Best of the Week
Most Popular
1. 2019 From A Fourth Turning Perspective - James_Quinn
2.Beware the Young Stocks Bear Market! - Zeal_LLC
3.Safe Havens are Surging. What this Means for Stocks 2019 - Troy_Bombardia
4.Most Popular Financial Markets Analysis of 2018 - Trump and BrExit Chaos Dominate - Nadeem_Walayat
5.January 2019 Financial Markets Analysis and Forecasts - Nadeem_Walayat
6.Silver Price Trend Analysis 2019 - Nadeem_Walayat
7.Why 90% of Traders Lose - Nadeem_Walayat
8.What to do With Your Money in a Stocks Bear Market - Stephen_McBride
9.Stock Market What to Expect in the First 3~5 Months of 2019 - Chris_Vermeulen
10.China, Global Economy has Tipped over: The Surging Dollar and the Rallying Yen - FXCOT
Last 7 days
Next Recession: Finding A 48% Yield Amid The Ruins - 22nd Mar 19
Your Future Stock Returns Might Unpleasantly Surprise You - 22nd Mar 19
Fed Acknowledges “Recession Risks”. Run for the Hills! - 22nd Mar 19
Will Bridging Loans Grow in Demand and Usage in 2019? - 22nd Mar 19
Does Fed Know Something Gold Investors Do Not Know? - 21st Mar 19
Gold …Some Confirmations to Watch For - 21st Mar 19
UKIP No Longer About BrExit, Becomes BNP 2.0, Muslim Hate Party - 21st Mar 19
A Message to the Gold Bulls: Relying on the CoT Gives You A False Sense of Security - 20th Mar 19
The Secret to Funding a Green New Deal - 20th Mar 19
Vietnam, Part I: Colonialism and National Liberation - 20th Mar 19
Will the Fed Cut its Interest Rate Forecast, Pushing Gold Higher? - 20th Mar 19
Dow Jones Stock Market Topping Pattern - 20th Mar 19
Gold Stocks Outperform Gold but Not Stocks - 20th Mar 19
Here’s What You’re Not Hearing About the US - China Trade War - 20th Mar 19
US Overdosing on Debt - 19th Mar 19
Looking at the Economic Winter Season Ahead - 19th Mar 19
Will the Stock Market Crash Like 1937? - 19th Mar 19
Stock Market VIX Volaility Analysis - 19th Mar 19
FREE Access to Stock and Finanacial Markets Trading Analysis Worth $1229! - 19th Mar 19
US Stock Markets Price Anomaly Setup Continues - 19th Mar 19
Gold Price Confirmation of the Warning - 18th Mar 19
Split Stock Market Warning - 18th Mar 19
Stock Market Trend Analysis 2019 - Video - 18th Mar 19
Best Precious Metals Investment and Trades for 2019 - 18th Mar 19
Hurdles for Gold Stocks - 18th Mar 19
Pento: Coming QE & Low Rates Will Be ‘Rocket Fuel for Gold’ - 18th Mar 19
"This is for Tommy Robinson" Shouts Knife Wielding White Supremacist Terrorist in London - 18th Mar 19
This Is How You Create the Biggest Credit Bubble in History - 17th Mar 19
Crude Oil Bulls - For Whom the Bell Tolls - 17th Mar 19
Gold Mining Stocks Fundamentals - 17th Mar 19
Why Buy a Land Rover - Range Rover vs Huge Tree Branch Falling on its Roof - 17th Mar 19
UKIP Urged to Change Name to BNP 2.0 So BrExit Party Can Fight a 2nd EU Referendum - 17th Mar 19
Tommy Robinson Looks Set to Become New UKIP Leader - 16th Mar 19
Gold Final Warning: Here Are the Stunning Implications of Plunging Gold Price - 16th Mar 19
Towards the End of a Stocks Bull Market, Short term Timing Becomes Difficult - 16th Mar 19
UKIP Brexit Facebook Groups Reveling in the New Zealand Terror Attacks Blaming Muslim Victims - 16th Mar 19
Gold – US Dollar vs US Dollar Index - 16th Mar 19
Islamophobic Hate Preachers Tommy Robinson and Katie Hopkins have Killed UKIP and Brexit - 16th Mar 19
Countdown to The Precious Metals Gold and Silver Breakout Rally - 15th Mar 19
Shale Oil Splutters: Brent on Track for $70 Target $100 in 2020 - 15th Mar 19
Setting up a Business Just Got Easier - 15th Mar 19
Stock Market Elliott Wave Analysis Trend Forercast - Video - 15th Mar 19
Gold Warning - Here Are the Stunning Implications of Plunging Gold Price - Part 1 - 15th Mar 19
UK Weather SHOCK - Trees Dropping Branches onto Cars in Stormy Winds - Sheffield - 15th Mar 19
Best Time to Trade Forex - 15th Mar 19
Why the Green New Deal Will Send Uranium Price Through the Roof - 14th Mar 19
S&P 500's New Medium-Term High, but Will Stock Market Uptrend Continue? - 14th Mar 19
US Conservatism - 14th Mar 19
Gold in the Age of High-speed Electronic Trading - 14th Mar 19
Britain's Demographic Time Bomb Has Gone Off! - 14th Mar 19
Why Walmart Will Crush Amazon - 14th Mar 19
2019 Economic Predictions - 14th Mar 19
Tax Avoidance Bills Sent to Thousands of Workers - 14th Mar 19

Market Oracle FREE Newsletter

Stock Market Trend Forecast March to September 2019

Is the IMF to Greece what China is to the U.S.?

Interest-Rates / Global Debt Crisis Mar 24, 2010 - 08:26 AM GMT

By: Axel_Merk


If Greece eventually gets funding from the International Monetary Fund (“IMF”), it may not be so different from the U.S. getting its funding from China. There are two main fears in the eurzone against IMF involvement: a perception that Europe can’t solve its problems internally; and the potential influence of the IMF on European policies.

With respect to the former, in our assessment, Europe needs to swallow its pride. The IMF is equipped to deal with Greece. The European Union simply does not have the processes set up to deal with Greece. Not having a process is not necessarily a bad thing, as it ensures there is no easy bailout, forcing Greece to tackle its issues. That said, European leaders presently appear like a pack of headless chickens, with many notable voices publicly contradicting one another. Such politicking is the result of a lack of coordination. We don’t doubt that Europe is capable of coordinating help, but for the time being, most, we believe, would agree, that a good process is not yet in place.

From Greece’s point of view, they simply want access to cheap money. They don’t care whether the money comes from the IMF or the European Union. In that context, Greece is in a very similar situation to the U.S.: to fund its deficits, the U.S. doesn’t care where the money is coming from, as long as it is cheap. China has long been accepted as a convenient source of money to finance America’s spending addiction.

The argument in the eurozone about too much interference by the IMF into European politics is a fair one; however, is it all that different from the influence China has over the U.S.? To illustrate China’s influence, we would like to point to George H.W. Bush’s defeat in his presidential bid against Bill Clinton. At the time, tight monetary policy ahead of the election was cited as a reason why Bush Sr. lost. A consequence of China’s massive holdings of U.S. debt is that Chinese purchases can influence the cost of credit in the U.S., and with it, U.S. economic growth. Incidentally, China has been less active in buying U.S. Treasuries in recent months, possibly putting upward pressure on U.S. rates. Given the lag time such activity has to the real economy, China’s actions may potentially influence upcoming mid-term elections in the U.S.

There is, of course, a cure against influence by the IMF on Greece or China on the U.S.: it’s called living within your means. If Greece or the U.S. were to live within their means, they wouldn’t need to access the credit markets to finance their largesse. However, it’s an option politicians don’t like to hear.

There’s another parallel between U.S. and Greece: while the U.S. hasn’t faced a national strike because of its healthcare reform, the political process in both the U.S. and Europe can be an ugly one. Greece wants access to cheap money; France’s President Sarkozy, whose political fortunes are threatened, sees the IMF’s managing director as a political rival at home; Germany has the deepest pockets in Europe and isn’t about to hand out money for free. Caught in the middle may be the European Central Bank (ECB), which is most concerned about the integrity of the euro. In our opinion, this episode will deal a serious lesson to the eurozone and everyone invloved. The critics will need to learn that the euro can weather a storm; the European Commission needs to learn to be a more assertive leader in coordinating policy; and the ECB needs to learn to allow the political process to play its course, so they can focus on monetary policy.

And, maybe, at end the of the process, some will realize that the problem isn’t that Greece’s cost of borrowing is too high, but that access to money was too cheap for most of the past decade. In that context, we most appreciate ECB President Trichet's comments that any assistance for Greece should not be focused on lowering the cost of borrowing, but on providing emergency access to cash. In our assessment, it is a positive that the markets stepped in where policy makers failed, forcing Greece to institute tough austerity measures. Germany is absolutely right in not being bullied into a quick fix – when it comes to government problems – whether in Greece, the U.S. or elsewhere - quick fixes are difficult to come by.

By Axel Merk

Manager of the Merk Hard, Asian and Absolute Return Currency Funds,

Axel Merk, President & CIO of Merk Investments, LLC, is an expert on hard money, macro trends and international investing. He is considered an authority on currencies. Axel Merk wrote the book on Sustainable Wealth; order your copy today.

The Merk Absolute Return Currency Fund seeks to generate positive absolute returns by investing in currencies. The Fund is a pure-play on currencies, aiming to profit regardless of the direction of the U.S. dollar or traditional asset classes.

The Merk Asian Currency Fund seeks to profit from a rise in Asian currencies versus the U.S. dollar. The Fund typically invests in a basket of Asian currencies that may include, but are not limited to, the currencies of China, Hong Kong, Japan, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan and Thailand.

The Merk Hard Currency Fund seeks to profit from a rise in hard currencies versus the U.S. dollar. Hard currencies are currencies backed by sound monetary policy; sound monetary policy focuses on price stability.

The Funds may be appropriate for you if you are pursuing a long-term goal with a currency component to your portfolio; are willing to tolerate the risks associated with investments in foreign currencies; or are looking for a way to potentially mitigate downside risk in or profit from a secular bear market. For more information on the Funds and to download a prospectus, please visit

Investors should consider the investment objectives, risks and charges and expenses of the Merk Funds carefully before investing. This and other information is in the prospectus, a copy of which may be obtained by visiting the Funds' website at or calling 866-MERK FUND. Please read the prospectus carefully before you invest.

The Funds primarily invest in foreign currencies and as such, changes in currency exchange rates will affect the value of what the Funds own and the price of the Funds' shares. Investing in foreign instruments bears a greater risk than investing in domestic instruments for reasons such as volatility of currency exchange rates and, in some cases, limited geographic focus, political and economic instability, and relatively illiquid markets. The Funds are subject to interest rate risk which is the risk that debt securities in the Funds' portfolio will decline in value because of increases in market interest rates. The Funds may also invest in derivative securities which can be volatile and involve various types and degrees of risk. As a non-diversified fund, the Merk Hard Currency Fund will be subject to more investment risk and potential for volatility than a diversified fund because its portfolio may, at times, focus on a limited number of issuers. For a more complete discussion of these and other Fund risks please refer to the Funds' prospectuses.

This report was prepared by Merk Investments LLC, and reflects the current opinion of the authors. It is based upon sources and data believed to be accurate and reliable. Opinions and forward-looking statements expressed are subject to change without notice. This information does not constitute investment advice. Foreside Fund Services, LLC, distributor.

Axel Merk Archive

© 2005-2019 - The Market Oracle is a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication.

Post Comment

Only logged in users are allowed to post comments. Register/ Log in

6 Critical Money Making Rules