In a speech delivered Tuesday in Paris, billionaire investor George Soros warned that the world could be on the brink of another devastating financial crisis, as debt crises reemerge in Europe and a strengthening dollar pressures both the US's emerging- and developed-market rivals.
And Europe, with Italy dragging worries about the possible dissolution of the euro back to the forefront, won't be far behind. Political pressures like the dissolution of its transatlantic alliance with the US will eventually translate into economic harm. Presently, Europe is facing three pressing problems: The refugee crisis, the austerity policy that has hindered Europe's economic development, and territorial disintegration - not only Brexit, but the threat that countries like Italy might follow suit...
“Brexit is an immensely damaging process harmful to both sides,” the billionaire exclaimed.
But in the near-term, the US's decision to pull out of the Iran deal is straining Europe's alliance with its most important Western partner just as the strengthening dollar is constricting financial conditions around the world.
Until recently, it could have been argued that austerity is working: the European economy is slowly improving, and Europe must simply persevere. But, looking ahead, Europe now faces the collapse of the Iran nuclear deal and the destruction of the transatlantic alliance, which is bound to have a negative effect on its economy and cause other dislocations.
The strength of the dollar is already precipitating a flight from emerging-market currencies. We may be heading for another major financial crisis. The economic stimulus of a Marshall Plan for Africa and other parts of the developing world should kick in just at the right time. That is what has led me to put forward an out-of-the-box proposal for financing it.
Soros's warning comes as Italian bond yields shoot to multi-year highs.
It is no longer a "figure of speech" to claim that the EU is in "existential danger," Soros said. It's an obvious reality.
“The EU is in an existential crisis. Everything that could go wrong has gone wrong,” he said.
To escape the crisis, “it needs to reinvent itself.”
"The United States, for its part, has exacerbated the EU’s problems. By unilaterally withdrawing from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, President Donald Trump has effectively destroyed the transatlantic alliance. This has put additional pressure on an already beleaguered Europe. It is no longer a figure of speech to say that Europe is in existential danger; it is the harsh reality."
The only way to prevent an all-out collapse, Soros explained, would be a 30 billion euro ($35.4 billion) "Marshall Plan" for Africa that Soros believes would help stem the flow of migrants into Europe, something that, Soros finally admits, is one of the biggest problems facing Europe. The EU, Soros believes, should use its "largely unused"...