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By sancho panza
A decade after the last EM crisis,it looks we're about to have another.The humble Greenback takes centre stage.
The last sentence below is the one that worries most for the UK and Sterling holders.
My thanks obviously to Wolf as I've lifted all the links from the last 7 days of his work.Great site.
Mexico launches the 2000 Peso note
'which begs the question: why the sudden need for an even higher denomination note? The most likely answer? To keep up with inflation.
In the last 10 years the Mexican currency has lost much of its value despite the fact that inflation during that time has been relatively tame by Mexican standards! The accumulated inflation rate of the last 10 years of so-called “moderate” inflation is 51%. The result has been a 34% fall in purchasing power.'
Spainish banks exposure to South American and Turkish debt crisis
'In the case of Turkey’s financial system, Spanish banks had total exposure of $82.3 billion in the first quarter of 2018, according to the Bank for International Settlements. That’s more than the combined exposure of lenders from the next three most exposed economies, France, the USA, and the UK, which reached $75 billion in the same period.
According to BIS statistics, Spanish banks’ exposure to Turkey’s economy almost quadrupled between 2015 and 2018, largely on the back of Spain’s second largest bank BBVA’s madcap purchase of roughly half of Turkey’s third largest lender, Turkiye Garanti Bankasi. Since buying its first chunk of the bank from the Turkish group Dogus and General Electric in 2010, BBVA has lost over 75% of its investment under the combined influence of Garanti’s plummeting shares and Turkey’s plunging currency.
But the biggest fear, as expressed by the ECB on August 10, is that Turkish borrowers might not be hedged against the lira’s weakness and begin to default en masse on foreign currency loans, which account for a staggering 40% of the Turkish banking sector’s assets.
In Brazil Spanish banks have total exposure to the economy of $167 billion, according to BIS data. That’s the equivalent of 44.6% of total foreign banking investments in the country. For Banco Santander, Brazil is by far its biggest market, accounting for 26% of its global operating profits, compared to just 16% for Spain.
Meanwhile, in Mexico Spanish banks have over $160 billion invested, which represents 42% of total foreign banking exposure. Once again, it’s BBVA that is doing the heavy lifting, through its subsidiary BBVA Bancomer, the largest bank in Mexico. It provided 45% of BBVA’s group profits in the first half of 2018.
This pattern of exposure to emerging-market risk is replicated across most Latin American economies. In Chile Spanish banks account for 43% of total foreign bank-owned debt; in Colombia, it’s 32% and in Peru, it’s 40%.'
Turkey’s Debt & Currency Crisis Morphs into Financial Crisis as Banks Face Funding Squeeze
The more the lira falls against major foreign currencies such as the dollar and the euro, the more difficulties the banks will have funding their operations. According to Moody’s, a serious funding crisis could come sooner rather than later, given that in the next 12 months around $77 billion of foreign currency wholesale bonds and syndicated loans — equivalent to 41% of the total market funding — needs to be refinanced.
Over the past four months, the lira has plunged 40%.
Global bondholders are understandably concerned about this trend, especially given that it coincides, and is partly the result of, rising U.S. rates and a firming U.S dollar. These bondholders’ predictable response is to beg the IMF to step in and impose some semblance of order on Turkey’s economy, whose currency crisis has already turned into a debt crisis that is now dragging some rather large European banks through the mire.
What global bondholders ultimately want is for the IMF to lend Turkey money to bail out Turkey’s bondholders so as to put an end to the turmoil and torture in emerging markets bonds, which were selling like hotcakes just eight months ago. There’s one big problem with the plan, however: for the IMF to intervene in a country’s economy, it must first be invited to do so by that country’s respective government — and it usually attaches some unpalatable strings.
Yesterday the peso plunged 7%; and today as of midday in Buenos Aires, it has plunged over 17%. That brings the total plunge for the two days to 24%. It now takes 41.3 pesos to buy a dollar. Seen the other way around, a peso is now worth 2.4 cents (down from $1 in early 2002):
WTF happened? As soon as those IMF dollars started flowing a couple of months ago, the government – the central bank is under the Ministry of Finance and thus integral part of the government – started selling those dollars and buying pesos. But it was the only entity buying pesos, and those dollars were handed to the pesos sellers and thus wasted instead of being invested in the economy.
This is what a currency-and-debt crisis looks like: Argentina has $120 billion in dollar-denominated debt, a chunk of which comes due next year and needs to be paid off, and in order to pay off this debt, Argentina needs to be able to borrow more dollars. This was no problem last year, when it was even able to issue 100-year dollar bonds, but sheer insanity has left the building, and investors have opened their eyes.
This goes back to my old dictum: No one should ever lend dollars to Argentina, not even the IMF. This always ends the same way: in a default.
The thing is, a collapsing peso makes imports more expensive in peso terms, which pushes up inflation, which in turn helps crush the peso…. You get the idea.'
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