“Cash Must Not Be Made the Scapegoat”

“Cash Must Not Be Made the Scapegoat”:

In the War on Cash, a rare defense of physical money by an ECB Board Member.

The proposed EU-wide cash restrictions could come into effect as early as this year. But defenders of physical cash have an unexpected ally in their struggle: Yves Mersch, a member of the European Central Bank’s executive board. In a speech hosted by the Bundesbank last week, the Luxembourgian central banker exalted cash’s value as legal tender and heaped scorn on the oft-heard argument that its anonymity only helps criminals.

“Protection of privacy matters to all of us. Privacy protects people from the risk of a surveillance state and thought police,” he told his audience. “No particular link can be established statistically between cash and criminal activities. The focus must be on the fight against crime. Cash must not be made the scapegoat.”

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Spanish finance minister backed for leading ECB job

Spanish finance minister backed for leading ECB job:

BRUSSELS (AP) — Finance ministers from the 19-country eurozone on Monday endorsed Spain’s Luis de Guindos for the coveted post of European Central Bank vice president, after Ireland withdrew the only other candidate.

European Union leaders are expected to anoint de Guindos at a summit on March 22-23, after seeking the opinion of EU lawmakers and the ECB, which oversees the euro currency. Once that is done, de Guindos will replace Vitor Constancio on June 1 and serve a non-renewable eight-year term.

H/t reader squodgy:

“Looking at this lot, I can’t say I feel any confidence or reassurance whatsoever.
As we say, “They couldn’t run a piss up in a brewery”.”

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ECB Proposes End To Deposit Protection

“Savers should be looking for means in which they can keep their money within instant reach and their reach only.

Protect Your Savings With Gold: ECB Propose End To Deposit Protection:

– Protect Your Savings With Gold: ECB Propose End To Deposit Protection
– New ECB paper proposes ‘covered deposits’ should be replaced to allow for more flexibility
– Fear covered deposits may lead to a run on the banks
– Savers should be reminded that a bank’s word is never its bond and to reduce counterparty exposure
– Physical gold enable savers to stay out of banking system and reduce exposure to bail-ins

It is the ‘opinion of the European Central Bank‘ that the deposit protection scheme is no longer necessary:

‘covered deposits and claims under investor compensation schemes should be replaced by limited discretionary exemptions to be granted by the competent authority in order to retain a degree of flexibility.’

To translate the legalese jargon of the ECB bureaucrats this could mean that the current €100,000 (£85,000) deposit level currently protected in the event of a bail-in may soon be no more. But worry not fellow savers, as the ECB is fully aware of the uproar this may cause so they have been kind enough to propose that:

“…during a transitional period, depositors should have access to an appropriate amount of their covered deposits to cover the cost of living within five working days of a request.”

So that’s a relief, you’ll only need to wait five days for some ‘competent authority’ to deem what is an ‘appropriate amount’ of your own money for you to have access to in order eat, pay bills and get to work.

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The ECB’s Balance Sheet Is Now The Size Of Japan’s GDP And Stands At €4.23 TRILLION, Making It The Largest Central Bank Holding In The World

The ECB’s Balance Sheet Is Now The Size Of Japan’s GDP:

The ECB’s balance sheet now stands at €4.23 trillion, making it the largest central bank holding in the World. As Deutsche Bank notes, this is the same as the GDP of Japan (€4.3 trillion) – the 3rd biggest economy in the world and a decent distance ahead of Germany (€3.02tn) – the fourth largest.

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Martin Armstrong: ECB In Serious Trouble

ECB In Serious Trouble:

The European Central Bank (ECB) left its stimulus programs and record low interest rates unchanged. Pundits were seeing some cyclical signs of what they hoped was a spreading recovery in the 19 countries that use the euro currency rather than just a bounce in anticipation of tourist season. The ECB dropped any wording that it could lower interest rates further, which is a claimed sign of greater confidence in the economy, but in reality, is more of a reflection of it being trapped in desperate nightmarish measures.

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“Nothing Else Matters”: Central Banks Have Bought A Record $1.5 Trillion In Assets In 2017

“Nothing Else Matters”: Central Banks Have Bought A Record $1.5 Trillion In Assets In 2017:

Central banks have bought a record $1.5 trillion of financial assets in just the first five months of 2017, which amounts to $3.6 trillion annualized, “the largest CB buying on record.”

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Why “Nothing Matters”: Central Banks Have Bought A Record $1 Trillion In Assets In 2017

Why “Nothing Matters”: Central Banks Have Bought A Record $1 Trillion In Assets In 2017:

Central banks (ECB & BoJ) have bought $1 trillion of financial assets just in the first four months of 2017, which amounts to $3.6 trillion annualized, “the largest CB buying on record.”

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40% Of Spanish Children Live In Poverty

40% Of Spanish Children Live In Poverty:

Despite a resurging stock market and stabilized bond risk premia (cough Draghi cough), EurActiv reports the proportion of children living below the poverty line in Spain has increased by 9 percentage points between 2008 and 2014, to reach almost 40%.

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War on Cash Puts ECB, EU on Collision Course with Germany

War on Cash Puts ECB, EU on Collision Course with Germany:

Bundesbank: It’s a war on personal freedom and choice.

Relations between Germany, and the ECB have curdled in recent times over a key issue: the role of cash. Germans have a soft spot for physical lucre while the ECB and Europe’s executive branch, the European Commission, have openly expressed their desire to suppress, or even punish, its use.

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Mario Draghi Hints Trump Will Be Responsible For The Next Financial Crisis

Mario Draghi Hints Trump Will Be Responsible For The Next Financial Crisis:

According to Mario Draghi, portfolio manager of the world’s biggest hedge fund, it is not his gargantuan balance sheet equal to 36% of the eurozone GDP, nor the $14 trillion in global central bank liquifity that will be responsible for the next market crash, but that Donald Trump’s deregulation of the banking industry has “sown the seeds of the next financial crisis.”

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In Stunning Admission, Draghi Says A Country Can Leave Eurozone But Must “Settle Bill First”

In Stunning Admission, Draghi Says A Country Can Leave Eurozone But Must “Settle Bill First”:

Less than 4 years ago, and shortly after his infamous “whatever it takes” threat to speculators, Mario Draghi responded to a question from Zero Hedge readers, saying “there is no Plan B” when it comes to contingency plans for a Eurozone nation leaving the monetary union. The reasoning was simple: the mere contemplation of such a scenario assigned a probability to its occurrence, which is why the ECB was desperate to give the impression that no matter what, Europe’s cohesion is unbreakable.

Fast forward four years later, when not only has this particular strategy been thoroughly rejected, but for the first time ever the head of the ECB provided a framework, vague as it may be, laying out what a Eurozone exit would look like.

In a letter to two Italian lawmakers in the European Parliament released on Friday, and first reported by Reuters, Mario Draghi implied that a country could leave the euro zone – so much for “No Plan B” –  but first it would need to settle or debts with the bloc’s TARGET2 payments system before severing ties. 

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ECB Assets Hit 35% Of Eurozone GDP; Draghi Owns 9.2% Of European Corporate Bond Market

ECB Assets Hit 35% Of Eurozone GDP; Draghi Owns 9.2% Of European Corporate Bond Market:

As global markets bask in the glow of the Trumpflation recovery, the ECB continues to be busy providing the actual levitating power behind what DB recently dubbed global “helicopter money“, and as of the latest update, the central bank added a total of €21 billion in assets, bringing the total to €3.631 trillion, an amount equal to almost 35% of the entire Eurozone GDP.

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Former CEO Of UBS And Credit Suisse: “Central Banks Are Past The Point Of No Return, It Will All End In A Crash”

Former CEO Of UBS And Credit Suisse: “Central Banks Are Past The Point Of No Return, It Will All End In A Crash”:

Remember when bashing central banks and predicting financial collapse as a result of monetary manipulation and intervention was considered “fake news” within the “serious” financial community, disseminated by fringe blogs?

Good times.

In an interview with Swiss Sonntags Blick titled appropriately enough “A Recession Is Sometimes Necessary“, the former CEO of UBS and Credit Suisse, Oswald Grübel, lashed out by criticizing the growing strength of central banks and their ‘supremacy over the markets and other banks’. The former chief executive officer claimed that the use of negative interest rates and huge positive balance sheets represent ‘weapons of mass destruction’. He calls for an end to the use of negative interest rates. 

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