"[the EMU] was told too that currency unions do not eliminate risk: they merely switch it from currency risk to default risk. For that reason it was all the more important to have a workable mechanism for sovereign defaults and bondholder haircuts in place from the beginning, with clear rules to establish the proper pricing of that risk. But no, the EU masters would hear none of it. There could be no defaults, and no preparations were made or even permitted for such an entirely predictable outcome..."
"A sovereign debt crisis will naturally affect equities. Banks hold their governments’ bonds on the assumption they are virtually risk-free. Any change to that assumption could drastically worsen their financial position. A devaluation to the currency would reduce the value of companies’ domestic earnings to foreign investors and make it harder for them to finance foreign debt.
But it is startling to see the extent of the pain that international stock markets think eurozone-based companies must endure. According to MSCI indices, developed world stocks outside the eurozone are up 7.22 per cent. European stocks outside the eurozone are up 4.45 per cent. And yet eurozone stocks themselves are down 9.82 per cent. Even within the eurozone, there is a stark division. Germany’s stocks are up a decent 4.4 per cent, according to MSCI. All the zone’s other big markets are down terribly. It is not surprising that Spain or Greece are down – but note that France has fallen 8.5 per cent and Italy 19 per cent. This implies extreme bearishness about the prospects for everyone in the eurozone, bar Germany."
"In a bleak assessment, entitled "quantifying the unthinkable", they warn that in the first year alone, so by the start of 2012, output would fall between 5% and 9% across various member states, while their new national currencies would fall by 50%....
On the basis of a euro break-up by the end of 2010, he warned: "In 2011 a deep recession across the eurozone emerges, dragging down the global economy. In the eurozone output falls range from -4% in Germany to -9% in Greece".
But he notes neighbouring European economies are also caught up in the chill, with GDP falling 3% in the UK and 5% in central and eastern Europe.
"While the US would be less adversely affected, the combination of lower global growth and a strongly appreciating US dollar would see it flirting with outright recession in 2011," Cliffe added."