It is quite amazing how many times we can rally on almost the identical news. Futures are surging as investors 'anticipate a solution' this
Sunday Wednesday to all that ails Europe. This same solution has driven the market up in 80% of the sessions the past 3 weeks. It's the plan for a solution that keeps giving. With the S&P at 1215 at the close yesterday and the 200 day moving average up at 1234, futures indicate we're going up to test that level for the second time this week.
It will be interesting to see what happens when and if we get over that key level, as that will be a sign for bears to give up and throw in the towel. Usually that is the point when we actually are prone to a reversal. But with happiness reigning due to the Sunday + Wednesday meeting(s) one wonders if we will ever 'sell on the news' - it's been a buy the rumor, and buy the news market thus far.
- Germany tried to put an optimistic face on discussions with France over a strategy to deal with Europe's crippling debt crisis Friday, despite a warning from a French minister that the euro currency itself was under threat.
- Markets appear to be giving Europe the benefit of the doubt that they will eventually be able to agree to a comprehensive package of measures in time for a second summit, which a German government spokesman said was tentatively scheduled for Wednesday.
- Chancellor Angela Merkel refused to discuss any differences between Germany and France in talks with lawmakers a day after the two countries conceded that a new strategy won't emerge this weekend. Members of her government repeatedly stressed Europe's two biggest economies were in agreement on the broad outlines of a deal.
- Finance ministers from the 17 countries that use the euro will be looking to thrash out differences of opinion later Friday as they gather in Brussels, ahead of the arrival of the leaders on Saturday. Ahead of their meeting, the chairman of the eurogroup, Jean-Claude Juncker, said the delay to a debt crisis deal created a disastrous image of the eurozone to the outside world and that it's not necessarily just France and Germany that have differences of opinion.
- Sunday's leaders' summit had been earmarked as the time Europe would finally deliver a comprehensive plan to get a grip on the currency union's debt troubles, which has seen three countries bailed out and threatened the future of the euro currency itself.
- Though Merkel insisted in discussions with lawmakers Friday that there are no major differences of opinion between herself and French President Nicolas Sarkozy, Europe's two biggest economies appeared to be at loggerheads over how to make best use of the bailout fund, the so-called European Financial Stability Facility, or EFSF.
- Merkel's spokesman Steffen Seibert said Merkel and Sarkozy held a telephone conference on Thursday with President Barack Obama and Prime Minister David Cameron to discuss the summit and that leaders agreed the outcome must involve sending a clear signal of an end to the debt crisis.
- Seibert said the decision to split the summit into a two-step process -- with Sunday envisioned as a chance to hammer out the details of how the EFSF is to be used and the overall package to be passed on Wednesday.
- Yet, while France proposes turning the EFSF into a bank that would have access to unlimited credit from the European Central Bank, Germany has refused to sanction such a move, arguing it would compromise the ECB's impartiality.
- What to do about the euro440 billion ($607 billion) EFSF doesn't seem to be the only point of contention. Germany and several other rich countries have been pushing for banks and other private investors to take steeper losses on their Greek bondholdings, before the eurozone can sign off on a second multibillion euro rescue package for the struggling country. France and the European Central Bank had so far opposed forcing banks to write off more Greek debt, fearing that would destabilize the banking sector and worsen market turmoil.