Bernard Connolly: Why the Euro Crisis Isn't Over |

From Brian Carney’s weekend interview with Bernard Connolly:

…But even if the Greeks were undisciplined, he says, “both the sovereign-debt crisis and the banking crisis are symptoms, not causes. And the underlying problem has been that there was a massive bubble generated in the world as a whole by monetary policy—but particularly in the euro zone” by European Central Bank policy.

The bubble formed like this: When countries such as Ireland, Greece and Spain joined the euro, their interest rates immediately dropped to near-German levels, in some cases from double-digit territory. “The optimism created by these countries’ suddenly finding that they could have low interest rates without their currencies collapsing, which had been their previous experience, led people to think that there was a genuine rate-of-return revolution going on,” he says.

There had been an increase in the rates of return in Ireland “and to some extent in Spain” in the run-up to euro membership, thanks to structural reforms in those countries in the pre-euro period. But by the time the euro rolled around, money was flowing into these countries out of all proportion to the opportunities available…..

Read more at The Weekend Interview with Bernard Connolly: Why the Euro Crisis Isn't Over –

How to Fix Europe’s Banks –

Francesco Guerrera: A simple solution is staring the likes of Deutsche Bank AG, BNP Paribas SA and Banco Santander in the face: large, decisive, increases in capital through equity sales that would allay investor concerns and boost balance sheets. With the year-end results almost all out of the way, banks should start raising capital soon. The experience of the U.S. financial crisis shows that in stressed times capital infusions can cure or mask many ills and buy valuable time to restructure businesses.

via How to Fix Europe’s Banks –

The Euro Crisis Makes Absolutely No Sense – Brett Arends (WSJ)

WSJ: Mean Street

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Brett Arends exposes flaws in Eurozone efforts to resolve the currency crisis.