Two casualties of the current economic slowdown we see in China are the dollars belonging to our friends down under, the Australian and New Zealand dollars. Since the middle of last summer, the Aussie has fallen by 26% and the Kiwi by 28%, so in the race that neither probably wants to win, right now New Zealand is slightly ahead. Great news for buyers of those southern hemisphere dollars though, as this year the USD goes a lot farther down under than it did last year.
Greeks were asked a question over the weekend, and unsurprisingly voted overwhelmingly no to further belt tightening. But really, who would vote yes to voluntarily accept an imposition of harsher financial conditions? Though the answer was loudly received in Bonn and Brussels, the only reality is now more questions than answers as to what happens next.
Global financial markets have hit a rough spot around the globe this morning as Greece appears as though it will default on tomorrow’s debt payment that is due. Money is flowing freely out of the PIGS (Portugal, Italy, Greece, Spain) and into Germany and Switzerland predominantly. Domestically, Greece has basically shut it’s banks and limited ATM withdrawals to prevent large scale emptying of Greek banks. The Euro currency, and global currencies for that matter, are not much changed over pre-weekend levels as the lead up to this event has basically been built in over the last few months. Unfortunately, this event will probably not be the culmination but perhaps just the beginning of a longer period of turmoil as this may just be the first domino to fall,