Friday, May 7, 2010

"‘It’s the beginning of the endgame for…’ Belgium?"

Too funny.
With Brussels being the de facto capital of Europe, this is starting to get close to the Eurocrats.
They already shift the EU Parliament between Brussels and Strasbourg in one of the most bizarre and wasteful exercises I can think of. Maybe it's time to face facts and head for Germany.
From FT Alphaville:

File this on under Sovereign crisis –> eurozone –> the search for the next Greece.

Sharp-eyed readers may have noticed a little dig in Independent Strategy’s note on sovereign contagion. Belgium, it seems, could be next in line for the contagion treatment, according to the research house:

The countries in the ‘contagion area’ of the Eurozone (namely Spain, Portugal, Greece, Ireland and unexpectedly, Belgium) account for about one-fifth of Eurozone GDP.

In fact, Independent Strategy is advising its clients to basically short the country:

Investors need to take out some insurance against this crisis scenario. Belgium is one country that has stayed outside the fray. Its CDS premia and government bond yields have only just started to rise and even today are only slightly above long-term averages (Figure 5). It is as if most investors still think it’s a slightly second-class Germany.

Second-class Germany. Ouch....MORE

You might get away with shorting Sofina or Banque Nationale de Belgique, I'd be careful with InBev, folks want beer no matter what.