Rollercoaster In The Eurozone


For the past year, all eyes have been on Europe. The massive bailouts and inability of the consortium of countries to embrace their monetary printing press may ultimately lead to the downfall of the European Union. The impact of this would be massive and the markets are already showing signs of weakness in the face of Europe’s problems.

Calls for a market correction have been gaining in popularity in the last month as analysts have felt the U.S. was overdue for some sort of pullback. Two catalysts this week have forced stocks down and volume up. The first is the loss of Nicolas Sarkozy as the president of France. President-elect Francois Hollande wants to spend more in the name of creating jobs and is largely against austerity. With a country as important and critical as France turning into what is essentially Greece, investors are losing their cool and faith.

The other issue at hand is that of Greece. Rumors that look to becoming increasingly true include the notion that Greece will exit the EU this year and will revert back to the drachma. The current government will most likely reject the terms associated with its next bailout. Despite the turmoil in Europe, some people remain optimistic.

“[Europe] will probably hang together,” said one employee of a European exchange. “The alternative is too difficult for people to think about. People prefer to hang together. The countries will need to implement proper labor market reforms. When the cycle turns, which it eventually will, they’ll potentially reap some nice growth.”

The realization that companies both private and public are unwilling to hire more employees has yet to hit the citizens of Greece and elsewhere. A reformed, more streamlined labor market is needed in combination with a reduction of debt in order for anything of real value to occur. But until a clear cut decision is made on the future of Europe, traders will wait to make their next big move.

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