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Does anyone find it ironic that the UK and Netherlands are looking for bailouts because of individual decisions made by Brits and Dutch? Even while lecturing Greece in the media about looking for a handout? What of Germany accepting $20+ billion from the US taxpayer last year? I seem to recall the German gov't bank KfW made a $300 billion loan to Lehman a few hours before Lehman declared bankruptcy. Whose fault was that? And now the UK and Netherlands are threatening that Iceland will not receive an EU bid? Very rich. How very Greek.
by Upstate NY on Sun Mar 7th, 2010 at 07:43:15 PM EST
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In the case of Icesave, we're talking about less than a percent of GDP for each of the UK and the Netherlands, but something like 30% of Icelandic GDP.

Of course the conduct of Landsbanki in creating and managing Icesave was unconscionable, and the Icelandic government's blanket guarantee of all of the icelandic banks' foreign liabilities foolhardy, but the UK and the Netherlands are making a lot of fuss over peanuts.

En un viejo país ineficiente, algo así como España entre dos guerras civiles, poseer una casa y poca hacienda y memoria ninguna. -- Gil de Biedma

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sun Mar 7th, 2010 at 07:45:54 PM EST
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The lesson is pretty clear. Gov'ts are fearful of their economic future, and this fear paradoxically feeds the economic pressure on the gov'ts since the markets sense it.  
by Upstate NY on Sun Mar 7th, 2010 at 09:09:20 PM EST
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$300 million loan, not billion. Jeez.
by Upstate NY on Sun Mar 7th, 2010 at 08:57:12 PM EST
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but IIRC they made a payment under a swap agreement - which they were supposed to - but might have decided not to do and wait for the bankruptcy estate to sort out later...

In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes
by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Mon Mar 8th, 2010 at 05:24:32 AM EST
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Isn't that the excuse Greece and Goldman Sachs used to cook Greece's books?

En un viejo país ineficiente, algo así como España entre dos guerras civiles, poseer una casa y poca hacienda y memoria ninguna. -- Gil de Biedma
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Mon Mar 8th, 2010 at 05:30:20 AM EST
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in this case, the underlying transaction was, as far as I can remember, completely benign - the problem was the person who decided to send 300M into what was obviously-by-then a black hole. What I can't remember is whether that payment was an amount owed to Lehman (in which case the bankruptcy trustee would have claimed it anyway, just a bit later) or if it was some kind of drawdown (in which case the German bank would have had a legitimate reason not to let it happen once Lehman was bankrupt, and it traded good money for a one claim among a very large number of similar claim for Lehman's shrinking assets).

In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes
by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Mon Mar 8th, 2010 at 11:08:27 AM EST
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Can't we assume, however, that it was the latter since the US taxpayer had to make do on a claim that was never recovered through bankruptcy proceedings?
by Upstate NY on Mon Mar 8th, 2010 at 01:02:51 PM EST
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