Industry NewsMarkets & Economy

Europe’s situation is precarious and deteriorating

Future-Proof: Navigate Threats, Seize Opportunities at ICNY 2018 | Jan 22-26 at the Marriott Marquis, Times Square, New York

Long-term rates, the 10-year T-note and mortgages are approaching their 2013 lows because of Cyprus -- which could disappear in a volcanic explosion (as did nearby Thera) and do no particular harm to the global economy. New U.S. data is all housing, and debatable, although optimistic voices drown all others. The builder-opinion index (NAHB) actually fell a few points in March. Rising measures of prices are distorted by the drop in distressed sales and rise in normal ones. There is no question that housing has now turned upward, but Morgan Stanley's caution is dead on: "The uptrend is likely to be shallow... credit is still hard to get." Buried in the Cyprus story is one terribly important matter, but it's deep down. The news on the surface has been mangled all week long: Those mean Germans want to skin Cypriot depositors before giving aid to Cypriot banks, and the precedent means trouble for any other Europeans sporting a tan. Upon excavation, it seems that Cypriot bank deposi...