Though the daily market gyrations might indicate otherwise, realization is beginning to creep in that the European debt crisis and its effect on the U.S. will not take days, weeks or months to unwind—but years.
How many years is up for debate, but a common range bandied about among investment experts is two to five CNBC is reporting.
That prolonged time frame — which entails the period it will take to reduce government spending, come up with workable debt repayment plans, and, most likely, witness the contagion that will follow — means that the market tumult that the crisis has brought also won’t be going away anytime soon, either.
"Despite rebounding market confidence over the past week, the recent worsening in the larger sovereign bond markets of Europe suggests greater risk to the U.S. and other regions," Steven C. Wieting, Citigroup’s managing director of economic and market analysis, said in a research note. "The impact of Europe is no longer a question of isolating weakness to peripheral countries, but one of how Europe’s instability/austerity is isolated from the larger world."
The increasingly sober view of how deep the European problem will run has come with the realization that relatively tiny Greece is not alone with its sovereign debt problems.