European Debt Crisis Jumps the Shark

 | Dec 07, 2011 | 9:10 AM EST  | Comments
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At last it looks like my indicator has been triggered. We've reached an inflection point and the European debt crisis is firmly on the way to a resolution that will leave the euro intact.

This isn't anything to do with charts, ratings agency recommendations or backroom EU deals. I am a strong believer in the Pop Culture Indicator.

Making the rounds on European trading floors is the story that Metallica and the Red Hot Chili Peppers are moving up their European tour dates from 2013 to this year in case of a sharp plunge or even dissolution of the single currency.

The UK press picked up the story from a Wall Street Journal interview Monday with the bands' manager. The story is notable for its extremely market-writer-nerdy headline and the quote comparing Metallica to Coca-Cola (KO).

When speed metal and alternative bands start hedging against currency risks it's time to bet the other way.

Think back to the dot-com days, when TV stars were being asked to pick their favorite stocks.

More recently, supermodel Gisele made headlines in November 2007 by shunning dollars for the rallying euro (while euros were the currency of choice in rap videos). The rate was about $1.45 at that point. Shorting the euro would've given you a chance to clean up all the way down to $1.20 in 2010 and even if you held dollars today you'd be at $1.35.

When celebrities get involved, the issue has jumped the shark. The flip side of this indicator is when Wall Street names suddenly start showing up at movie premieres. If a fund manager ever wins an Oscar, pour all you have into gold and take that gold to the hills.

So, barring Justin Bieber taking a Corzine-like bet on 5-year Italian bonds, your next move is to bet on a Europe resolution.

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