Neil Unmack is a Reuters Breakingviews Associate Editor based in London. He covers credit markets, hedge funds, and Italy. Previously he was a corporate finance reporter at Bloomberg News in London. He started his career as a financial journalist in 2001 at Euromoney Institutional Investor, where he covered structured finance for EuroWeek magazine. He was educated at Eton College and Oxford University, graduating with a first class degree in modern languages.
Normally, signs that Europe’s largest economy avoided a recession in the final quarter would be good news. But to avoid a slow decline Germany needs to invest its healthy budget surplus. Without a proper slump, the fuel to speed up its misfiring output will remain untapped.
Rising bond yields and volatile markets mean the leveraged finance boom is over. The lenders which financed it have taken more risk than ever, and given away the ability to control struggling companies. When deals do go bad, they will get back much less than they are used to.
The bloc will allow banks to use UK clearing houses for a year, the minimum to spare $60 trln of swaps being cancelled if Britain can’t agree an exit deal. The temporary waiver also gives Europe a negotiating tool, and forces banks to shift business and staff across the Channel.