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Friday December 14, 2007 - 11:50:56 GMT
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European Market Update: Euro-Zone CPI Breaks "Worrying" Level


· GE Nov Final CPI: M/M 0.5% v 0.4%e || Y/Y 3.1% v 3.0%e

· GE Nov Final CPI Harmonized: M/M 0.5% v 0.5%e || Y/Y 3.3% v 3.3%e

· FR Nov BOF Business Sentiment: 105 v 107e

· SP Nov CPI: M/M 0.7% v 0.7%e || Y/Y 4.1% v 4.1%e

· SP Nov Core CPI: M/M 0.5% v 0.5%e || 3.2% v 3. 2%e

· SP Nov Harmonized CPI: M/M 0.7% v 0.7%e || Y/Y 4.7% v 4. 7%

· SP Oct Current Account: -€8.7B v -€6.7B prior

· EU Nov CPI: M/M 0.5% v 0.5%e || Y/Y 3.1% v 3.0%e || Core Y/Y 1.9% v 2. 0%e


· BOF Cuts Q4 GDP forecast from 0.6% to 0.5%

· BOF Forecasts average FY07 growth of 1. 9%

· EU Juncker: Market turmoil to continue for the time being into 2008

· EU Juncker: The crisis will impact the European economy

· EU Juncker: Strong Euro impacts sectors differently

· BOE Lomax: Growth has been strong || Inflation has come down;

· BOE Lomax: Economy has only just started to slow down

· BOE Lomax: Cannot forecast mortgage rates

· BOE Lomax: BOE auctions have been received quite well

· BOE Lomax: Things are not as bad as they have been painted

· ECB Mersch: Stands ready to act to counter price risks

· ECB Mersch: It is important that inflation expectations remain anchored

· ECB Mersch: Growth risks are on the downside

· BOE Barker: Risks remain plentiful at this time

· BOE Barker: Weaker GBP good for manufacturing sector

· BOE Barker: Companies Still Optimistic Even with market turmoil

· BOE Barker: Economy is not returning to high inflation conditions

· BOE Barker: Public confidence in monetary policy remains strong

· BOE Barker: Manufacturing companies are doing quite well

· BOE Barker: There are a lot of risks at the moment

· GE BGA Group: Expects ECB to raise rates by up to 50bps from the summer of 2008

· GE BGA Group: Sees the Euro topping $1.50 in the longer term

· GE BGA Group: Cuts its 2008 export growth forecast from 8% to 5%

· GE BGA Group: Sees market turmoil and high Euro dampening exports

· IT Confindustria: Boosts 2007 Italian growth forecast from 1.7% to 1.8%

· IT Confindustria: Cuts 2008 Italian growth forecast from 1.3% to 1.0%


· On the commodity front crude oil futures are trading higher in the session. The IEA released its monthly repot overnight, in which it cut its 2007 OPEC demand forecast by 100K bpd, and boosted its 2008 forecast by 100K bpd. The IEA also said that $90/barrel oil means that the market is still on edge for the winter period, but noted that winter oil supply prospects have clearly improved. Elsewhere Goldman Sachs raised its view on the US refiners from a neutral rating to attractive.

· There were a lot of comments overnight. Most of the commentary from the ECB's Mersch was in line with the recent ECB rhetoric. Mersch reinforced the ECB's 'ready to act if risks materialize' attitude. Comments from the BOE's Lomax were somewhat dovish noting that a slowdown in growth has only began to set in, however Lomax also highlighted once again that we are in a period of uncertainty. The BOE's Barker said overnight that risks remain, but added that the economy is not returning to an inflationary environment. Elsewhere the German based BGA Exporters Group forecasted that the Euro above $1.50 in the long-term, and also forecasted that the ECB would raise rates by up to 50bps from the summer of 2008. The BGA forecast is interesting in light of other forecasts this week. Recall the disparity between the IFO and IFW research groups in Germany: the IFO forecasted a 25bps cut in 2H of 2008, while the IFW forecasted the ECB on hold through 2009.

· The session was light on the data front overnight. Notably the y/y reading on German and Euro-Zone CPI releases were above 3.0%, which has been cited as a “worrying level” by some central bank officials. Spanish CPI data was on the mark, while French business sentiment declined, but remained within its recent range.

· Fixed income futures are trading lower in the session as inflation data in Europe seems to be worsening. Market participants speculate that perhaps the ECB will have to take action despite the current market uncertainty. Next week will be a quiet week in terms of treasury action as there is no new supply scheduled in the Euro-Zone or the UK, and redemptions run thin as well.

· On the currency front the USD continues to exhibit some broad based strength, hitting fresh six-week highs against both the Euro and the Franc. German inflation data failed to curb Dollar momentum, while the usual sovereign Euro-buyers have yet to be seen on the current dip in price action. The stronger Dollar has been complimented by weaker gold, while commodity related pairs softer due to lower metal prices, ignoring the rather contained rally in oil prices.


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