The Next Financial Crisis Is Starting In Emerging Markets

The 2008 financial crisis was well overdue, what with predictably slowing demographics, especially in the U.S. at first, and an unprecedented debt bubble in the developed countries.

The trigger was the subprime crisis – a small, but high-risk sector of really bad loans that started to blow up when everyday households started to default on mortgages they could never afford in the first place. But that was only the trigger.

Since early 2009, we’ve seen unprecedented money printing to save the banking system and economy from a depression, and most of the new debt has accumulated in the third world. A McKinsey study shows that emerging markets have taken on $57 trillion in additional debt through 2014, with more to follow.

Like 2008, this too will blow. The trigger this time looks to be corporate loan failures in emerging countries, starting with Turkey and the worst, Venezuela.

Turkey, like China, greatly over-expanded after 2008 with cheap dollar-based loans. Such foreign loans aren’t in their control and makes them more vulnerable to defaults.

And now, with the dollar and U.S. interest rates rising, Turkey is getting into trouble quickly.

Venezuela’s over-spending on social programs, from oil revenues, when they were high and dependence on foreign debt, was more extreme and that’s the classic scenario where you get hyperinflation. You must print large amounts of money to pay off increasingly expensive foreign debt – but unlike the developed countries, that money doesn’t go back into the economy to help prop it and the banks up.

Rather, the currency keeps crashing from such outflows creating internal inflation from imports, and it makes those foreign loans massively more expensive… so they print much more money until they approach one million percent inflation. Welcome to Venezuela today.

This chart tells the story.

(Click on image to enlarge)

The developed countries debt spree, especially corporate, peaked in 2008. It’s been flat ever since, with a brief drop as a percentage of GDP in 2014. It was 94% in early 2008 and is 92% today. They didn’t de-leverage, nor leverage back up further.

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Gary Anderson 1 week ago Contributor's comment

I disagree that China will crash the hardest. It is not subject to Basel accords, and clearly it does NOT have to mark to market! The companies are owned by the central bank, lol.

Gary Anderson 1 week ago Contributor's comment

Emerging markets could make the US financial system very unstable. China would probably like to do that.