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How The Crisis In Greece Is Impacting The Foreign Exchange Market

Up today, down tomorrow? The fortunes of the euro are swinging widely depending on the news from Greece.

It might seem like the international political equivalent of a soap opera. Updates from Greece emerge as regularly as episodes of Eastenders, in which there is a new twist on whether the heavily indebted nation is set to receive its latest EU loan, implement crucial reforms, or just plan give up the ghost and default, abandoning the euro and returning to the drachma. Furthermore these nightly episodes have a lot of viewers, as international investors incorporate events in Greece into their decisions whether to sell the euro. It is not exaggerating things to say the future of the currency hangs on Greece in this sense! Why then is it so important? And how can you use the situation to help you?

The Musketeers of Foreign Exchange

The situation in Greece matters because the members of the euro are a little like the three musketeers: they go ahead shouting “All for one and one for all!” In this sense, the euro lives or dies according to the health of its members. If Greece or Portugal look a bit green about the gills, that has a knock-on impact on larger economies like France and Germany. In fact, it is not exaggerating to say that, though Greece is only a small country, its defaulting could plunge both Europe and the world into crisis! Commentators describe that scenario as comparable to the collapse of Lehman Brothers in 2008.

Turning to the present, right now the Greek situation has hurt the euro against its rivals, because Greece and the EU are at blows regarding its second bailout. For Europe, it is no longer certain Greece can be trusted, following months in which it has promised reforms and failed to deliver. This has reached the point that German finance minister Wolfgang Schlaueble is calling for Greece to give up control of its own finances, and hand them to Brussels! For Greece meanwhile, this is of course a huge insult. Hence the impasse – and the Euro weakness.

How Might The Foreign Exchange Rate Change In Future?

Turning to the future, the state of the euro depends on awful lot on the solution that emerges. For me at least, there is no serious threat of Greece leaving the euro right now. The reports in the newspapers are spats between partners, but do not represent a permanent divide. In that sense, it seems certain to me that the euro will eventually gain as Greece makes progress. But I could be wrong! And before that agreement emerges, there could yet be more ups and downs prompting euro weakness.

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March 5, 2012 um 8:07 am
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