Something I would like to share from the Golem XIV's blog:
Sunday, 27 March 2011
An interesting week ahead
This is going to be an interesting week.
The Irish are now openly saying they want to make the Senior bond holders take some of the bank losses. That is most definitely not in the European Financial Class's game plan. Neither France nor Germany nor the UK will like the sound of it. Because for senior bond holders read their banks, big funds and insurance companies.
This was always about bailing out other nations' banks and any restructuring of who takes what losses will simply make that clear. We will simply get to see which banks in which countries suddenly have to raise cash or get another bail out. Not only would it be a very public humiliation but it would also tell the world which banks were weakest. Given that banking is almost entirely based upon lies this would not be a good outcome for them.
Of course the obvious answer is for the big European players to use the ECB to quietly and confidentially buy up those bonds and make all Europe's tax payers pay by a more indirect and less democratic route. The problem is, while it prevents a convulsion and a nasty leak of raw truth in the short term, it doesn't undo the real damage.
The real damage is that IF Ireland sticks to their threat nearly all possible outcomes for the Big Banks become very bad. Which, providing they have the balls, puts Ireland in a very strong position.
If Ireland goes through with forcing Senior Bond holders to take their share of the losses, then it will be revealed that it was the big banks who were being protected at the expense of ordinary people all along. A whole new season of banker bashing would open.
It would also mean people in other countries who are being told day after day that they 'have no choice' but to impose even greater 'austerity' measures or that they 'must' have an IMF/EU 'rescue' package imposed upon them and accept whatever punitive terms the IMF/EU see fit, might decide they too are going to simply call everyone's bluff and say 'no'.
Even the possibility of such a contagion of rebellion would be quite sufficient to induce another credit crunch of banks refusing to lend to each other. Because who would know which banks would be affected next if Portugal or Hungary or even Spain or Italy were to start talking about their senior bond holders? That kind of uncertainty is what stopped banks lending to each other the first time.
So Ireland doesn't even have to go through with it. They need only engender a worry that they might.
Equally bad for the Big Banks and the financial class/senior bond holders, is if he ECB bails them out and buys the bonds. Because once that happens for Ireland, after all the adamant proclamations that it would never happen, then who is going to believe that Portugal or even Greece, couldn't force the same concession? Or Spain?
Then it becomes a political nightmare. Merkel is already wounded. If it looks to her domestic enemies that she is further losing control then the fragile Franco/German unity, such as it is, will collapse. The UK will not hold it together.
And here are some of the comments:
Golem XIV - Thoughts said...
An audit of the debt is a brilliant thing to push for. It cuts to the bone aginst bank confidentiality and will thus be resisted to the last in those countries like Ireland and the UK whose banks have the most to hide.
All the mosre reason to push for it. And if the major paritres and their leadership will not back it then we simply need a new party and a new leadership.
I don't want the big society. I want the honest society.
28 March 2011 17:44
Pat Flannery said...
Simon Coveney, the new Irish Minister of Agriculture who made the most recent "burn the bondholders" remark, is a co-constituent of Michael Martin the leader of what is left of the ousted Fianna Fail governing party. I have no doubt that Coveney's remarks to the media on the weekend were fully approved in advance by Kenny's Cabinet.
It was good politics to have Coveney become the Fine Gael spokesperson on this because his Cork constitency is ground zero for the old kiss-ass Euro-compliance of Michael Martins Fianna Fail versus the new self assertiveness of Fine Gael.
The simple reality is that if the Europeans do not burn the bondholders the Irish will burn the Europeans. Cork is known as the "Rebel County". It took the lead in the War of Independence against the British in 1921 and will take the lead against the banksters and their corrupt politicans.
28 March 2011 18:34
Whistleblower IRL said...
I wish I could share your enthusiasm for Fine Gael's alleged appetite to go after the "banksters" as you call them, but I'm afraid my experience thus far prevents me from doing so. The reason is simple, here is a quote from an email I received from the office of one of Fine Gael most senior deputies:
"Deputy X has been in touch with the Financial Regulator, and set out the concerns raised at the meeting [a meeting between the Deputy and myself, WbIRL] on the matters which do not appear to have been addressed. I understand that these concerns are being followed up by the Regulator who has promised Deputy X a reply in due course."
I received this e-mail in JUNE 2010. I'm sorry to report that NOTHING was received from the distinguished deputy since then. It took until November last year before the issue was raised in the Dail (Irish parliament) by Joan Burton of the Labour party. UniCredit is still laughing loudly at the charade that is Irish banking. I know, the IFSC is a small place.
Here is another interesting point in question: why can we not get the truth about the hasty sale of Anglo's Austrian operation shortly before the parent bank in Dublin was nationalised? Kathleen Barrington of the Sunday Business Post has repeatedly raised the issue; as recently as last February she approached Anglo-Irish, now headed by Alan Dukes - a dedicated Fine Gael man, for replies. Alas, silence prevails.
Here is Barrington's most recent article about Anglo Vienna:
"How FitzPatrick sent a €600m deposit book waltzing to Vienna"-
Re your comment of "I want the honest society." - my impression is that the 'burn the bonholders' game is simply a poker game in which political leaders are trying to see who can hold out the longest in not having to tell their electorate the truth. Frau Merkel certainly does not want to have to explain to every German taxpayer why they will have to continue cough up money for the bail-out of HRE/Depfa. Enda Kenny would much rather have us, the Irish public, believe that the source of all evil are those nasty continental Europeans, rather than have to instigate proceedings against Irish politicians and senior civil servants who have let criminal 'banksters' get away with it. The liquidity regulations over which I resigned in 2007 clearly state a possible penalty of FIVE years in prison for failing to adhere to liquidity requirements. The entire Irish banking system almost collapsed in Sept 2008 as it had run completely dry of liquidity. Who is to blame? No one. Who is paying for it? Everyone.
Ulster Bank employees are running around Ireland (North and Republic) telling all about their fantastic year-end results for 2010; they all seem to happily ignore the fact that had it not been for the UK tax-payer bailing them out, none of them would have jobs. RBS is Ulster Banks' parent bank...
Merkel and Kenny and their respective domestic banks are just an example for what has happened all over Europe. There are some clues to solving the mystery - notice how the the bailout of HRE/Depfa makes perfect sense through the eyes of Deutsche Bank shareholders, or have a look at the mock arrest of Anglo-Irish bank's ex CEO and the subsequent tapes that appeared in the public domain not too long after.
UniCredit Ireland's EX Risk-Manager
Links to all relevant official debates and regulation documents can be found on my blog.
28 March 2011 20:01
Golem XIV - Thoughts said...
Good to hear from you. I agree that leaders are seeing if who amongst them can manage not to tell their citizens anything by forcing other countries to be their fall guy. Perhaps I am too naive to hope that some country can start a rebellion that brings the entire game down.
And yes the HRE/Depfa nightmare does make more sense when seen from Deutsche's position. Germany was and is protecting its own TBTF banks and then trying to blame Ireland to cover the truth.
28 March 2011 23:34
On a somewhat different note, but not unrelated, I strongly recommend reading Golem's piece about the notion of 'Regulation'. The pertinent examples used are the themes of Atomic Energy and Finance.