Need A Bit Of Fun In Your Life? Buy A Greek Bank Stock

Take a walk on the wild side!
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Only occasionally necessary!

For all of the wild swings, the chance to lose everything wihtout a moment’s notice, and risks ranging from German desires to instill a few lessons (like the lesson of: how to throw a country out of the Eurozone) to a Communist revolution, Greece must be a fun place to invest. Maybe it’s only because you occasionally get to go there and enjoy all that Greece has to offer at a steep, steep discount, with the only requirement being you show up to the occasional conference or meeting to bitch. Maybe it’s something else. Whatever it is, it’s good enough to make Greece the new gold for lots of hedge funds: They just can’t lose enough money over there waiting for the allegedly inevitable turn.

Perhaps the most powerful sign that investors may be willing to give Greece the benefit of the doubt, at least for a while longer, is that just about all the funds that took big losses in Greek bank stocks have not washed their hands of Greece, as one might expect.

Instead, Greek bankers here say that these investors chose to participate in the latest fund offering, enticed no doubt by discounts of as much as 70 percent of the company’s total value.

Now if only the banks and lawyers would let them throw even more money away! Alas, a dream deferred.

Mr. Karagiannis says that the only way Greek banks can start making loans again is to allow outside investors to buy some of the nonperforming loans that the banks are holding — which in cases like Piraeus Bank is close to half the existing book of loans.

But experts say that antiquated bankruptcy laws and fears of vulture investors pushing Greeks out of their homes and taking over companies pose a hurdle for outside investors looking to replicate their successes in more open markets like Ireland and Spain.

Foreign Investors Tiptoe Through Minefield of Greek Banking System [DealBook]

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