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Spanish Swoon Taking Germany Down

24 Jul 2012

It’s one thing for the bond market vigilantes to try to skin the people of Spain. But, uh oh, Germany is another issue — and you should care about this little new twist because it will reverberate around the world.

I’m not a fan of Moody’s, largely because it sat around rating as AAA all those bad mortgages that ended up creating the Global Financial Crisis. But, the ratings agency still has sway so, shudder hard at this report:

The ratings firm Moody’s Investors Service late Monday dimmed its outlook on Germany, the euro zone’s dominant economic power and political force, further exposing the currency bloc’s fragility on a day that also saw markets drop around the world on fears about Europe.

Moody’s cited the huge potential cost of a euro breakup and, alternatively, the steep bill that would be paid to hold it together.

The warning to Germany followed a dramatic flight by investors from Spanish bonds Monday, leaving the euro zone’s fourth-largest economy at grave risk of needing a bailout and sparking a selloff on global markets.

Remember the recent story. China is slowing. The mining boom will not last forever. If you add to that Germany — Germany!!! — at risk…cover your eyes from the unfolding disaster.