Germany and France, so how are 17 countries supposed to quickly agree on that?
Finland and Austria want collateral, and pray tell why shouldn’t they? Is every country supposed to do exactly what you want?
Greece is going to default and you and your big ego made matters worse by refusing to accept that fact, so much so that you and the ECB failed to plan for it.
You want 17 countries to get their act together. How about one central bank, the ECB, led by you, get its act together and admit your policies have failed? How about the ECB coming up with a legitimate plan for dealing with it this crisis instead of illegally making demands on sovereign nations?
The market gave you fair warning on Greece and you refused to see it. Now the market has said “time’s up”.
Face the facts Mr. Trichet “The Euro has failed.”
Mr. Trichet, you better come up with a plan to deal with the aftermath, because odds of a Eurozone breakup are large and growing.
Given Trichet was one of the key architects of the now-failed Euro experiment, much of what is happening now is his fault.
General Market Warning
I repeat my general market warning made on August 4: Crashes Happen When “Oversold”
Last evening in an interview with Chris Martenson I said “This is not a prediction Chris, but markets does not crash on overbought conditions, they crash on oversold conditions.”
This is not a crash yet, but it could very well be the start of one.
Mike “Mish” Shedlock
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