The Week Ahead

I think the financial markets will again be hooked on to the European issues next week. Greece, Ireland and Portugal are in really bad shape and it is looking more and more likely that they may have to default on their debt. These countries are pretty small so an economic slowdown in these countries is not going to matter much to the global economy. The real issue will be how does the debt default affect the European financial system. Many banks in bigger European countries have a large exposure to the debt of these countries. It is not clear whether they have already written down this debt or not.

Cliff Wachtel who writes about forex on seeking alpha has a very good coverage of the European issues and what to look for in the week ahead.

Cliff Wachtel Article

One important indicator to watch to get a feel of how things are progressing in Europe is to look at the govt debt yields for the European countries in trouble. Here are links to quotes for some of the government bond yields for these European countries

Greek 2 year bond

Ireland 10 year bond

Portugal 10 year bond

Italy 10 year bond

Spain 10 year bond

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