The Faber Report

The Domino Effect of Greece


It is no longer capturing the attention of most investors— even in the fixed income markets—but the continued widening in spreads of Greek debt instruments is creating a continued backdrop of fear in certain European markets.

Central to the Greek story is the concern that not only is the country unable to fund its budget deficit through unassisted sovereign borrowings, but that even with the help of the IMF it's far from clear that Greece will be able to steer clear from its fiscal troubles for an extended period of time.

While some fixed income investors view the IMF aid package as a savior, others tell me it feels more like a dip loan to a soon to be bankrupt entity—not making things better for existing holders, but worse.

The question now is when will the IMF money begin flowing and will it actually stop the flows away from Greece?

With short term rates at 8 percent, the yield curve basically flat, and the Greeks having said not long ago that borrowing even at 6 percent was not sustainable, the IMF money can't be far away, with more than $8 billion euros in maturities coming due in the next month.

Plus, the Greek 5-year CDS has hit an all time high. The spread to German bunds has once again blown out to levels that haven’t been seen. 

And this is now effecting other sovereign nations in the EU that don’t have their fiscal house in order, namely Portugal.

The fear is very simple: Portugal will face the same problems as Greece is dealing with.