CNBC Stock Blog

Art Cashin: Markets Still Fear Sovereign Risk


Stocks teetered in a narrow range on Tuesday. Analysts expect markets to be volatile the next two days as investors usually take part in "window dressing" — trades intended to boost returns on reports sent to shareholders — at the end of a quarter. Art Cashin, director of floor operations at UBS Financial Services, shared his market insights.

Checking Market Pulse

"I think everyone’s been hoping for some end-of-quarter window dressing to move things up," said Cashin.

"But the way things are acting right now, this is more like window washing — we’re not really getting anywhere."

In the meantime, Cashin said sovereign risk problems may be back on the table. Greece has been struggling to handle a 300 billion euro debt pile and has agreed to austerity measures to reduce its deficit to 8.7 percent of GDP this year, from 12.7 percent in 2009.

“I think it will put it back on the menu more clearly when they begin to move to the austerity program,” he said. “What happens in the streets of Athens may fixate everybody on this.”

“It’s why today, we had better economic numbers than everybody thought—and yet the market has no response to it because that fear is still out there,” he explained.

  • Watch Cashin's Previous Appearance on CNBC (Mar. 29, 2010)

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No immediate information was available for Cashin or his firm.