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Friday June 20, 2008 - 10:45:41 GMT
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Forex Blog - European Market Update: Swiss Producer & Import Prices Slightly Ahead


·GE May Producer Prices: M/M 1.0% v 0.9%e || Y/Y 6.0% v 5.8%e

·FR Q1 Final Wages: 1.1% v 1.1%e

·SZ May Producer & Import Prices: M/M 1.2% v 0.9%e || Y/Y 3.9% v 3.6%e

·IT Apr Industrial Orders: M/M 1.2% v 0. 4%e || Prior revised from -0.8% to -0.5% |||| Y/Y 12.8% v 4.7%e

·IT Apr Industrial Sales: M/M 2.2% v 1.4%e || Prior revised from -1.6% to -1.5% |||| Y/Y 13.9% v -4.3% prior

·IT May Trade Balance Non-EU: -€1.77B v -€1.78B prior


·In equity news overnight Lehman cut its earnings estimates for the European Banking Sector, noting that European banks face extended revenue weakness. Lehman also said that UBS [UBSN.SZ] may post Q2 charges of $5.5B. Kloeckner [KCO.GE] guided FY08 sales up “at least 10%,” implying “at least €6.93B” below expectations of €7.22B. The company noted that its acquisition-based strategy remains the focus in 2008.

·In the newspapers the Wall Street Journal wrote overnight that CIE Siderurgica Nacl (CSN) may sell a stake in its iron ore unit to a consortium which includes
China's sovereign wealth fund. According to Expansion Acconia [ANA. SP] and ACS [ACS.SP] won a $1.5B Canadian contract.

·In energy news overnight
Venezuela's President Chavez said that his country will not send oil to European countries that pursue the anti-immigration directive. Morgan Stanley commented on China's fuel price increase. Morgan Stanley believes that the action will not lead to lower demand because it was aimed at providing financial assistance to oil refiners and power companies. The Nigerian Oil Minister said that he sees Royal Dutch Shell's [RDSA.UK] Bonga Field back online "very soon". The minister also noted that long-term supply concern is driving oil speculation. Saudi Arabian officials said overnight that they remain committed to stability of oil markets, adding that they seek a balance of supply and demand. Officials reiterated their end-2009 target production rate of 12.5M bpd.

·In fixed income related news, according to the Wall Street Journal the Fed and SEC are nearing a joint oversight agreement for US investment banks. Under the plan both bodies would be able to share

·The USD drifted lower during the European session on Friday as Commodities continued to be the real focus. Oil was steady following
China's announced price increase for retail fuel prices. The NY Times reported that Israel carried out major military exercise earlier this month that seemed directed at taking out Iran's nuclear facilities. OIL and Crude were both marginally firmer. The CHF was a bit firmer on safe-haven flows and aided by May import price data. The USD/CHF is at 1.04 while the EUR/CHF hovered around the 1.6190 level. Dealers noted that various stories have been reported earlier this month that Israel was perhaps preparing for a strike at Iran's enrichment program.

·On the speaker front the Bank of Canada's Carney said overnight that the BOC's current policy is appropriate to achieve the central bank's 2.0% CPI target. Carney noted that the BOC can achieve their inflation target with a flexible FX rate, adding that risks to inflation are evenly balanced. Carney reiterated that inflation may breach 3.0% in 2008, and said that he sees more disinflationary impact from the strong CAD. Insee revised
France's Q2 GDP estimate to 0.2% from 0.3%, noting that France's 2008 inflation is seen peaking at 3.6%. Insee forecasts that France's inflation rate will drop to 2.8% by December, and forecasted 2008 GDP growth of 1.6%. The ECB's Bini Smaghi said in the Financial Times that commodity prices are a long-run problem. According to the Brussels Summit Statement European Leaders say food and oil price measures must be short- term, noting that second round wage and price effects should be avoided.

·*** NOTES ***

·According to the New York Times citing American officials a military exercise carried out by Israel appears to have been a rehearsal for a bombing attack on nuclear facilities in Iran. As Iranian defiance on the nuclear front continues further developments on the geopolitical front may be worth watching.

·Reminder that it is triple witching day today, therefore we could see increased volatility.


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