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Forex Blog - European Market Update: Russia downplays potential corporate debt restructuring adding that it remains only a concept at this time; UBS CEO vows return to profitability in 2009

Today 06:08am

European Market Update: Russia downplays potential corporate debt restructuring adding that it remains only a concept at this time; UBS CEO vows return to profitability in 2009


- (EU) Dec Monster Employment Index:106 v 132 in Dec; Steepest MoM decline on record

- (FR) French Dec Industrial Production M/M: -1.8% v -1.8%e; Y/Y: -11.1% v-10.7%e

- (FR) French Dec Manufacturing Production M/M: -2.8% v-2.2%e ;Y/Y: -14.0% v -12.8%e

- (SZ) Swiss Jan CPI M/M: -0.8% v-0.4%e; Y/Y: 0.1% v 0.6%e

- (DE) Danish Jan CPI M/M: -0.3% v -0.4%e; Y/Y: 1.8% v 1.7%e

- (SW) Swedish Industrial Production M/M: -5.1% v -1.2%e; Y/Y: -20.3% v -12.3%e

- (SW) Swedish Industrial Orders M/M: -8.7% v -4.3 prior; Y/Y: -22.0% v -26.2% prior

- (IT) Italian Dec Industrial Production M/M: -2.5% v -2.0%e; Y/Y: -14.3% v-11.2%

- (NO) Norwegian Jan CPI M/M: % v -0.6%e; Y/Y: % v 1.9%e

- (NO) Norway Jan CPI Underlying M/M: -0.5% v -0.7%e, Y/Y: 2.8% v 2.6%e

- (NO) Norway Jan Producer Prices(including oil) M/M: 0.5% v -5.1% prior; Y/Y: 3.9% v 6.0% prior

- (GE) German VDMA: Dec Machine orders down 40% y/y

- (UK) Dec Visible Trade Balance -£7.4B v -£8.1Be; Trade balance Non EU: -£4.2B v -£4.8Be; Total Trade balance: -£3.6B to -£4.3Be

- (SA) South Africa Manufacturing Production M/M: -4.0% v -1.2%e ; Y/Y: -7.0% v -3.6%e


- Equities: Main features: UBS [UBSN.SZ: Reported Q4 Net loss CHF8.1B above market expectations of a loss CHF6.25B. The firm created two new divisions and structural changes. Revenues came in negative at CHFB4.08B compared to CHF3.35B consensus. The firm's Q4 Tier 1 ratio was 11.5% compared to 9.5% y/y. It stated that it had an encouraging start to the year as and net new money was positive in January in both the wealth management and asset management businesses. The Q4 Net new money outflows gor Global Wealth and Banking was CHF58.2B and Net new money outflows Global Assets at CHF27.6B. Swiss market regulators allowed CHF1.8B in FY08 bonuses. UBS CEO stated that the firm UBS would return to profitability in 2009 || Cable & Wireless [CW.UK] Provided interim statement in which it reaffirmed its EBITDA guidance of at least £780M for FY09 compared to £783M expected. it confirmed that it is trading in line with expectations helped by the weaker GBP currency. || Former BoE member Julius commented that UK GDP growth to resume in 2010 and added that he would leave BoE interest rates at 1%. Julius stated that the asset markets should bottom out at end of year

- Equities: E.ON [EOAN.GE]Firm saw a 7-8% increase in 2008 earnings (reported €70.8B in FY2007) and expected a €1.5B US and €1.8B European impairment charges to reduce its FY08 Net |||| Singapore Airlines [SIAL.SI] Reported Q3 Net S$337M v S$312Me, Rev S$4.16B- Reports Q3 Load Factor 78.5% v 81.3% y/y. The airline expected demand for transportation to remain weak in 2009 and would adjust schedules and capacity to deal with demand shift || Peugeot [UG.FP] CEO: Firm would have cut R&D investments without govt bailout plan; expects a 20% drop in sales this year- Says banks have not been lending to co. for a few weeks now- Sees 2009-2010 as a year of continuing challenges || Hochschild Mining [HOC.UK] Reportedly to acquire Mai's interest in San Jose for $70M- Reportedly is interested in 49% stake held by Mai in San Jose- States that proposal expires on Feb 11, 2009 at 17:00GMT ||Tele2 [TEL2B.SW] Reported Q4 Net profit of SEK896M in line with estimates of SEK894M. EBITDA came in at SEK2.17B versus SEK2.13B estimates , while revenues were SEK10.31B which was slightly better than the SEK10.13B expected. The company entered into 3-yr revolving credit line for SEK12B and noted that it had 10.2M customers in
Russia; expansion in Russia set to continue || Handelsbanken [SHBA.SW] Reported Q4 net profit of SEK4.56B above consensus estimates of SEK2.87B. It operating profit came in at SEK5.22B better than the 3.85B estimates. || Nordea [NDA.SW] Reported Q4 Net income €638M in-line with estimates of €634Me. Operating profit came in at €781M versus €899.4M estimates. Revenues were €2.25B compared to €2.09B estimates. The firm Announces a €2.5B rights issue and a cut in 2008 dividend || Qinetiq [QQ.UK] Reported 9-month revenues of £1.13B versus £964M year ago. It noted that trading performance was in line with expectations and that the Board remained confident about the outlook for the Group. || CSR.UK Reports Q4 Op profit $1.7M compared to 49.4M y/y. Reveunes came in at $140.1M versus $142M expectations. It plans to to merge with SIRF. CSR guided Q1 revenues in a range of $65-85M compared to $90.0M estimates. || Chaucer Holdings [CHU.UK] Stated that it had received number of approaches which could potentially lead to offers. It board will meet to consider the proposals. || Douglas [DOU.GE] Reports Q1 Net €87.6M v 89.7Me, Rev €1.12B v €1.12B estimates. It reaffirmed its FY09 view of pretax €100M to €150M v €128.6Me and sales growth in range of 3% to 6% || Gas Natural [GAS.SP] Reports Q4 Net €252M v €247Me, EBITA €638M v €645Me, Rev €3.84B v €2.76B y/y || Energie Baden-Wuerttemb [EBK.GE] Reported FY08 Net €872M below consensus of €1.02B. Revenues were €16.3B v 14.93B expected. It guided FY09 earnings in line with FY08 figures ||

- Speakers: Russia Head of Regional Bank Association: Debt restructuring only a concept at this time; no plan has been submitted to Gov't. He noted that around $400B was Russian firms total foreign debt through 2013. He added that Russian Government reserves and wealth funds have $600B 'cushion'. || Russia Fin Min Kudrin stated that it did not plan to restructure Russian banks or corporate debt || RBA Governor Stevens stated that Central banks must work with unconventional tools as rates cuts not working normally. The reluctance of banks to lend was damaging global financial || Ex-BoE Member Wadhwani urged BoE to move rapidly towards zero interest rates and commence BoE should start quantitative easing soon|| Ex-BoE member Julius stated that UK GDP growth to resume in 2010. Called for pause on rate cuts to 'gauge reaction', would leave rate at 1% level. He noted that the asset markets should bottom out at end of year and that the UK had limited further scope on fiscal policy || India Fin Min Deputy Governor: To borrow additional INR460B by the end of March || India Commerce Minister Nath stated that there was a need to further cut interest rates to free up available cash and shore up economy|| South Africa Mining Minister: S. Africa needs additional 40K MW to sustain growth

- In Currencies: The Euro rebounded ahead of the European morning aided by the 'denial' of imminent corporate debt restructuring. The Russian Regional Bank Association head commented that the restructuring was only a concept while the Russian Fin Min added that there were no plans for any debt restructuring. The EUR/USD bounced from the 1.2830 level to test back above the 1.2960 level, where it consolidated throughout the morning. Overall sentiment of this Russian situation should keep EUR/USD pressured, particularly below its 1.3090 highs seen on Monday. Overall sentiment among dealing desks is whether one believes the Russian denials and continue to watch the 1.27 to 1.31 consolidation range. || The GBP was mildly softer from its opening levels in
Asia. Dealers took note of the drop in UK imports fell for a fifth consecutive month noting that the weaker import demand likely impacted by the GBP depreciation. || USD/CAD rallied above the 1.2330 level in the European morning. Dealers noted a 1.23 option expiration at the NY cut acting as a magnet in the session || Overall currency dealers noting that several themes that dominated the USD rally since Q4 have quietly muted. Baltic Dry Index has risen for the past 15 straight sessions to hit the 1,815 level compared to its low of 663 in December. Some of the sovereigns spread inside the Euro-Zone have narrowed against the German Bund.

- Fixed income: In fixed income, trade has been quiet ahead of formal announcements on the Geithner bank rescue plan. The
UK tapped £3.25B of the 4.5%2019 Gilts with the auction covered 1.75 times, lower than average in previous three auctions of 2.1. Austria sold €1.2B 202's with better than expected results. In addition to comments from the US Treasury Sec, focus shifts to $32B 3y treasury auction later in the day, the first round in a deluge of supply from the US this week

- In Energy: China to consider raising oil-price threshold from $40 to $60 in order to help oil industry companies ||Total [FP.FR] Signed an agreement with Libya's NOC to renew EPSAS for blocks C17, C137 || NYMEX Mar crude at $40.40 level, up over 90 cents. Traders cite the Senate passage of a procedural vote in the
US stimulus package as a catalyst.

- Credit Crisis: Fortis [FORB.BE] Vice Chairman Hessel reiterates concern that "no-vote" on firm break up could lead to insolvency according to a press interview. The Het Financielle Dagblad noted that that if firm was not broken up as planned, will be short €2.3B needed to finance current toxic assets. Back on Feb 7th it was reported that the company was working on plan to guarantee liquidity in the event shareholders oppose the state-engineered splitting of the group

*** NOTES ***

- The Russian corporate debt concerns and 'denial' were the main focus in the European morning. The USD saw its early strength erode away after
Russia commented that the debt restructuring was on a concept.

US market will focus on the Clarity provided in regards to the Geithner bank bailout plan awaited today.

- UBS reported large losses but vows a return to profitability

- Looking Ahead:

- 10:00 (US) Dec Wholesale Inventories : -0.7% expected, prior: -0.6%

- 10:00 (US) IBD/TIPP Economic Optimism: 44.0 expected, prior: 45.4 prior

- 11:00 (US) Treasury Sec Geithner to unveil Financial Rescue Plan

- 1:00 (US) Treasury to sell $32B in new 3y notes


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