Originally Posted by Sulla the Dictator
That's fine. I notice that S&P is talking about downgrading 15 European nations now. You're probably right, things are going to go well.
The threat of a downgrade by the rating agencies has been hanging over European markets for months. It is not going to destroy the eurozone or the euro. At most, it will allow Wall Street traders to make more profits, by shorting the euro, government bonds etc.
As I said earlier, the fiscal situation of the US government is no better than that of the core countries of the EU (see IMF chart I quoted above). In fact, it is a little worse, but the gap between revenues and expenses is disguised by the "exorbitant privilege," as De Gaulle once famously put it, which the United States enjoys in the world economy: the US government can repay its debts in dollars (loans from foreign central banks) by printing more dollars. In effect, it can repay foreigners with a devalued currency, inflating its way out of debt. (When there was a gold standard this would have been impossible).
Moreover, the US can also run huge trade deficits (i.e. Americans can import and consume more than they produce and export---as they have done for decades), without having to face what usually happens when countries are in a similar situation: the demand by lenders for a risk premium, a higher return on the money they lend, which normally would cause yields on bonds to rise and a devaluation of the currency. Asians, Arabs and others have no choice but to lend their surplus dollars to Americans.
Connaly, American Secretary of the Treasury under LBJ: "The dollar is our money, but it is your problem." Your= the rest of the world.
I wish BHTV would devote a diavlog by economists to this topic.