Wall St. Helped Hide Greece's Debt, Now It's Kablooie!

Looks like Goldman turned the Parthenon into a gunpowder magazine for a second time; Greece’s recently revealed debt crisis is rattling the world economy and familiar culprits are at play: Wall Street banks, off-the books loans, derivatives, and other occult financial instruments. I guess we blame the consumer on this one too?

For instance, in a deal brokered by Goldman Sachs, Greece used swaps to trade away the rights to airport fees and lottery proceeds for money. Since they weren’t recorded as loans, the true size of Greece’s liabilities and deficit was hidden from bond buyers and regulators. Now the truth is out and the market has turned on its former darling.

Hmm… sounds similar to the American sub-prime meltdown, for which the “greedy American consumer” was first eviscerated. Let’s instead hold up the banks to their supposed fiduciary responsibility. There’s a reason why cops prefer to bust dealers instead of users.

Wall St. Helped to Mask Debt Fueling Europe’s Crisis [NYT]

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