Counterfeiters not even ripping off the euro anymore
Of all the bizarre economic indicators out there – and there are plenty – sometimes it is the world’s crooks that paint the best picture.
Late last year, while Research In Motion was in freefall, a headline out of New York reported not even crooks wanted a BlackBerry, spurning a good mugging if the target wasn’t handling an iPhone.
It was a goofy, isolated story, but then maybe it wasn’t. Unfairly, it was also a pretty good microcosm for the entire RIM descent.
In any case, of all the indices damning the crisis of the euro, perhaps we need look no further than how Europe’s counterfeiters see the currency.
According to the latest biannual report from the European Central Bank, even counterfeiters don’t want to touch the euro these days.
By the ECB’s numbers, counterfeiting of the euro is down in a big way (chart here). After the currency’s release on New Year’s Day, 2002, the number of fake euros pulled from circulation muddled along at a modest pace before a big spike beginning in 2008.
Much like the stock chart of RIM, in fact, euro counterfeiting rose to meteoric heights, only to drop precipitously in the past three years.
As the Eurozone debt crisis continues to drag, counterfeiting has crashed a further 44 per cent in the first half of 2012.
Certainly the euro may never dissolve, and most key nations may never return to their original currencies, but counterfeiters are hedging.
Rather than continue ripping off the bills, the market is telling crooks it may be best not to get stuck with unsellable merchandise.
By Jason Buckland, MSN Money