Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Euro bank shares fall below book value

Exposure to Greek bond losses very costly

The economic cost is, in many ways, the least of the concerns investors should have about a break-up. Fragmentation of the Euro would incur political costs. Europe's "soft power" influence internationally would cease (as the concept of "Europe" as an integrated polity becomes meaningless). It is also worth observing that almost no modern fiat currency monetary unions have broken up without some form of authoritarian or military government, or civil war. - UBS Bank

The mortgage derivative mess and Greece's central bank failure has reverberated to the financial capitals of the old world.

Banking houses such as Dexia, Belgium's largest bank, wrote down Greek debt by as much as 21%. Dexia lost 338 million euros. Their shares are now trading at below book value following the August vaction period and a return to business as usual.

UniCredit, the Italian bellwether, fell 4.5% on news to less that $0.80. The Swiss bank UBS and Deutsche Bank issued strong statements saying that dissolution of the European Union would be more costly than it's worth and would likely lead to war and military takeovers.

In a report titled, "Euro Break Up - The Consequences." UBS describes the situation this way. "Under the current structure and with the current membership, the Euro does not work. Either the current structure will have to change, or the current membership will have to change."

The problem is one of great delicacy, according to the report's authors. Quite simply, such changes never take place “without some form of authoritarian or military government, or civil war.”

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