In Europe We Trust?

By |2017-09-27T11:29:21+00:00September 26th, 2017|Categories: Global Market Update|Tags: , , , |

Why didn’t Europe fall apart? Horace Vernet, “The Battle of the Barricades.” Public Domain. Source: Wikipedia In 1848, revolution swept across Europe. Governments fell in Italy, France, Germany, Denmark, Hungary, Poland, and elsewhere. In all, over 50 countries were affected. The uprisings were led by shaky ad hoc coalitions of reformers, intellectuals, and workers, which didn’t hold together for very long. They were often violently put down, but resulted in lasting social changes, even if the political [...]

European Futures

By |2017-03-13T09:25:13+00:00March 13th, 2017|Categories: Global Market Update|Tags: , , , , |

Where is Europe going? Source: Wikipedia An old joke from the ‘90s stated that the most boring headline of the time was, “Whither NATO: Canadian Proposal has Merit.” Europe has been struggling with its identity for as long as I can remember. During the Cold War, it was at the center of the ideological struggle between communism and democratic capitalism; since then it has tried to define itself economically, politically, and culturally. Is Europe simply an accident [...]

Euro Futures

By |2016-11-17T15:49:59+00:00May 26th, 2016|Categories: Global Market Update|Tags: , , |

Is the Eurozone dying? Photo: Dave Meier. Source: Picography It’s certainly facing tough times. Economically moribund, most Euro government bonds carry negative interest rates. Countries on the economic periphery still face crushing debt service. Unemployment remains above 10% -- the same level it was shortly after the Great Recession. And soon Britain will vote to leave the EU. Who can blame them? Who wants to tie their economic future to a 20-ton anchor? But bad as things [...]

Alpine Meadows

By |2016-11-17T15:50:17+00:00May 24th, 2016|Categories: Global Market Update|Tags: , , , |

What comes to mind when you think of the Alps? Photo: Kevin Connors. Source: Morguefile Maybe it’s clear mountain lakes and crystal blue skies. Maybe it’s sun and snow and skiing. Or maybe it’s money? A map of Europe scaled by per-capita GDP reveals an interesting tendency: the areas with the most mountainous topography tend to have higher incomes. Northern Italy, western Austria, southern Germany, and Switzerland are all significantly richer than other regions. This holds true [...]

Rising Dollar, Rising Markets?

By |2016-11-17T16:23:46+00:00March 17th, 2015|Categories: Global Market Update|Tags: , , , |

Image Source: Digital Juice What does a strong dollar mean for the rest of the world? Over the past six months the trade-weighted dollar has risen 25%. A strengthening labor market here, monetary stimulus by the Bank of Japan, Q€ in Europe, falling oil prices in Canada, and a slowdown in China have depressed those currencies relative to ours. A strong dollar has lifted the prospects of both Europe and Japan. Those export-oriented economies can expect higher profit [...]

Germany Uber Alles?

By |2016-11-17T16:24:00+00:00March 16th, 2015|Categories: Global Market Update|Tags: , , , |

Image Source: National Geographic The German stock market is making new highs. But what is Germany, really? For many people, Germany calls up images of the Bavarian castles or the Rhine. For others it’s Oktoberfest and lederhosen, or the Autobahn, or cathedrals. Still others get their images from old war movies. For me, Germany has always meant business. Sited between the low countries and the Alps, between the Western democracies and an autocratic East, Germany has been [...]

European Blues

By |2016-11-17T16:30:49+00:00January 6th, 2015|Categories: Global Market Update|Tags: , , |

What happened to Europe last year? 2014 was supposed to be the year the Euro left its debt problems behind. It was supposed to be the year the credit crisis countries proved that they can balance their budgets. It was supposed to be the year for growth to take off. What happened? […]

Fast and Slow

By |2016-11-17T16:35:19+00:00October 30th, 2014|Categories: Global Market Update|Tags: , , , |

Why is US growth faster than Europe? In 2008 and 2009, the global economy collapsed, brought down by a credit crunch that started in here but quickly spread around the world. Since then, the US economy, while weak, is moving back towards normal. Europe, on the other hand, looks like it’s about to enter its third recession in six years. Why the difference? […]

Righting the Ship (Part 3)

By |2016-11-17T16:56:05+00:00June 26th, 2013|Categories: Global Market Update|Tags: , , |

What do we mean when we talk about investors’ rights?Investor rights are non-negotiable. They’re the principles that should undergird financial industry practices and securities laws. What’s legal isn’t just the minimum standard necessary. In many cases it’s totally inadequate to the task of safeguarding investors’ interests. […]