People are freaking out about Italy and the possibility that it's actually going to be the Italians that sink the Euro.
Obama is leading the way by preaching against the sequester cuts. But he wants to raise some taxes. If Italy starts to spend it will be without any new taxes -- how do you keep taxing the rich or corporations in Italy when Italy is already at 20%+ unemployment? Europe is weak. France is also becoming a drag. I was in France last fall on a driving vacation and the tolls on main roads are pretty expensive as is fuel. People there have stopped buying new cars -- 90% of the cars on the road are sub-compact. The economy is so slow that young people now strive for a smart phone which can cost close to the carry of a small car. You have to pay something like $1200 Euros for mandatory driving classes and elaborate testing such that about 40% fail the test on the first try and have to pay more to re-test. It's a joke done to feed a government payroll machine. BTW -- many French drivers are serious tail-gators who cut in and out of traffic.
So I'm concerned that IBM is vulnerable to EU problems -- and lower EU demand felt elsewhere. Regardless of what happens in Italy the Euro could get walk again -- against an already weakening Yen. There may be a lot more bonds issued and bought and money printed. Makes hard assets more attractive.