What is truth?

Archive for the ‘Greece X world markets X Goldman Sachs X Wall Street X Gary D. Cohn X Europe's monetary union X Europe's deficit X American International Group X JPMorgan Chase X Italy X Greek mythology X c’ Category

Kaiser report 40

Max gives us his weekly lowdown on what‘s happening in the States and the Markets
You couldn’t make this stuff up!

Krise bedroht deutsche Staatsbanken

Griechen-Krise bedroht deutsche Staatsbanken

Von Anne Seith, Frankfurt am Main


 

HRE-Zentrale: Die Krisenbank gehört zu den großen Gläubigern Griechenlands

Die Idee klingt so einfach wie verlockend: Weil Banken mit griechischen Anleihen gezockt haben, sollen sie sich an der Rettung des Pleitelands beteiligen, verlangen viele Politiker. Eine Milchmädchenrechnung – denn betroffen wären vor allem Institute, die ganz oder teilweise dem Staat gehören.

Es ist mittlerweile ein natürlicher Reflex: Wenn es um die finanziellen Folgen der Finanzkrise geht, rufen Politiker nach der Beteiligung der Finanzbranche. So auch in Sachen Griechenland: Da ist mittlerweile manch ein Volksvertreter der Meinung, der Krisenstaat könne nur noch via Umschuldung gerettet werden. Das würde bedeuten: Griechenland einigt sich mit seinen Gläubigern darauf, nur einen Teil der Kredite zurückzuzahlen.

Eine Umschuldung fordert auch der CSU-Finanzexperte Hans Michelbach, der großspurig eine internationale Gläubigerkonferenz einberufen möchte. Und in diesem Zusammenhang natürlich auch erwähnt, dass die Finanzbranche bei der Rettung des hellenischen Schuldenstaats ihren Beitrag leisten müsse. Auch der nordrhein-westfälische CDU-Ministerpräsident Jürgen Rüttgers findet, es müsse genau geschaut werden, “wer die Zeche bezahlt”. Er will die Banken ebenfalls für Griechenland zur Kasse bitten. Ein Wunsch, den trotz der anstehenden Landtagswahl selbst SPD-Chef Frank-Walter Steinmeier unterstützt.

Die Botschaft der Politiker ist klar: Diejenigen, die sich mit griechischen Staatsanleihen verzockt haben, sollen nun auch die Kosten tragen.

Doch dem wohlklingenden Appell liegt zumindest teilweise eine Milchmädchenrechnung zugrunde. Denn in Deutschland haben nach jetzigem Kenntnisstand ausgerechnet die Banken viele Griechenland-Papiere in ihren Büchern, die dem Staat ganz oder teilweise gehören: Die Hypo Real Estate (HRE) und die Commerzbank.

Die HRE – die mittlerweile Deutsche Pfandbriefbank heißt und mit rund 100 Milliarden Euro gestützt wird – kam zum 31.12.2009 auf ein Volumen von 7,9 Milliarden Euro an griechischen Staatsbonds. Bei der Commerzbank sind es etwa drei Milliarden. Auch einige Landesbanken sind betroffen. Bei der BayernLB etwa sprechen Finanzkreise von einem Engagement in Höhe von 300 Millionen Euro.

“Euphemistische Beschreibung eines Bankrotts”

Bankenprofessor Hans-Peter Burghof warnt deshalb: Wenn etwa die HRE oder die Commerzbank große Summen abschreiben müssen, geraten sie in neue Finanzprobleme. “Dann kommt man um eine Kapitalerhöhung nicht herum. Und da die Banken dem Staat gehören, muss der das bezahlen.” Sprich: Die Verluste aus den Griechenland-Geschäften würden sozialisiert, so oder so. Bei der HRE würden, je nach Wertberichtigungsbedarf, womöglich sogar neue Hilfen in Milliardenhöhe fällig, warnt Konrad Becker, Analyst von Merck Finck. Es könnte für die Regierung “billiger sein, Griechenland direkt zu helfen.”

Auch sonst ist das Risiko einer Umschuldung – die Bankenprofessor Burghof als “euphemistische Beschreibung eines Staatsbankrotts” charakterisiert – schwer zu kalkulieren. Viele deutsche Geldinstitute geben sich reichlich verschlossen, was ihr genaues Engagement in Griechenland betrifft. Bei der Landesbank Baden-Württemberg will man sich zu einzelnen Posten des Portfolios generell nicht äußern, bei der Hessischen Landesbank spricht man von einem “äußerst geringen” Betrag im mittleren zweistelligen Millionenbereich.

Und die Zahlen, die man bekommt, stimmen nicht unbedingt optimistisch. Insgesamt, so heißt es bei der Bank für internationalen Zahlungsausgleich, schuldet Griechenland deutschen Geldinstituten rund 43 Milliarden Euro. Die Allianz erklärt, die gesamte Gruppe habe mit Stichtag 31. Dezember etwa 3,5 Milliarden Euro an griechischen Staatsanleihen in den Büchern. Bei der Münchner Rück waren es Ende 2009 rund 2,2 Milliarden Euro.

Märkte rechnen mit Umschuldung

Wie viel von diesen Summen nun unter Umständen tatsächlich bedroht ist, weiß niemand. Die EU-Kommission ist sogar noch immer davon überzeugt, dass eine Umschuldung erst gar nicht nötig sein wird. Das Spar- und Reformprogramm, das die EU Anfang Mai vorlegen will, werde die grassierende Unsicherheit beenden, sagte der Generaldirektor für Wirtschaft und Finanzen, Marco Buti. Und er versucht zu beruhigen: “Um es sehr klar zu sagen – es wird keine Schulden-Restrukturierung als Teil des Programms geben.”

Die Veröffentlichung des “sehr, sehr ernsthaften” und glaubwürdigen Programms werde an den Finanzmärkten Vertrauen schaffen und die Zinsaufschläge bei griechischen Staatsanleihen reduzieren, ist Buti überzeugt. Das Programm werde über einen Zeitraum von drei Jahren Einsparungen und tiefgreifende Strukturreformen vorsehen.

Bankenprofessor Burghof allerdings findet, eine Umschuldung wäre trotz aller Risiken “ehrlicher”. Dort wo das Risiko eingegangen wurde, würde es auch abgeschrieben: in den Büchern der Banken.

Auch an den Märkten gehen die Anleger inzwischen davon aus, dass Griechenland seine Kredite nicht ganz wird zurückzahlen können. Finanzwerte sackten am Dienstag weltweit in den Keller. Zur Verunsicherung trugen noch die Aussagen deutscher Regierungspolitiker bei, die Zweifel am vereinbarten Hilfspaket aufkommen ließen. “Das ist ein sehr gefährliches Spiel, das hier gespielt wird. Eigentlich preist der Markt inzwischen schon einen Ausfall Griechenlands ein – zumindest teilweise”, sagte LBBW-Volkswirt Jens-Oliver Niklasch. “Da spielt auch die Bundesregierung mit ihrer Taktiererei mit dem Feuer. Die Märkte warten ja nur auf das grüne Licht aus Berlin.”

Deutsche Bank: Wir haben mit Griechenland nichts zu tun

Zu den stärksten Verlierern im Dax gehörte absurderweise die Deutsche Bank. Die Aktien von Deutschlands größtem Geldhaus verloren zeitweise um fast fünf Prozent an Wert – dabei hatte der Konzern am Dienstag glänzende Quartalszahlen vorgelegt. Doch die Börsianer störten sich nicht nur an einem ausgesprochen zurückhaltenden Ausblick von Finanzchef Stefan Krause – auch die Belastung durch die Übernahme von Sal. Oppenheim sorgt die Finanzexperten.

Denn durch die erstmalige Einbeziehung der Kölner Privatbank schmolz die Kernkapitalquote von Dezember bis Ende März von 12,6 auf 11,2 Prozent. Damit liege die Deutsche Bank am unteren Ende im Vergleich zu ihren Wettbewerbern, kritisierte Unicredit-Analyst Stefan Stalmann. Börsianer machen sich daher Sorgen, ob die Bank nicht doch mehr Kapital braucht.

Immerhin: In der Debatte um eine mögliche Griechenland-Pleite kann sich Deutsche-Bank-Chef Josef Ackermann, der sonst oft als Vorzeige-Buhmann der Bankenbranche herhalten muss, entspannt zurücklehnen. Sein Haus hat nach eigenen Aussagen mit der ganzen Sache wenig zu tun.

Natürlich sagen auch die Deutsch-Banker nicht genau, was in ihren Büchern an griechischen Anleihen steht. Aber auf Nachfrage in einem Analysten-Call konnte Finanzchef Stefan Krause zwei beruhigende Nachrichten in die Welt setzen. “Very limited”, sehr begrenzt, sei das Engagement des Hauses in Griechenland. “Wir sind nicht beunruhigt.”

Keiser report No.19

If you want to really know what is going on then look at this video
covered in the video is Gold, IMF, UK deficit, George Soros, and many more stories

Is the Irish government involved in these kind of financial tools and were there advised by Goldman sacks?

Can they categorically state on the floor of the Dail that they have no exposure to any of these kinds of toxic synthetic financial tools?

Can they categorically state that none of the Irish financial instustions have any of these derivatives on their books and if they so state then why are they looking for traders in these kinds of derivatives at NAMA

see link http://thepressnet.com/2010/01/16/irish-banks-derivative-trading-losses/

It is my belief that not only are the banks up to their tonsils in these derivatives and are hiding huge losses, the Government are actively concealing such losses from the General public.

we may even be in the same situation as Greece ,because the government will not come out and deny that they have not used the services of Goldman Sacks in the setting up of such derivatives.

Pirates Of The ‘Carry-On-Regardless’

Posted by jayfromeire on Mar 25th, 2010 and filed under Economic Crisis, International. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry from your site


William K. Black wrote a book in 2005 titled “The Best Way to Rob a Bank is to Own One” where he outlined the fraud and corruption at the highest levels of international banking.                   

What we are seeing now in the light of massive bonuses, involving billions of Euro, Dollars and Pounds, being handed out to executives and lower level employees, is simply the same culture of fraud and corruption which has seeped down to the lower levels of an industry which has utterly disregarded any pretence of moral conscience.       

           
 

This industry has deliberately plunged the world and the majority of ordinary people into a period of extreme doubts and anxieties over the future of themselves, their children and future generations.        

The climate of greed in this industry has undeniably never changed. Whilst the international bankers have absconded with the wealth of nations, their cronies in subsidiary banks, where ordinary people’s financial security is crucial, are now doing the same. These lower level parasites continue to coerce governments into passing legislation, in Ireland’s case, NAMA – (Never Any Money Again).                   

This is happening across the developed world and allows governments, without the consent of its citizens, to literally tax working people to pay for the illegal and corrupt practices of a criminal cabal responsible for the state of the world today.                    

This is piracy of the highest order, and the ordinary people paying for this, for generations to come, will be born into a financial bondage to the coming world state which amounts to nothing less than SLAVERY.               

We are being financially raped by the banking elite who simply demand that our government pass the very legislation which will condemn the citizens to a future of indentured servitude. We, the taxpayers, will have to cough up our last cent to the parasites of finance to furnish their lavish lifestyles of champagne parties and fancy yachts, whilst we are left struggling to make ends meet.                 

The government tells us we need to get through this current financial crisis together, by pulling together don’t you know, whilst they maintain their positions of power over us and live the highlife with their banker and building developer buddies. They don’t take responsibility for, or account to the public for, the catastrophe they’ve inflicted on families and businesses in this country. At the same time they try to justify their uselessness and inflated salaries, presumably in line with their inflated egos and ludicrous self belief in their value to society, whilst at the same time maintaining their massive expense accounts and lavish pension arrangements which nobody else in the country is entitled to.

machholz responce 

Careful what you ask for!

With the cries of change the government getting louder, I caution and ask the question will we be any better off?

Make no mistake I want to have a change of government and I want to jail All the corrupt Basta***

Responsible for the mess we are now in.

What exactly will the new government do about the political gangsters responsible for the mess we are now in?

see posting

Tell the people the truth about the Markets & NAMA

Do you really want to know what is really going on in the market place?
Ever heard of the “Rigged Market capitalists system”
Are you ready for this news??
Ernst & Young auditors of Anglo Irish Bank now working for NAMA ,
The same auditors for Lehman Brothers .
This is criminal , allowing this to go on, they should all be in Jail !
We must have a new Irish people’s political party that will stop this fraud in its tracks.
A political party that will prosecute all the individuals responsible for this criminal conspiracy
They must be brought to justice
We the people must have our pound of flesh!

Wall St. Helped to Mask Debt Fuelling Europe’s Crisis

As worries over Greece rattle world markets, records and interviews show that with Wall Street’s help, the nation engaged in a decade-long effort to skirt European debt limits. One deal created by Goldman Sachs helped obscure billions in debt from the budget overseers in Brussels.

Even as the crisis was nearing the flashpoint, banks were searching for ways to help Greece forestall the day of reckoning. In early November — three months before Athens became the epicenter of global financial anxiety — a team from Goldman Sachs arrived in the ancient city with a very modern proposition for a government struggling to pay its bills, according to two people who were briefed on the meeting.

The bankers, led by Goldman’s president, Gary D. Cohn, held out a financing instrument that would have pushed debt from Greece’s health care system far into the future, much as when strapped homeowners take out second mortgages to pay off their credit cards.

It had worked before. In 2001, just after Greece was admitted to Europe’s monetary union, Goldman helped the government quietly borrow billions, people familiar with the transaction said. That deal, hidden from public view because it was treated as a currency trade rather than a loan, helped Athens to meet Europe’s deficit rules while continuing to spend beyond its means.

Athens did not pursue the latest Goldman proposal, but with Greece groaning under the weight of its debts and with its richer neighbors vowing to come to its aid, the deals over the last decade are raising questions about Wall Street’s role in the world’s latest financial drama.

As in the American subprime crisis and the implosion of the American International Group, financial derivatives played a role in the run-up of Greek debt. Instruments developed by Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase and a wide range of other banks enabled politicians to mask additional borrowing in Greece, Italy and possibly elsewhere.

In dozens of deals across the Continent, banks provided cash upfront in return for government payments in the future, with those liabilities then left off the books. Greece, for example, traded away the rights to airport fees and lottery proceeds in years to come.

Critics say that such deals, because they are not recorded as loans, mislead investors and regulators about the depth of a country’s liabilities.

Some of the Greek deals were named after figures in Greek mythology. One of them, for instance, was called Aeolos, after the god of the winds.

The crisis in Greece poses the most significant challenge yet to Europe’s common currency, the euro, and the Continent’s goal of economic unity. The country is, in the argot of banking, too big to be allowed to fail. Greece owes the world $300 billion, and major banks are on the hook for much of that debt. A default would reverberate around the globe.

A spokeswoman for the Greek finance ministry said the government had met with many banks in recent months and had not committed to any bank’s offers. All debt financings “are conducted in an effort of transparency,” she said. Goldman and JPMorgan declined to comment.

While Wall Street’s handiwork in Europe has received little attention on this side of the Atlantic, it has been sharply criticized in Greece and in magazines like Der Spiegel in Germany.

“Politicians want to pass the ball forward, and if a banker can show them a way to pass a problem to the future, they will fall for it,” said Gikas A. Hardouvelis, an economist and former government official who helped write a recent report on Greece’s accounting policies.

Wall Street did not create Europe’s debt problem. But bankers enabled Greece and others to borrow beyond their means, in deals that were perfectly legal. Few rules govern how nations can borrow the money they need for expenses like the military and health care. The market for sovereign debt — the Wall Street term for loans to governments — is as unfettered as it is vast.

“If a government wants to cheat, it can cheat,” said Garry Schinasi, a veteran of the International Monetary Fund’s capital markets surveillance unit, which monitors vulnerability in global capital markets.

Banks eagerly exploited what was, for them, a highly lucrative symbiosis with free-spending governments. While Greece did not take advantage of Goldman’s proposal in November 2009, it had paid the bank about $300 million in fees for arranging the 2001 transaction, according to several bankers familiar with the deal.

Such derivatives, which are not openly documented or disclosed, add to the uncertainty over how deep the troubles go in Greece and which other governments might have used similar off-balance sheet accounting.

The tide of fear is now washing over other economically troubled countries on the periphery of Europe, making it more expensive for Italy, Spain and Portugal to borrow.

For all the benefits of uniting Europe with one currency, the birth of the euro came with an original sin: countries like Italy and Greece entered the monetary union with bigger deficits than the ones permitted under the treaty that created the currency. Rather than raise taxes or reduce spending, however, these governments artificially reduced their deficits with derivatives.

Derivatives do not have to be sinister. The 2001 transaction involved a type of derivative known as a swap. One such instrument, called an interest-rate swap, can help companies and countries cope with swings in their borrowing costs by exchanging fixed-rate payments for floating-rate ones, or vice versa. Another kind, a currency swap, can minimize the impact of volatile foreign exchange rates.

But with the help of JPMorgan, Italy was able to do more than that. Despite persistently high deficits, a 1996 derivative helped bring Italy’s budget into line by swapping currency with JPMorgan at a favorable exchange rate, effectively putting more money in the government’s hands. In return, Italy committed to future payments that were not booked as liabilities.

“Derivatives are a very useful instrument,” said Gustavo Piga, an economics professor who wrote a report for the Council on Foreign Relations on the Italian transaction. “They just become bad if they’re used to window-dress accounts.”

In Greece, the financial wizardry went even further. In what amounted to a garage sale on a national scale, Greek officials essentially mortgaged the country’s airports and highways to raise much-needed money.

Aeolos, a legal entity created in 2001, helped Greece reduce the debt on its balance sheet that year. As part of the deal, Greece got cash upfront in return for pledging future landing fees at the country’s airports. A similar deal in 2000 called Ariadne devoured the revenue that the government collected from its national lottery. Greece, however, classified those transactions as sales, not loans, despite doubts by many critics.

These kinds of deals have been controversial within government circles for years. As far back as 2000, European finance ministers fiercely debated whether derivative deals used for creative accounting should be disclosed.

The answer was no. But in 2002, accounting disclosure was required for many entities like Aeolos and Ariadne that did not appear on nations’ balance sheets, prompting governments to restate such deals as loans rather than sales.

Still, as recently as 2008, Eurostat, the European Union‘s statistics agency, reported that “in a number of instances, the observed securitization operations seem to have been purportedly designed to achieve a given accounting result, irrespective of the economic merit of the operation.”

While such accounting gimmicks may be beneficial in the short run, over time they can prove disastrous.

George Alogoskoufis, who became Greece’s finance minister in a political party shift after the Goldman deal, criticized the transaction in the Parliament in 2005. The deal, Mr. Alogoskoufis argued, would saddle the government with big payments to Goldman until 2019.

Mr. Alogoskoufis, who stepped down a year ago, said in an e-mail message last week that Goldman later agreed to reconfigure the deal “to restore its good will with the republic.” He said the new design was better for Greece than the old one.

In 2005, Goldman sold the interest rate swap to the National Bank of Greece, the country’s largest bank, according to two people briefed on the transaction.

In 2008, Goldman helped the bank put the swap into a legal entity called Titlos. But the bank retained the bonds that Titlos issued, according to Dealogic, a financial research firm, for use as collateral to borrow even more from the European Central Bank.

Edward Manchester, a senior vice president at the Moody’s credit rating agency, said the deal would ultimately be a money-loser for Greece because of its long-term payment obligations.

Referring to the Titlos swap with the government of Greece, he said: “This swap is always going to be unprofitable for the Greek government.”

source  http://www.nytimes.com/2010/02/14/business/global/14debt.html?pagewanted=2

Tag Cloud