It’s almost psychotic, and quite manic. The market is up one day and down the next, and sometimes up and down in the same day. It’s as if the fact that U.S. companies are doing well is insignificant compared to eco-gyrations in Europe.

While it makes me scratch my head, it also makes me happy. Happy? Well, sure. When the market dips, I can buy stock very attractively. If the stock was attractive before the dip, it’s downright irresistible when the price goes down. And the price goes down not because the stock is less valuable, it goes down because of global perception, or, perhaps a better descriptor: media global perception.  

If Europe wants to be be a global player, it really needs to have a tied-together economy based on the euro. The United States of Europe makes sense in every way, except for pride in one’s individual country and resulting patriotism.

If Europe wants to take a page from our book, U.S. states all have identities (if you want to see raw patriotism, go to the Oklahoma vs. Texas football game, or should I mention Oklahoma vs. Nebraska?)

So, I suspect that it’s possible for the countries of Europe to cooperate economically and monetarily and still retain the unique flavor that makes a nation Italian, German or Greek.     The problem is that some countries are better economically than others. The answer is probably a more uniform set of economic rules, and the Europeans seem to be trying to work on that, but it is hard.   

The decision will go one way or the other. Rules-based economic and monetary policy will win, or the euro will fail and Europe will drift backwards. The sunny countries are likely to suffer and the seasonal ones – Germany, Scandinavia, England and France -may ultimately be super-producers.  

Speaking of squirrels, the business of gathering nuts and storing them for tough times is always important, yes?  In Greece and Italy and a few other countries maybe the governments think that winter never comes. Germany always now seems to know about winter.   

Have a great week, and remember to store some nuts for winter.