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If your Crystal Ball told you that the tiny nation of Cyprus would cause world markets to go down on Monday, then I recommend you use it again to find the winning number for the $260 million Powerball lottery.
So now that it is the top headline... what should we do about it???
My gut instinct is to act like this is "much ado about nothing". That's because ignoring any and all news from Europe has been the right investment call for nearly a year.
Unfortunately, the more I think about it, the more it bothers me. Simply this bank deposit tax is a HORRIBLE IDEA. Especially since much of the work the Europeans have done the last couple of years is to bolster an ailing banking system. So this is a big Red Flag telling all investors to remove their money from banks in any of the PIIGS or other debt ridden nations... because this tax could be levied on them next.
If that is the best idea they have, then it means they are running out of good options. And if that is true, then it may signal bigger problems on the way. And if Europe goes from their current light recession to a deep one... then indeed it will rock the world economy including the good ol' U.S. of A.
I am not hitting the panic button just yet. Hopefully the players in Europe come up with a more sensible way to handle this. If not, then I will be advocating a more defensive posture for our portfolios.
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