Wednesday, November 16, 2011


That's about the only comment I can make about Italy's new government.  It is composed of not one politician.  Not one.  Super Mario has as far as I can tell hit a home run, gone for six, scored a hat trick and done whatever other sports comparison one wishes to concept.  Now having no real idea who any of these guys are we are going to have to wait to see just what this bold step hath brung which I suspect will occur shortly in a flurry of activity as soon as the Italian parliament puts its stamp of approval on these proceedings which seems to be a foregone conclusion.

Yields retreated slightly in today's trading as there is a clear "wait and see" mode of thinking settling in on both sides of the pond but 10 year Treasuries spun down to 2.02 indicating wait and see is backed up with a good deal of "run for the hills" thinking as well.  Meanwhile, in an act of less than high intelligence, Fitch put out a note suggesting that while the outlook is stable for the time being, U.S. banks might be in trouble if thing don't get better in Euroland.  Imagine, we actually reward genius such as this.  Of course a lot of other things might be in trouble as well but this served only to beat down this distressed sector even more.  Once again this brings up the fact that in the stupidity that is Dodd/Frank there is no mention of rating agencies who, arguably, have done more harm throught their inaction, lack of attention, lack of understanding, mis-timed statements and just plain stupidity than any 25 year old with a slide rule at Goldman Sachs.  Where is the guy who starred in the Texas Chain Saw Massacres when you need him?  The Euros almost had a good idea yesterday when they proposed that no ratings should be published on soverign debt during this period (the French were behind that move...surprise!) but it was beaten down.  I say almost, because the right idea would be to shut them down altogether or failing in that require that any institutional investor certify that investments made on behalf of their clients be soley as the result of their own independent analysis with the views of say, a Fitch, be considered only as a tool.  Imagine asking someone who is being paid to do a job actually be forced to do it!  Damn.  That's almost as radical as a government without politicians.   Wow.

1 comment:

  1. You seem to feel that time can go backwards. Italy is yesterday's news - on to Paris! If risk is about surprises, then the risk is that europe does indeed get its act together and solve some of its actions through collective action. HAH.

    Commerzbank is a ward of the state. Unicredit may already be dead and no one is admitting it yet. Even US Libor-OIS spreads have widenned to 40 bps.

    As Kyle Bass put it on BBC yesterday, you know Europe is screwed up when they have a German pope and an Italian central banker.

    Spray foam on the runway and stay thirsty my friend.