Market enthusiasm over the Spanish bank bailout did not last even a day.
After strong Asian trading seemed to roll on to Europe on Monday morning and then to the United States, by afternoon most European indexes were flat and Wall Street closed the session decidedly down.
ONE bright spot in the lusterless recovery that started in 2009 has been the performance of the private sector.
In the rebound’s early stages, business investment was the driving force. And, last year, corporate earnings hit their stride — so much so that investors began to view corporate America, not consumers, as the linchpin keeping the economy spinning.
But that attitude may soon be changing.
Financial Times: Asian crisis: 10 lessons for Europe
There has long been talk that Japan’s collapse in the late 1990s can help us interpret what the west is going through today,particularly from the likes of Richard Koo of Nomura. There has even been talk that Japan’s performance since should be reinterpreted as a model of what Europe should aim for.
But CLSA, the Hong Kong based brokerage, reckons that the South-East Asian crisis of 1997-98 is a better guide to what Europe faces. Eric Fishwick, its head of economics research, has come up with ten Asian lessons for Europe’s crisis.
The Motley Fool: The Looming Lost Decade
Three years ago, TheWall Street Journalwrote that unemployment will likely “remain above prerecession levels through 2019.”
That couldn’t be right, I thought. 2019 would be 12 years after the recession began — longer than it took for employment to recover after the Great Depression. Surely they meant 2010, maybe 2012. I emailed the article’s author asking whether the 2019 reference was a mistake.
“Believe it or not, 2019 is correct,” he replied. “Sorry to be the bearer of that fact.”
This was my first blunt-force realization of how extreme our jobs crisis is.
The Motley Fool: 4 Ways to Invest Through the Noise and Win
Investors are getting nervous as volatility in the stock market has picked up immensely in the past month. Everywhere you turn, you’ll find a host of possible explanations for everything that’s going on, along with advice for how you should respond to it. But when the next crisis could be just a day away — with a brand-new set of different recommendations to follow in light of it — it’s increasingly difficult for long-term investors to stay on track.
Seeking Alpha: How To Play Brazil In 2012
Brazilian stocks have been hit harder than other markets in Latin America, save for the obvious fallout in Argentina.
The Bovespa index is down 8.3% since the beginning of the year and 13.0% in the month of May. Only the loss in the Brazilian currency – falling by more than 15% from quarter highs, has overshadowed the weakness in Brazilian stocks. The pace of decline in the Brazilian real has caused the central bank to rethink its pace of rate cuts for fear that a depreciated currency will import inflation later in the year.
Seeking Alpha: It’s Time To Invest, Not Panic
In my nearly 30 years of investing, I’ve noted that when the market becomes volatile, a chorus goes up that we must “trade” stocks. “Investing” has become a sucker’s bet. In virtually every case, this thinking has proven nearly impossible to execute successfully. Even worse, it tends to damage the portfolios of small investors disproportionately.
Given the backdrop of the ongoing EU debt crisis, gridlock in Washington, and a potential “hard landing” for China’s economy, we are beginning to hear the chorus once again. Therefore, I am writing this article, especially to other small investors, in response to the multitude of narratives focusing upon the dire straits for U.S. equities; all voiced at 100 decibels.
It is now time to invest, not to panic.
MarketWatch: No-pain investors miss out on gains
If you want to see how twisted the investment world is right now, consider that many investors — both individuals and institutions — are accepting reward-free risk.
Normally, the search is for risk-free reward — return investors can get without putting their money in harm’s way.
Dig into the theories and conjecture about the deeper meaning of Facebook’s embarrassing performance after the initial public offering, and you can gain insight into the market and investor behavior. Chuck Jaffe reports on Markets Hub. Photo: Reuters.
The difference: People are willing to settle for nothing on their cash, so long as they can be confident they will get their money back.
MarketWatch: U.S. debt load falling at fastest pace since 1950s
Everyone knows America has too much debt. What they don’t know is that things are getting better, not worse.
Little by little, our economy is reducing its debt burden, slowly repairing the damage caused by 10, 20 or 30 years of excess.
If you want to know why economic growth has been so tepid, here’s your answer. Four years after the storm hit, the economy is still deleveraging. And it’s very hard for any economy to grow when everyone is focused on increasing their savings.
CNN Money: Household net worth jumps $2.8 trillion
Feeling richer in 2012? According to the Federal Reserve you are.
The net worth of households rose a collective $2.8 trillion in the first three months of 2012. That was the largest quarterly rise in household wealth since the beginning of the financial crisis, and roughly equates to an increase of $9,000 per American. Still, we have another four trillion to go before we regain what we lost in the financial crisis. Collectively, American households are worth just under $63 trillion, down from $67 trillion back in 2007, which was a peak. And while assets popped, debt was only down slightly.