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Forex Blog - Markets Crash, Carry Crushed on European Open, All Eyes on G-7 and Lehman Settlement Later Today

Markets Crash, Carry Crushed on European Open, All Eyes on G-7 and Lehman Settlement Later Today Last Updated 10/10/2008 4:53:46 AM EST (GMT +5)

Markets Crash, Carry Crushed on European Open, All Eyes on G-7 and Lehman Settlement Later Today

Global equity markets crashed in the wake of sharp declines in the DJIA yesterday with Nikkei dropping almost 10% as the index closed below the 8000 level for the first time since the mid 1980’s. The European markets followed with a disastrous opening with most indices gapping lower by -8% to -10%. For a little while the only stock price showing green amidst the thousands of European equities on the multitude of bourses across the continent was that of Volkswagen, which was pushed higher by a complex short squeeze dynamic.

After the horrid opening European equities stabilized as attention turned to the G-7 meeting later on in the day in Washington DC and the settlement of the Lehman CDS paper in the wake of its bankruptcy.Markets are unsure about the extent of the open liability on the guarantees triggered by the Lehman default and fears abound that the settlement of trades could further stress the balance sheets of the already badly battered financial sector.

In addition to the Lehman story the North American open brings a slew of fresh event risk including the release of GE earnings at 10:30 GMT and possible announcement from G-7 of additional coordinated action.The US Trade Balance is due as well at 12:30 GMT but at this point fundamentals have become nothing more than an intellectual curiosity as the only issue driving all markets is risk or no risk. To that end, it will be crucial for authorities to act today, as next Monday brings Columbus Day holiday and although US markets will be open in the, banks and the Federal government will be closed. If there is no stabilization and some concrete assurances by market open on Monday, some analysts fear that Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley could come under enormous pressure and possibly face the risk of bankruptcy much like Lehman and Bear Stearns.

Given these apocalyptic scenarios, consensus is building amongst the G-7 policymakers to centralize the two largest over the counter markets – LIBOR and CDS which have come to a grinding halt, as counterparties no longer trust each other and credit is cut off to a trickle. The centralization of clearing for these two key markets (much like equities on NYSE and NASDAQ and futures on CME) would go along way towards alleviating the fear that has paralyzed these two key markets. Centralized clearing would effectively guarantee counter party risk and provide much better price transparency perhaps enticing bargain hunters to make some bids. Global policymakers however must move fast, as investor confidence is being drained by the moment and markets are unlikely to stabilize and function well without some centralized structure. For FX, the bottom line is that risk on remains the dominant trading theme of the day and high yielders will continue to be pressured until some semblance of order returns.

FX Upcoming

Currency GMT EST Release Expected Prior
CAD 7:00 11:00 CAD Net Change in Employment (SEP) 12.5K 15.2K
CAD 8:30 12:30 CAD International Merchandise Trade (Canadian dollar) (AUG) 4.7B 4.9B
USD 8:30 12:30 USD Trade Balance (AUG)) -59.3B -62.2B

About The Author

Schlossberg has more than 20 years experience financial trading on Wall Street. His daily currency research appears in numerous newspapers worldwide and Schlossberg serves as a regular contributor to CNBC's Squawk Box and Bloomberg radio and television. Read more >>

DISCLAIMER: This forum and the information provided here should not be relied upon as a substitute for extensive independent research before making your investment decisions. Global Forex Trading is merely providing this column for your general information. This forum and its information does not take into account any particular individual’s investment objectives, financial situation, or needs. All investors should obtain advice based on their unique situation before making any investment decision based upon this forum or any information contained within. In addition, any projections or views of the market provided by the author may not prove to be accurate. Global Forex Trading and Boris will not be responsible for any losses incurred on investments made by readers and clients as a result of any information contained in this column. Global Forex Trading and Boris do not render investment, legal, accounting, tax or other professional advice. If such advice is sought, or other expert assistance is required, the services of a competent professional should be sought.



 

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