There have been several issues in the past, some we seem to embrace as ‘dangerous’ towards the survival of the Euro, some less so. There has been a detectable increase (including from myself) into the events as they are occurring. Yet, any nation, has forever had moments of bad news, so why are we so eager to predict the downfall of a united coin?
You see, we all agree that there will be good times and times that are less so, yet in all this a level head should prevail. This means that there is balance. Nations tend to float their coin when things are poor and as decent times return, that floatation option dissipates. As nations were balanced, these waves still happen, but they were less extreme. Which meant that there were currency cycles, which is not a mystery!
So when the Euro came, a stronger more balanced currency became the global player, with a few ‘visionaries’ claiming that this is the haven of all currency. In that regard, let’s take a look at Rasul Shams (at http://ageconsearch.umn.edu/bitstream/26228/1/dp050321.pdf), a discussion paper from 2005. Here we see “One of the basic statement of a full developed theory of world money is that the world economy exhibits a specific structure, which is changing through time and that the world money adjusts to these specific characteristics of the world economy and underlies therefore itself large-scale changes in the long run. To understand the development of the world money and any long-range modification in its manifestation through time one has therefore first to study the dynamic stability of the world economy” (page 6). On Page 14 we get “Kenen (2002) and McKinnon (2002), both looking on the use of Euro in trading, bond issues, bank liabilities and official reserves, appreciate the strong role of Euro as an international currency but do not believe, it could be in a position to displace the central role of the Dollar. McKinnon refers to the reinforced Dollar standard by the ongoing price stability in the United States as the main reasons why the Dollar supremacy will continue“. In addition we see “Hartmann and Issing 2002; Huismann, Meesters and Oort 2000; Beckmann, Born and Kösters 2002), looking at the evolving international role of the Euro come to the conclusion that the Euro has indeed a great potential to expand further its international role but that this will be a long run process, not to be realised in the near future“. Now we get the first issue.
You see, certain players behind the screens must have made certain events happen to flow the Euro against the dollar as the 2004 crash became a reality. Now consider that the initial European Exchange Rate Mechanism (ERM) was introduced somewhere before 1980 to reduce exchange rate variability and achieve monetary stability in Europe. In that system the currencies were still floated to the minimalistic degree, depending on the local economy. So when the Euro became the coin, that game changed. Suddenly nations lost their personal flotilla device. Now for the larger economies like France, Germany and the United Kingdom it was not that much of an issue. There was a degree of control. The UK had even more options as they remained to keep a sterling position. The other players were however in a less favourable position. They now had other issues to deal with. As those nations all got an interesting credit card, we saw a growing problem. Greece and Ireland being the larger problems, but in no way the most deadly of them. That part must be reserved to Italy and France. The EEC has a total ‘national’ debt of well over 12.5 trillion. With 50% of that debt belonging to Germany, France and Italy. Germany was until recently safe, because their economy was decent and their unemployment rate was below 5%, this is now changing through several parts. The Germans have many sides to their economy, yet when we read that the Deutsche Bank posted a €6.8 billion loss in 2015, thanks to a €12 billion write-down linked to litigation charges and restructuring costs, and it set aside more to cover any potential litigation (at Read more: http://www.afr.com/markets/deutsche-banks-troubles-unmask-bigger-risks-20160203-gmken9), we see new dark clouds. Apart from the DB shares going down to 10% of what they were before the financial crises, we must wonder what other effects are in place. Here is part of the problem. We can state on one side that one hiccup like that should not be a worry, but the economy in Germany is having a slow start. In addition as other nations are showing a slowing need for Deutsche Grundlichkeit, they are looking for alternative providers, cheaper providers, which is a given. Now add the VW scandal, which pushes down Covestro. All parts of multi Billion Euro sided Bayer. Now for a history lesson (at http://www.press.bayer.com/baynews/baynews.nsf/id/Bayer-MaterialScience-to-be-called-Covestro), which gives us “Bayer intends to float Covestro on the stock market by mid-2016 at the latest. The plan for Bayer Material Science to become a separate company was announced in September 2014” on one side, the timing is great for the board of directors who get to write off the losses from taxation and still get that 8 figure bonus. For the German government that is bad news on top of bad news. So as Germany was not a problem for the Euro, it is now a worry that is growing, growing by the day.
In all this I must now add that the national debt of Germany which represents one third of 50% now becomes an issue.
In addition, the hardship from France as it remains in a state of emergency. In addition, as too many people focus on the fact that the French Economy is moving ahead at 1.1%, which is a good achievement. Yet the unemployment rate is slowly creeping to 11%, in addition, the youth unemployment rate in France increased to 25.90, which means that the French hardship is still escalating. So as we see an economy growth of 1.1%, it is countered by ‘French unemployment rises by highest rate since 2013’ (at http://www.france24.com/en/20151126-french-unemployment-rises-highest-rate-2013), which will impact the French budget. In that regard so far (3 months later) no clear solutions have been presented by the current French government. In addition, the extremist and refugee issues are pressing more and more on the French morale, less and less acceptance is seen there. The French political landscape is still under attack, as the issues deepen, more and more people are starting to listen to Marine Le Pen, who is now seeking alliances with Italy’s Lega Nord, which also includes Geert Wilders from the Dutch PVV and Heinz-Christian Strache from the Austrian Freedom Party. These factors are important, for the simple reason that until 2 years ago Lega Nord was not even a blip on the radar of anyone who mattered in politics. That is no longer the case, more important, the stronger and the more united these right wing parties become, the bigger the collapse of the Euro. I would never have considered these parties to be anything bust extreme in chance. The inability of France’s François Hollande to get the economy to any degree on track is central here. The 1.1% melts away to -3% when we see the cost for France rise and rise. The plan for 500,000 vocational training schemes might sound nice, but that is not any guarantee to growth of economy, just an absolute guaranty to cost well over a billion, with more costs down the track. Italy is in a place not much better, even as both nations have products people want, the bulk of people are not buying the amount both governments need to see bought.
Now we see these elements as the UK has given the Brexit referendum to take place on June 23rd, which means that we are about to get flooded by propaganda from all sides, including newspapers on staying in, or moving out. The Guardian was quickly on board on how the environment would suffer (at http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/feb/03/brexit-would-return-britain-to-being-dirty-man-of-europe), whilst happily ignoring that a homeless person due to no job and no home has a worry with drowning in the rain and freezing solid in a park in winter. All these dangers because no one was willing to muzzle Greece, or bankers for that matter. So as we now see how Goldman Sachs is stating that Brexit could cost pound a 20% drop in value, should we remember those at Goldman Sachs that they are one of the responsible parties that got this entire economic mess started?
Now we get back to the continuation of the Euro issue as I saw it in the beginning. As we see how political parties are influencing events, the political element not seen is how political players have been spending others people money, without fear of persecution, prosecution or accountability. The mere inability of the European nations to keep a proper budget and to keep debts in check is a massive reason why right winged parties are now growing beyond anything. No one seems to be properly measuring data. As national data is inflated (read: weighted) we see optimistic news all over the place, whilst 90% of data and results should have been adjusted from the very beginning. So, we have one currency and all nations are floating the currency by inflating ‘predictions’ of their part of the economy, by the time that falls over, we see waves of managed bad news, yet the currency was from that point onwards never in a proper state, it has not been in that place for a long long time.
Now, France will face the next hurdle. There are too many predictions on how the UK will not go Brexit, but in all this the people are seeing their lifestyle dwindle away and as we see more managed bad news, the British people might have had enough. A strong example here comes from the BBC in December 2015 “Economic growth in 2015 was originally predicted to be 2-2.5%. But in large part because of the decision of the Government to take those bailout talks to the wire that has turned into a 2-2.5% contraction – a deep and painful recession. Now the experts are predicting once again that the economy will return to growth in 2016, unless something else gets in the way“, so as we read this, we see that ‘the experts’ were off by 5%, which is massive, which follows ‘predicted growth’ in 2016. Yet we all know that Greece has had too many problems and when the retirements funds stop because they invested in Greece, where will retirees get their ‘support’ from? They are entitled to that support, but Greece has no more money, debts it cannot pay and it let those who got Greece in that bad a state off the hook. All EEC nations left those Greeks off the hook. So now, as we see that money is running out, which will in the near future could mean that the IMF has to bail out Greece again. If that happens before June 23rd, how do you expect the British referendum voters to react?
One thing is certain, if Brexit happens, François Hollande will get the nightmare situation he dreads, because the Euro without the United Kingdom will not survive through Germany, Italy and France together. In that light it will push Frexit straight to the top, with at some point in 2017 President Marine Le Pen, signing a government act to secede from the Euro and not entirely unlikely secede from the EEC altogether. That last statement is massively speculative, but not impossible. It is nationalism that are driving the French to her and the Italians to Matteo Salvini, there is still the dangers that Nigel Farage will get on the ‘I told you so horse‘, which had a 1:1,000,000 chance to win. Now my £10 will turn into a nice retirement funds for a nice place on Guernsey (if someone honours that deal). A wave started by the mere political short-sightedness of not having a legal door to expel bad nations and their economic acts. An oversight that will result in additional trillions of write-offs and hardship for the European population at large.
A view I stated in 2013, there is now a decent chance that I will be proven right 3 years later, a mere data analyst without an economic degree.
Yet, can I be wrong? Of course I could be, but you should ask yourself: ‘Where is MY benefit?’ I am not asking you to state this in some rage of selfishness. I am asking you to look at your life, your family and all the parts you lost in the last 10 years. All the things you worked for and what you have been left with. Now, many people have not lost what they had, but their financial progress seems to have minimised, largely due to outside influences, some of them due to really bad internal governing. So how does a Brit feels when the hardship he faces comes from the bad acts not just from the UK, but in addition to the acts from Spain, Greece, Portugal and other nations? In addition, we see that those governments do not seem to be held accountable, neither are the decision makers held accountable by other governments. Now, the average Brit accepts that his government makes mistakes, just like the average Frenchman, or Italians for that matter. But neither wants to pay for the cock-ups of another government, especially as no one is held accountable, so that part leaves us with Brexit and the chance of it becoming a reality. Yet when we see the quote in the Independent “David Cameron has urged mainstream Conservative MPs not to be bullied by party activists into campaigning to leave the European Union as he took on his Tory critics with a fierce defence of his reform blueprint“, we have to consider that the risk is a lot larger than David Cameron is comfortable with, which works for Nigel Farage. The accusations that others are now accusing the UKIP MEPs, who allegedly have been intimidating other members of the European Parliament.
So, now, after a year, the UKIP members that were never seen as anything serious are now ‘intimidating’ others? So now we see the picture caption ‘Green MEP Molly Scott Cato admonished Farage and Ukip MEPs‘, yet in the Guardian (at http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/feb/03/brexit-would-return-britain-to-being-dirty-man-of-europe) we see “It will work with green groups to persuade people that leaving the EU could set back the UK’s nature protection and prevention of pollution many years“, so the battlelines of Brexit are being drawn and the question becomes, where is the truth and why are certain bad elements not being held accountable, that is the real reason why Brexit and Frexit are a reality. As no one addresses that because of the ‘friends’ these proclaimers of ‘other’ reasons have, they are driving constituents straight into the arms of Nigel Farage, Marine Le Pen and Matteo Salvini. Nigel enabled Marine (to a small extent), the fear of Brexit pushes Marine to a large extent and all those elements are now making Matteo Salvini a threat to the Italian way of life. The question whether that is for good or bad is too early to tell, but the impact will be massive in all three nations. So whatever comes next will be speculative to a larger extent which is, until June 25th, as that date could be the start of a massive upheaval all over Europe, which could hit as far as Japan and the United States of America.