Thursday, 4 August 2011

Markets take a tumble as fear spreads about state of world economies, a socialist alternative is needed

Today saw one of the biggest falls on the global stock markets in 3 years with big dips in America and in Britain.

Wall Street had its worst day for almost three years as shares tumbled on fears about the eurozone debt crisis and the US economic recovery.

The Dow Jones index closed down more than 500 points, or 4.3%, and came after the leading European bourses fell more than 3%.

It was the biggest one-day fall for the Dow since 22 October 2008.

Earlier, European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso warned that the sovereign debt crisis was spreading.

Also in New York, the S&P 500 index fell 4.8% and the tech-rich Nasdaq was more than 5% lower.

Meanwhile, Frankfurt's Dax and London's FTSE 100 indexes had their worst day this year, closing almost 3.5% lower as investors fretted that Italy and Spain might become engulfed in the debt crisis.

"People are throwing in the towel because they can't find relief on any front," said Milton Ezrati, market strategist at Lord Abbett.

Investors sought the relative safety of gold, sending the price of the metal to a new record high of $1,677 an ounce.

More weak jobs data from the US also raised concerns about the strength of the economic recovery there.

Wall Street's financial power houses were hit hard, with JP Morgan and Bank of America falling 5% and 7.4% respectively.

In Europe, Lloyds Banking Group fell 9.9% and Royal Bank of Scotland was down 7%. France's Societe Generale lost 6.9% and Germany's Commerzbank dropped 6.8% in Frankfurt.

Miners also suffered, with Vedanta Resources slumping 9.5% and Xstrata and Eurasian Natural Resources falling more than 8% in London.

The oil price also slumped on fears that a weaker global recovery would hit demand. Benchmark West Texas crude for September delivery fell $5.30, or 5.8%, to $86.63 a barrel. Brent crude fell 5.3% to $107.25.

This just highlights the fragileness of the global recovery if you can even call it one. There are fears over Italy and Spain who are borrowing at high interest rates which they are not thought to be able to sustain for too long.

There is increasing doubt over these economies and this doesnt even begin to mention Greece which surely will take anotehr tumble sadly. But all this means that global economists are urging for more cuts and less borrowing. I.e austerity which we are all starting to become very familiar with unfortunatly. If your nearing the edge pull back and cut is the message being sent to countries in trouble.

But this is no warmth to the working class who as a result of all this will feel their living standards cut even further and jobs lost, wages cut and gains we have made over decades taken away.

Unless we resist . There i a growing movement of reisstance but i feel this now has to be stepped up to a major scale. Bringing whole cities and towns to a stand still for prolonged time. The demand to write off the debt must be started to be made i feel too. If this message is spread early enough it can become ingrained in workers contiousness and spread.

The absence of a workers party in much of europe and the world is still very evident. The struggle for this must continue with building of things like TUSC - trade union and socialist coalition in order to give workers a voice on thepolitical stage and a alternative to the cuts and austerity.

Idealy this need for a party would not be nessesarily to win elections and replace labour as a careerist capitalist pro busienss party but to reject capitalism and offer a new way forward for workers to realise. NOt by just voting will things change it all has to be linked to the continuous need for socialism and democratic workers control of the planned economy.

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