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Tuesday February 3, 2009 - 11:26:07 GMT
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Forex Blog - European Market Update: Cautious ratings outlook on all fronts, from Sovereign to Corporate

Today 06:07am

European Market Update: Cautious ratings outlook on all fronts, from Sovereign to Corporate



- (GE) German Dec Retail Sales M/M: -0.2% v0.5%e; Y/Y: -0.3% v 0.5%e 

- (SZ) Swiss Dec Trade Balance: CHF 0.2B v CHF2.25B prior; Exports M/M: -13.0% v 4.9% prior; Imports M/M: -7.2% v 2.3% prior

- (NO) Norway Jan PMI: 40.8 v 40.0e 

- (SP) Spain Jan Unemployment: 198.8K v244.8Ke 

- (SP) Spain Jan Consumer Confidence: 50.1 v 49.0e

- (UK) Jan PMI construction: 34.5 v 29.0e

- (EU) Euro-zone Dec PPI M/M: -1.3% v-1.2%e; Y/Y: 1.8% v 2/1%e

- (BZ) Brazil Industrial Production M/M: -12.4% v -8.1%e; Y/Y:-14.5% v -10.3%e 


- Equities: Fortis [FORB.BE] Holder Ping An confirmed its intention to vote against company asset sale to BNP, noting it sought something better || Kuka [KU2.GE} Reports Q4 Rev €342.1M inline with estimates of €341.8Me. It noted that Says effects of crisis to substantially impact 2009 results || Roche [ROG.SZ]Interim results from a phase III ATLAS study of Avastin, and Tarceva Combo shows improve survival in treatment of advanced lung cancer || Merck KgAA [MRK.GE] Safinamide Met Primary Endpoint In Phase III Trial |||| Heidelberger Druck [HDD.GE] Reported Q3 Net loss of €24M which was better than the loss €62M expected. Revenues were €750M above consensus of €714.9M. New Orders were €560M versus €578M estimates. The company expected drop in FY09 sales, sees net loss. Incoming orders for third quarter were lower in all regions as a result of financial market crisis and that the uncertain economic situation looks set to continue || Lufthansa [LHA.GE] Guided FY08 Op Profit €1.3B v €1.1Be; Noting that the demand slowdown was offset by fuel price decline and cost cutting. It stated that the market environment has evolved poorly and saw significantly higher than usual risks.| SAS [SAS.SW] Reported Q4 Net loss of SEK2.77B versus consensus estimates of loss SEK542.8M. Revenues were SEK12.92B below expectations of SEK13.65B. the company announced the e; launching of a SEK6B rights issue. It noted that it would reduce its workforce by 5.6K jobs (about 23% of workforce) through a process of divestiture or outsourcing. It announced the divesting of its Spanair unit, which account for nearly 3K employees. The Norway's Trade Min says its govt would provide NOK800M for company share issue || Imperial Tobacco [IMT.UK] Provided interim management statement in which trading was in line with expectations. It did note it was not immune from current economic situation but 'resilient' noting it maintained momentum in first-quarter || Vodafone [VOD.UK] Provides interim management statement with its Q3 revenues at £10.47B versus £10.29B expected. It Guided FY09 revenues in a range of £40.6 to £41.5B compared to estimates of £40.23Be (co prior range was £38.8B to £39.7B) || Sunsea 7 [SUB.NO] Reported Q4 Op profit of$73M versus $85M consensus. Revenues were $583.6M just below expectations of $603.6M. it noted that its UK North Sea sector, US Gulf of Mexico were hit by project delays and cancellations. It saw indications of decreasing costs in supply chain and was focused on reducing costs. It saw no significant deterioration in subsea market sector but that thes outlook remained uncertain for medium term || Babcock & Brown [BAB.UK] Provided interim Management Statement in which trading conditions continue to be strong and Group performance remained in line with expectations || Carpetright [CPR.UK] Interim Management Statement with its 13 week sales -9.0% y/y || Swedish Match [SWMA.SW] Announces jv with Philip Morris International to commercialize smokefree tobacco products || Scania [SCVB.SW] Reported Q4 Net SEK1.5B compared to estimates of SEK1.7B. Revenues were SEK22.7B slightly above the SEK22.3B consensus. It was cutting 2K production jobs by end of Q1 |Separaely; Scania's Board recommended that its shareholders not accept Porsche's mandatory offer. Company added that its long-term prospects were excellent and that the Porsche's offer did not reflect long term value of company || Audi unit of Volkswagen [VOW.GE] Audi CEO commented that the unit was committed to avoid job cuts but added there could be no growth in its FY09 deliveries. Thus the company is bracing for a very 'difficult' 2009

- Speakers: BoJ Gov Shirakawa: Share purchase's objective is to provide a 'safety net'; notes it may not increase bank lending. The fundamental reason is to help stabilize Japan's financial system but noted that share holding remained a significant risk for banks. He noted that the share purchase was not aimed at boosting the stock market and that no request at this time to purchase shares immediately || S&P stated that Australia's AAA sovereign rating has tolerance for deficits and added that the Australian Gov't balance sheet remained quite strong || German Retail Group HDE expected that 2009 retail sales could be down a real 1-2%. It forecasted a stable first half of 2009 but saw weaker sales during the second half of year || Indian Trade Min Nath stated that India's GDP to grow 7% this year and commented that the economy would be driven by domestic demand || Russia Fin Min: Reserve funds would cover any budget shortfall during 2010-2011 period

- In Currencies: The session was marked by consolidation on Tuesday. EUR/USD remained in a 1.28 to 1.29 range with Eastern European selling pressure capping upside potential for now. The data saw a German retail sales contraction and contributed to the recessionary concerns || Russian central bank faces a test of Ruble defense as it moved closer to the 41 ceiling imposed just over a week ago. || Keidanren (business group) Managing Director Kubota reportedly said that Japan should intervene to weaken the yen and commented that domestic exporters need USD/JPY rate of 100-110. the yen's rise was the most critical problem for exporters.

- In Energy: Iran has reportedly launched its first home-made satellite into orbit || British Petroleum [BP.UK] Reported its first quarterly loss in seven years. Q4 loss came in at -$0.17 versus $1.10e (unclear if comparable) and revenues were R $61.1B below estimates of $72.94B. Its 4Q results were impacted by a $700M TNK-BP jv loss on excise duty andimpairments || Areva [CEI.FR] Awarded €5B EDF uranium enrichment contract

- Fixed Income: Equity softness has sent European Government bond prices higher in early trade, despite an impending flood of supply expected from France and Spain later in the week . Better buying in the short end has driven the yield curve towards its steepest levels; with the 2-10y yield spread stabilizing around 181bps in Germany, its highest level since at least Feb 2004. ||Greek government bonds finally received some much needed respite, albiet superficial, with the yield spread on the Greek 10y moving below 250bps after whispers suggesting the launch of a new 10y were refuted by the Government debt agency. Meanwhile it emerged that that talks between the Irish government, unions and employer groups aimed at achieving €2B in cost cutting measures had stalled, prompting S&P and Moody's to issue cautious statements on the country's outlook. The UK sold £3.75B 2y Gilts with better than expected results.

- Credit Crisis: Swedish Government announced its intention to spend SEK50B to boost banks capital base noting that the plan targeted increase lending. The Stability fund would be used to finance the program ||ABN Amro Analyst commented that the markets show signs of USD shortage due to deleveraging and stated that the markets are expecting a further narrowing of LIBOR-OIS spread || Spain Minister: Govt losing patience with banking institutions; may be forced to take action

*** NOTES ***

- European bourses saw their early gains erode as rumblings of profit warnings circulated among dealing desks with Tui mentioned as a candidate. 

- Sovereign risks continue to remain on the front burner after the IMF revised Korea 2009 GDP outlook from +.5% to -4.0% prompting downgrade rumors for that country. 

- Markets looking ahead to ECB and BOE policy decisions on Thursday and various U.S. employment reports scattered between Wed through Fri. Australia's RBA cuts its Cash Rate target by100bp to 3.25%. Governments continue to unveil new stimulus plan to shore up its banking systems and domestic demand

- Looking Ahead: 

-10:00 (US) Pending Home Sales M/M: 0.0% expected v -4.0% prior

- 10:00 (TU) Turkey Jan Consumer Prices M/M 0.2% expected v -3.5% prior; Y/Y: 9.4% expected v 10.1% prior

- 10:00 (TU) Turkey Jan Producer Prices M/M 0.1% expected v -0.4% prior; Y/Y: 7.8% expected v 8.1% prior

- (FR) French Dec Producer Prices M/M: -1.1% expected v -1.9% prior; Y/Y: 0.3% expected v 1.6% prior

- (UK) Jan HBOS House Prices M/M: -1.6% expected v -2.2% prior; 3M/Y: -18.4% expected v -1.2% prior

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