Monday, 21 May 2012

Daily Forex Brief London: Monday 21st May 2012

It's Monday and the shifting sands of the European mindset are moving (not for the first time) towards the issuance of common bonds as a means of overcoming the sovereign crisis. This is one of the changes in momentum that has emerged from the weekend's meeting of G8 leaders, together with giving the EFSF the ability to re-capitalise banks. It's a sign that there is stronger desire to see an alternative to the hard-line German stance of austerity, with few after-thoughts. Furthermore, the German Chancellor will find it increasingly difficult to resist this shift, especially when it is being endorsed at the international level. The wider issue is that at no point have European leaders really seized the initiative on the crisis, compromising by doing just as much as they believe necessary to stop things getting worse, rather than going all in to turn things around. Imagine where we would be if Greece had restructured its debt back in May 2010, a decent firewall was set-up and a shift towards common bonds was put into train. Most likely, we'd be in a better place than we are now. The single currency recovered on Friday, despite the weaker tone to stocks. This is partly a function of the extent of the short-positioning that has built up in the single currency, which could mean that a push below the year's low at 1.2724 could prove a little tougher than some expect.

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