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Tétreau, Edouard

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Le Monde - France | 17/01/2012

Edouard Tétreau on the destructive dream of the rating agencies

The European states are allowing themselves to be pitted against each other by the rating agencies instead of concentrating on their own strengths, complains the business consultant Edouard Tétreau in the left-liberal daily Le Monde: "The Balkanisation of Europe by S&P: it must be great to be able to play Germany off against France, Spain against the UK and Italy against Austria from the safety of an office in London. Do the rating agencies want a Europe at war? In any event Europe's utter ruin would make their day. Despite all appearances nothing would be worse for the agencies' business than a successful Europe whose states, enterprises and private households were so rich that they no longer needed financial markets - or rating agencies. The absolute horror scenario would be a system in which the European banks no longer speculated, but returned to their original field: transforming the Europeans' abundant savings into business equity and profitable loans for states and local municipalities. Real banks, that is, ones that would be able to send the brokers on Wall Street and the City of London packing."

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