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Edinbugh Talk cancelled

I am very sorry to do this at the last moment.

But I talked to the people organizing it and they said there was so much snow and forecast for more that they felt we should cancel.  The organizers will drop email’s to those they had previously contacted.

I am off to the station to see if they will give me a refund on the ticket.

My sincerely apologies to all of you and I hope we can arrange another meeting perhaps just after Christmas.

3 Responses to Edinbugh Talk cancelled

  1. Lars Eirik November 30, 2010 at 5:20 am #

    Dear Golem, are you able pick up on what is happening in Germany at any time, what with the language barrier and all? It seems that news from Germany may be underreported in the English-speaking news. At least that was said about last weeks remarks from Merkel; it took a while before her statement in front of an all-German audience was noticed. You have any German news media you recommend for financial stuff? I believe some of the most important news may now come from Germany when day by day they see their bill mounting ever higher. Surely they must walk away from it sooner or later.

    Nils Prately in the Guardian:

    "It was clearly madness in the past to encourage senior bondholders in eurozone banks and governments to believe that they were protected in full. That assumption contributed to the crazy situation whereby the governments of Greece, Ireland, Spain, Portugal and everywhere else were able to borrow at virtually the same rate as Germany.

    In future, under the Franco-German plan, bondholders would be obliged to exercise judgment about who they finance and at what price. Greater market discipline sounds like a move towards greater sanity.

    But fine ideals are one thing. The problem with the plan – at least in the eyes of today's bondholders – is that it was not accompanied by a loud declaration from Germany and France that all eurozone government debt would be honoured in full until 2013."

    One must really wonder how the brains of financial commentators like Nils Prately works, no indication at all that the basic presumptions are the least questioned.

    First what bondholders have been encouraged to believe does not make a legally binding obligation. I'm not even aware that they have been such encouraged either or by whom? It has always been just wishful thinking of bondholders.

    Now, instead of letting the bondholders try to sue whoever encouraged them in this false belief, Mr Prately would prefer that Germany and France made the false beleif true and actually declared themselves guarantuors for paying all the governmental Euro debt in case of default – rather like Ireland did for all creditors to all its banks in 2008. We know where that path led… Does anyone even know the amount France and Germany would have to underwrite if they took on "all eurozone government debt"? Well, at least Mr. Prately does not demand that France and Germany guarantees banks debts also.

    Another thing: The bond markets (and their puppet journalists) seem to revert to wishful thinking en lieu of real binding obligations also when they interpret the mid-2013 reservation. They seem to interpret it to the effect that all presently issued bonds have that protection they have "been encouraged to" believe in. Truth is that at the best the EFSF may be(or maybe not according to circumstances) able to refinance debt/interests that matures from now on to mid-2o13, but for all the other bonds no protection exists but false belief in it(encouraged or not)

  2. Golem XIV - Thoughts November 30, 2010 at 2:57 pm #


    I firmnly believe the silence regarding guarantees about bonds up to 2013 is because France and Germany fully intend on moving the gaol posts and clobbering the bonds before 2013.

    They are trying to bluff the bond market and teh market has seen it. That is what I belive is going on. The Politicians will now be obliged to continue to lie and teh market will continue to not believe them.

    I believe we are now on the cusp of the end game. Spain in in the debt death-spiral. Bond worries increase rate demanded, increases borrowing costs, which exceed growth which means they miss growth targets and have to make more cuts which firther depress growth, etc.

    Pratly is lost. So are most of the others including Peston. I hear Stepohany Flanders on BBC and have to restrain myself.

    I agree about German news. Try "EuroIntelligence". Good sumary with links to originals.

  3. Unclear November 30, 2010 at 4:27 pm #

    "But what about Belgium?" they clamour.

    Now normally, my reaction to this question would be words to the effect of, "The situation in Belgium is not uppermost on my list of pressing concerns."

    However since the Spanish Bond Disaster Blog, I have found myself strangely drawn to the FT Ten Year Government Bond Spreads data. And what it appears to show is that the price of Belgian bonds has suddenly moved from the group of 'Safe' countries into the group of 'Less Safe'. This bodes ill for those who like to use the PIGS mnemonic.

    Anyhow, the rate for Belgium, 4.03% and rising fast has more in common with Italy (4.68%) and Spain (5.57%), than France and the Netherlands 3%ish).

    It's like watching a flotilla of pedallos moored against the pier, becoming untethered one after the other and disappearing over the horizon.

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