Thursday, August 6, 2009

Europe is so predictable!

The BOE and the ECB kept its rates steady today. Most likely in sync with inflationary expectations held by Bernanke over at the US Fed. This seems like coordinated international cooperation, indeed. Perhaps the only form we will see at this time...well, maybe the only type we really need or want, considering how competitive these three jurisdictions are.

The BOE is also expanding their Asset Purchase program, from 50 billion pounds to 175 billion pounds. I would like to see under what premise are they expanding this program and still have the nerve to keep rates as they are. They have added a provisional note to their notice, but this note only explains how they are going to do what they are doing and not enough of what is the reason behind it?

Well, the reason given is that bank's balance sheets still need repairing and they want to take off as many bad debt as they can from private banks, so that they can lend again. I am wondering however, if this is just for mortgage backed securities or has the BOE made a general sweep on what would be determined bad debt and given banks a free pass to clear their sheets--with an ongoing economic crisis, where not on mortgage related debt's are delinquent, but even regular consumer loans as well?

We need more clarification. The ECB is another issue and I am not quite sure what their policy is directed to. They have a bigger market and, perhaps, they are shotting in the dark. We will only have to wait and see.

The economy in the UK and the Euro-zone is in still a pretty sad state. The rates are pretty low at 1.5% for the BOE and 1% for the ECB. There has been no sign of uncontrollable inflation or inflation at all....housing is still weak and the construction sector, is still hampered by a lower than usual commercial real estate market.
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