-(IT) Italian Feb Industrial Production M/M: -3.5% v -1.5%e; Y/Y: -20.7% v
-17.5%e, NSA Y/Y: -23.7% v -21.0%e
- (UK) March PPI Input nsa M/M: 1.0% v 0.9%e, Y/Y: -0.4% v -0.7%e; (weakest Y/Y
reading since April 2007)
- (UK) March PPI Output M/M: 0.2% v 0.1%e; Y/Y: 2.0% v 2.1%e (weakest Y/Y
reading since Jul 2007)
- (UK) March PPI Output Core M/M: % v 0.1%e, Y/Y: % v 3.1%e
- (UK) Feb Visible Trade Balance: -Â£7.3B v-Â£7.6Be; Total Trade Balance: -Â£3.25B
- (GE) Feb Industrial Production M/M: -2.9% v -3.0%e; Y/Y: -20.6% v -21.7%e
- European equity indices opened to the upside this morning, taking their cue
from Asian markets, boosted by confirmation of the Japanese stimulus package
and a NYT report indicating that all major US banks will pass the 'stress
tests.' Reports that Barclays had completed arrangements to sell its iShares
unit (while maintaining 20% holding) moved financials higher whilst miners and
basic resources were buoyed by a strong 2008 production report out of Vedanta
ResourcesMarkets reacted negatively to the ECB monthly report, which
re-iterated the likelihood of negative inflation in 2009 before reversing their
losses settling into positive territory with key event risks in the form of US
same stores sales and the BoE's interest rate decision on the horizon. Volumes
are extremely thin ahead of the Easter break.
- The German Govt announced a voluntary takeover offer Hypo Real estate
(HRX.GE) offering holders â‚¬1.39/shr, notably below the â‚¬3 sought by major shareholder
JC Flowers. The German Govt agency Soffin stated it was seeking 100% ownership
of the firm and aiming to complete the offer swiftly, and that the offer is not
dependant on the fulfillment of certain conditions. JC Flowers responded,
expressing a clear preference to remain a shareholder in the firm, but that it
would consider the offer.
- ING [INGA.NA] has traded higher following a strategic update. The Dutch
financial services giant announced it would increase its divestments in
non-core activities to between â‚¬6 to â‚¬8B from the originally intended â‚¬2 to 3B,
conditions permitting . It plans to unwind of 10 to 15 businesses over the
coming years, including its Ukrainian operations. Its â‚¬1B cost reduction
initiative announced on 18 Feb is well on track, with over half of the planned
7,000 workforce reduction realized. Ing announced it plans to operate its Bank
and Insurer units separately under one Group umbrella.
- The ECB monthly report echoed statements made by the Ecb's Trichet following
last week's decision to cut refi and deposit rates by 25bps, forecasting
temporary negative inflation in the middle of 2009 and a gradual recovery in
2010 The Report stated that price pressures subdued as largely a result of
lower commodity prices.
- The ECB's Bonello confirmed the ECB was studying alternative measures, and
that he expected an announcement on said measures at the May meeting. Bonello
stated that some signs were emerging that the interest rate transmission mechanism
was beginning to work
- The ECB's Trichet spoke early in the session, notably stating that he felt
nationalization of some banks was inevitable. Trichet stated that he felt
governments had been too slow in effectively implementing measures they had
announced and called on measures agreed at the G-20 to be adopted quickly.
Trichet noted that he supported comments from US
officials including Bernanke, Geithner and President Obama on a strong US
- The ECB's Nowotny made some provocative statements, noting that he was
against cutting the refi rate below 1%, but that such an idea was open to
debate. In the most forthright comments on the topic thus far, Nowotny said he
was in favor of the ECB purchasing corporate bonds and also that the ECB could
extend its liquidity to banks immediately.
- Speaking in Japan,
non voting member of the FOMC Fisher stated that he saw a return to growth in
2010, noting that he had observed a slight revival in credit markets, with
commercial paper issuance improving. Fisher noted that no-one could have
predicted the complete reversal in the global economy in 2008.
- Further details of the confirmed Japanese Â¥15.4T stimulus package surfaced.
The MoF's Sugimoto revealed that the measures would include tax cuts valued at
Â£100B, whilst Japansese PM Aso said the measures would help to boost Japan's
GDP by Â¥120T by 2020
- The BoE is widely expected to keep its interest rate on hold at today's MPC
meeting, with markets expecting some form of pledge on commitment to the
recently adopted asset purchase operation and quantitative easing. However
reports surfaced in the UK press stating the BoE was considering forcing banks
to split retail and investment bank operations, similar to Glass- St
-- In fixed income, Italy sold â‚¬9.05B in BTPs ranging in maturity from 2013 to
2029, and the supply has weighed on Bunds. UST futures are also lower ahead of
the treasury's $18B 10y note auction, whilst Gilts have managed to stay in
positive territory in light volumes.
- In commodities JP Morgan analysts raised 2009 price targets for metals, with
Gold raised to $960/oz v $831/oz prior, Silver raised to $13.9/oz v $11/pz
prior and Copper raised to $3.34K/t v $3.16k/t prior
- In currencies increased risk appetite has seen a weaker USD and a weaker JPY,
with the notable expection of the GBP, which suffered from weak PPI figures .
GBP/USD is down almost 50 pips at 1.4668. USD/JPY is back above the 100 level
whilst EUR/USD is trading at the unchaged mark of 1.3280 at the time of writing
- 7:00 (CA) Canadian March Unemployment Rate: % v 8.0%e ; Net Change in
Employment: k v -50.0ke
- 7:00 (UK) BOE Rate Decision: No change, the current bank rate is 0.50%
- 8:30 (CA) Canadian Feb International Merchandise Trade: -C$1.2Be v -C$1.0B
- 8:30 (CA) Canadian Feb New Housing Price Index M/M: % v -0.5%e
- 8:30 (US) Feb Trade Balance (last -$36B)
- 8:30 (US) March Import Price Index (last m/m -0.2%, y/y -12.8%)
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