Sunday, June 17, 2012

There will be no return

So the centralist won the Greek election, which will commit the country to unsustainable policy by default.  Even though markets cheer for now, which should not be too strong after the huge burst today given that the central banks have no clear reason to intervene, markets should understand this would set up the eventual exit of Greece from the Eurozone, and there will be no return from here.  Syriza will watch on the sidelines until the current government fails under the unsustainable policy.  With the economic deterioration and bank runs from now to then, as well as the return to primary surplus of Greece in early 2013, it will make the exit from the Eurozone a viable and attractive (in relative terms) option.  However, history has shown that the Greek exit from the Eurozone will set up the greatest investment opportunity in the last three years (rather than investing in bubbles in emerging markets).  I am dreaming about the day when Spain will fall out of the Euro bed ;=). 

Friday, June 15, 2012

Like always, if all the Central Banks are about to take out the big gun, follow the flow of the crowd

The crowd always listens and tries to start a party. This might be initially offset partially by the uncertain outcome of Greek election and the subsequent bargaining between Greece and Germany. That could set up the buying opportunities when markets dip occasionally. Or if you were brave enough to short since April, now is the opportunity to cover your shorts before markets go up a bit from here. Among the central banks, the U.K. is likely to ease soon. The U.S. probably will have to wait till July with only some Twist type of actions in June. ECB will stand by with some bond buying but a new round of LTRO will be a long shot. Maybe no market rally leading into Greek election would have been a better thing for markets; that way, we will get more stimulus, which sets up for a bigger rally.

But the Eurozone issue will come back soon enough, even if Greece is unlikely to leave Eurozone this year (and most likely the next year). It will also be even more difficult for China to hide the strong side effect of its imbalanced growth. By the end of this year, we probably will have another bout of shakeup when markets start to forget how painful it could be by being overly optimistic. To avoid some partisan accusation / perception, the Fed may not be as forthcoming if things start to drift down again before the election.