Thursday, May 10, 2012

Relief Rally Provides Little Comfort as Europe's Woes Weigh

Rick Santelli, one of the very few talking heads on CNBC who delivers honesty more often than not, said this morning that ignoring Europe is usually a big mistake.

Apparently, some of the computers and traders were taking notes, because today's highly-anticipated relief rally delivered less relief than angst to a market that seemingly wants to go nowhere but lower.

Stocks traded higher through most of the session, but, in classic bear market fashion, gave up their gains late in the day. While there was little more than whispers from across the Atlantic, the tone was dire, with Greece and now, Spain, topping the list of countries seeking to escape the clutches of an intractable currency clutch.

The general gist of the the thinking is that when - no longer "if" - Greece departs from the 17 nations who use the Euro as a common currency, Spain will likely follow, and then the others fall like dominoes: Italy, Portugal, Belgium, Ireland, in a disordered departure from a failed fiat folly.

It is testament to the frailty of centralized government planning that the Euro experiment will have lasted less than 20 years before the nations of Europe finally bite the nationalist bullet and return to their various sovereign currencies, like the lira, drachma, peseta, and various forms of francs, et. al. Current analysis has Greece departing within a year, followed in quick order by at least five other nations.

There will be opposition, and the usual courses of anxiety and cries of imminent depression, but, as it has in the past, Europe will return to nationalism, as quaint as that may be, and independence from an additional layer of government it never needed in the first place. Time will tell how it all turns out, though the final result is probably going to be a better condition for everyone from where things stand today.

Dow 12,855.04, +19.98 (0.16%)
NASDAQ 2,933.64, -1.07 (0.04%)
S&P 500 1,357.99, +3.41 (0.25%)
NYSE Composite 7,852.72, +32.46 (0.42%)
NASDAQ Volume 1,915,262,500
NYSE Volume 3,598,696,000
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ Advance - Decline: 3398-2161
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ New highs - New lows: 139-73
WTI crude oil: 97.08. +0.27
Gold: 1,595.50, +1.30
Silver: 29.18, -0.06

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