Our Two Cents – Week of 5/29/12
Summer has arrived. After last weekend’s gorgeous weather in Boston as we honored Memorial Day, we erased our cravings for hamburgers and hot dogs and replaced them with hunger for some knowledge of the currency markets.
In the U.S., economic optimism continued. The May Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan’s index on consumer sentiment rose to its highest level in four years. According to the survey, consumer sentiment increased to 79.3 from 76.4 in April. The highest jump since October 2007, the survey also showed half of all consumers felt the economy has improved during the last year. Jobless claims, which remained at 370,000, also illustrated economic stability.
While conditions in America painted an optimistic picture, images abroad weren’t cast in the same stroke. Greece remained much of the focal point as the country devised plans for a parallel currency to the euro, should it withdraw from the region. Sergey Shvestov, vice president of Russia’s Central Bank, said Greece’s departure from the eurozone was necessary, and it would be a “good example” for other countries. Facing discussions about debt issuances, German Chancellor Angela Merkel defended her opposition about why bonds won’t solve the eurozone’s problems, saying such tools wouldn’t get to the root of the problem. Ultimately, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development warned the 17-member region that a severe recession looms if its governments and central banks don’t act quickly to improve economic conditions.
For hedge funds, an overwhelmingly majority of them added compliance staff since 2008, according to a new survey. Hedge fund redemptions for May 2012 upped 3.31 percent, according to the GlobeOp Forward Redemption Indicator.
- Consumer Sentiment Rises to Highest Level in Four Years, The New York Times, May 25, 2012
- Greece Already has Plan for Parallel Currency to Euro – Russian Central Banker, Forex Crunch, May 25, 2012
- Overwhelming Majority Of Hedge Funds Add Compliance Staff Since ’08, FINalternatives, May 24, 2012
- Jobless claims little changed last week, Reuters, May 24, 2012
- Merkel: Makes No Sense To Solve Problems With Euro-Zone Bonds , The Wall Street Journal, May 24, 2012
- Euro zone officials agree to prepare for Greek exit scenario, Reuters, May 23, 2012
- Hedge Fund Redemptions Up In May, FINalternatives, May 22, 2012
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