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What if the European Union broke up—and nobody bothered to tell you about it? Well, some are speculating that it has already happened.
Of course, the modality of this breakup isn't an ostentatious Inverse Maastricht Treaty. There have been no ribbon cuttings—nor televised photo ops of smiling finance ministers walking across a national border.
There hasn't even been the kind of somber debate, often heard on BBC News or C-SPAN, hashing out the various merits and disadvantages of such proposal.
It just happened—in the course of doing business.
As I observed in a piece about the possibility of a looming fiscal crisis in the United States: "The most powerful force in the universe isn't love: It's the bond markets."
So, how have the bond markets in Europe been driving a breakup inside the Union that few outside the world of sovereign finance have noticed?
In London, the Financial Times blog Alphaville has been exploring just such an idea.
The escalating debt crisis on the eurozone periphery is starting to contaminate the creditworthiness of Germany and the core states of monetary union.