Europe’s Banks Begin to Fail

Guess who did eventually bail out Greece.

An article from 2011 with lessons to learn from for today:

 

A chain reaction is set in motion—and a lot of people are going to get hurt.

The date is May 11, 1931. Creditanstalt, a little-known Austrian bank, suddenly announces it can’t make its debt payments. An unstoppable chain reaction results.

Bank failure, stock market crash, mass business closures, 25 percent unemployment, trade wars, runaway inflation, multiple currency collapses, the Great Depression, World War ii. All of it began with a little-known bank in a small country in the heart of Europe.

That is history. And it is happening again.

A similar epoch-changing event may be about to occur in Europe.

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Central Banker Urges Lying To The Public About Bank Health

For years, many – and certainly this website – had mocked both European and US stress tests as futile exercises in boosting investor and public confidence, which instead of being taken seriously repeatedly failed to highlight failing banks such as Dexia, Bankia and all the Greek banks, in the process rendering the exercise a total farce. The implication of course, is that regulators, thus central bankers, openly lied to the public over and over just to preserve what little confidence in the system has left.

Now we know that far from merely another “conspiracy theory”, this is precisely the policy intent behind the “stress tests” – as Reuters reports citing a paper co-authored by a Bundesbank economist, “banking supervisors should withhold some information when they publish stress test results to prevent both bank runs and excessive risk taking by lenders.”

In other words: lie. Continue reading