Why indebted Americans say ‘thanks’ to their eurozone friends

Americans are still the “unreformed spenders of other people’s money in this world”, according to fixed income manager Stewart Cowley.

But what is the only thing that saves their currency and indebted economy from a ‘Day of Judgement’ at the hands of global financial markets? It is Europe, he says, and that is only because it is facing its own reckoning.

Cowley’s Old Mutual Global Bond fund, available with euro hedged share class, and his Old Mutual Strategic Global Bond fund, have no exposure to the US dollar. They concentrate instead on “exposure to countries that can pay their way in the world”.

At the moment that means ‘global rebalancing currencies’ such as China’s yuan, which make up 10%, and ‘commodity currencies’ of Canada and Australia, also comprising 10%.

Cowley (pictured) says the eurozone public debe problem will be a long process, but he built on a small, significantly sub-index weight in euro exposure after Greece won the right to receive its tranche of €130bn rescue cash, avoiding default.

Politicians in Washington (and London) may be pushing Brussels, or Frankfurt, to solve the eurozone’s sovereign debt problems, but Cowley says it is only those same problems that are distracting financial markets from America’s, and Britain’s own debt problems.

“Europe has done Americans a massive service. But in future discriminatory capital will discriminate for those [countries] moving to deficit reduction, and the only group of people who are unreformed spenders of other people’s money are Americans.


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