By Katya Wachtel
On Sunday, voters in Greece’s parliamentary election gave market-watchers the result they wanted.
But in the minds of many money managers, those election results are little more than a band-aid for the euro zone’s deep and complex debt problems, and their attention is focused further West. Many hedge fund managers say it is Spain – the euro zone’s fourth largest economy and the recent recipient of a 100 billion euro bank bailout – that is the real concern for the stability global financial markets.
“Greece has been off the radar screen since March as far as I am concerned,” said Robert Koenigsberger, founder and chief investment officer at $3.2 billion investment manager Gramercy. “When everyone went to bed on Sunday night, I doubt they were expecting to wake up and find that Spain would be 25 basis points wider. People probably thought there would be a risk-on trade that could give Spain some relief.”
Other U.S-based hedge funds noted that the spike in Spanish yields on Monday reflect where market participants’ real concern lies, as well as skepticism over bank bailout of that country earlier this month.
“With Spanish Yields jumping over 7% [on Monday], no-one was feeling all that positive post-Greek elections,” wrote Jack Flaherty, a fixed income manager at $47.9 billion investment firm GAM.