Greece against the Ropes – Again
February 22, 2012 | 08:57 AM
Posted by David Mason
The markets are still buzzing about the confirmed bailout of Greece which will set the EU and ECB back 130 billion euros. Despite grudging agreement by politicians, it is the acceptance of the bailout stipulations by the Greek people that may be more important. Thus far, it appears that the Greek people are not ready to accept the painful ramifications that the bailout entails and many political pundits do not believe that the Greek government has the political capital with is constituents to institute that daring and widely opposed austerity measures that EU finance leaders demand. Greece also needs private debt holders to swap bonds. The worry is that there may be numerous holdouts that are unwilling to take the Greek government to court if they feel that they’re left out in the cold.
Good news for Japanese stocks as Yen falls
Early trading so far has been positive for Japanese stocks, with the Nikkei 225 reaching a six month high after the JPY dropped to 80 cents against the greenback. The resurgence of Japanese stocks has been especially uplifting for automakers, with both Toyota and Nissan up by 1.8 percent and 1.9 percent respectively. The euro is up only slightly against the greenback, with the energizing news of the Greek bailout agreement losing some steam.
Gold remains steady
Gold has remained steady over the last several days, down slightly this morning by 0.10%. The precious metal appears to be completely oblivious to the events taking place in Europe. One possibility for the lack of recognition by investors is that they are growing tired of the posturing by EU leaders and the belief that lawmakers do not have the political clout to enforce their decisions. Silver is also down this morning, trading at 34.220.
Oil remains steady
Crude oil is holding at around 106.27 USD per barrel. The realization that the Greek bailout will be difficult to implement, along with lower demand in the United States as motorists drive less due to higher gas prices, has soured the mood of investors. These two events, that should has pushed oil prices down, were offset by the Iranian refusal to allowing energy inspectors from entering it’s suspected nuclear military base.
Two reports to watch for today are the MPC Meeting Minutes from the UK and in the afternoon, the Existing Home Sales in the United States. Tomorrow, the Unemployment Claims report will be released in the U.S.