GFC: Five Years On

5 years after financial crash, many losers — and some big winners

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ETA

Are we witnessing the primordial nudges that are the prelude to WWIII? The players are not so much jostling as scrambling for positions. Admittedly, after recent rumblings and manoeuvrings over the last few months (wars and rumours of wars), things have for the moment gone a little quiet. Granted, it’s early days yet; but make no mistake of the significance.

The focus is presently on Syria, for obvious and truly horrific reasons. Egypt has had her go; Libya and Tunisia also. And as Iran is in the process of changing presidents this week, it notably has committed ground troops to Syria at a time when the US has now said it will supply weapons to the Rebels amidst the recent apparent confirmation that the (truly despotic) Assad regime has used chemical weapons on his people.

The use of chemical weapons has by all accounts been rather small-scale; nonetheless, this has been the consistent US rhetoric for when Syria “crosses the line” that triggers US involvement.

Add to this mix Turkey, now dipping its big toe into the Arab Spring, as the latest instalment to regional unrest; not to mention the renewed volatility in an otherwise recently nascent Lebanese hard-line minority.

What is striking is the global mood swing over recent years; mainly since the GFC. One could argue the ‘atmosphere’ changed in 2001, but I would contend that there has been a distinct pessimism only since 2008; as if the initial shock of 9/11 was not fully realised until a second great shock came along, albeit 7 years later (reminds one of the ominous warnings of Jonathan Cahn’s The Harbinger).

Suddenly, everything is much clearer: the players have now come into sharp focus; the process is all too familiar; the destination too certain.

ETA: by the next decade?

(Don’t) Be Fooled

Don’t be conned over the next few months (Aug and Sep are traditionally good times for share markets), it’s all there in front of you, in black and white:

The Spanish jobless rate has just hit 24.6% – Yahoo News, 27th July 2012.

Greece may run out of money by Aug 20 – Telegraph, 26th July 2012.

On July 25, 2012, Reuters reported that the National Statistics said Britain’s gross domestic product fell 0.7 percent in the second quarter (the sharpest fall since early 2009) confirming that Britain is mired in its second recession since the financial crisis, with the economy shrinking for a third consecutive quarter.

If the euro zone’s crisis intensifies, the Russian economy could contract by 5% over the next 10 to 12 months – Wall Street Journal, 25 July 2012.

Greece is in a “Great Depression” similar to the American one in the 1930s, the country’s Prime Minister Antonis Samaras told former US President Bill Clinton on Sunday –
Telegraph, July 23 2012.

The ranks of America’s poor are on track to climb to levels unseen in nearly half a century, erasing gains from the war on poverty in the 1960s amid a weak economy and fraying government safety net – Associated Press (Washington), 23 July 2012.

Global Financial Arrest

Anyone who thinks the Global Financial System is anything but in an agonal state is not of this world. The analogy to a patient in cardiac arrest, unresponsive to repeated cycles of adrenaline and defibrillation, is too tempting. Too appropriate. While the US remains the battered hero overall, the European Union is its heartbeat and money the vital circulation. And the patient has collapsed with no pulse.

Is there still a flicker of hope, or is a ‘flat-line’ imminent?

“Clear!…”