- Equities: European equity markets opened on a mixed note. Financials rallied
on the back of news from Goldman Sachs in the New York
post-market and continued strength in the sector through the Asian session. US
German listed financial names (Citi and Bank of America traded up as much as
30%). A court ruling from Belgium
allowing all Fortis shareholders a vote in the this month's EGM strongly
supports the likelihood of a break up; shares of Fortis and BNP traded higher.
Despite this sector strength, the DAX30 opened negative and negative sentiment
from poorer than expected earnings out of Phillips weighed on healthcare
systems manufacturers. Markets continued their pre-holiday choppy nature as
4-days of market news is being digested in Europe. By
4:30EST, markets had shaken off Chinese data concerns and negative earnings
numbers making a sharp break into positive territory, reflecting gains of
approx 1% across the board || Goldman Sachs [GS] Reports Q1 $3.39 v $1.64e, R
$9.43B v $7.20Be, announces $5B Public Offering of Common Equity (about 7.6% of
market cap), confirms to use proceeds to repay All TARP funds borrowed. ||
British Telecom [BT.UK] reportedly seeking to cut an additional 10K jobs (9% of
workforce), reduce dividend by more than 50% -FT. Announcements to purportedly
come next month along with earnings results, at that time, BT may announce
Â£1.0B in write downs. ||Phillips [PHIA.NV] reported its second consecutive
loss, Q1 Net Loss was â‚¬59M v a loss ofâ‚¬25M expected, EBITA was a loss of â‚¬74M v
profit 35Me, and Sales were â‚¬5.08B v â‚¬5.16Be . By units: Healthcare Q1 sales
-2% y/y, Consumer lifestyle Q1 sales -25% y/y, Lighting Q1 sales -19% y/y. The
group expects no material change to markets in Q2. The CFO commented thatits
North American markets faired better than Euro markets in Q1. The company would
accelerate restructuring measures in the Q2 after its Q1 results missed analyst
- Speakers: Fed's Fisher reiterated the view that the US
economic data looked 'quite grim as Q1 GDP likely to contract at a 'very
dismal' rate'. He reiterated that the US
jobless rate could exceed 10% by end of the year. China
is not decoupling from US
economy, does not expect sharp declines in USD currency rates and saw a strong
case favoring the dollar based on capital returns. He believed that China
would do nothing to harm US
interests and that both countries have a symbiotic relationship. || ECB's
Orphanides commented that the risk of deflation had 'increased somewhat'
recently and could spur ECB moves after May policy meeting. He reiterated the
view that downward pressure on inflation into 2010. ECB must stay 'open and
flexible' over measures which could include asset purchases and longer
liquidity operations. Such moves could lower money market rates further. ||
Polish Central Banker Filar commented that perhaps the interest rate easing
cycle by MPC could be over. However, he saw no scope for higher interest rates.
|| Polish Central Banker Noga also stated that he saw steady interest rate
policy at next two MPC meetings || Spain's PM Zapatero commented that its Gov't
was ready to take additional stimulus measures if needed
- In Currencies: All eyes glued on upcoming Chinese data and the differing
opinions have been emerging from both the â€œofficial' and analyst fronts. The
pre-European session encountered some 'risk aversion', which aided both USD and
JPY positions. Dealers returned from a long weekend and grew 'edgy' over the
pending Chinese GDP data set for release on Thursday as catalyst. European
dealers were 'reacting' to earlier comments from Chinese PBoC advisor Fan that
it might take need additional 2-3 years to complete China's economic
adjustment. One investment house put out a research note that Premier Wen
seemed to indicate that China Industrial Production jumped 8.3% in March, which
would be above current consensus of 6.3%
- The EUR/USD tested below the 1.33 level to move back within its one-week
consolidation range of 1.31 to 1.3330 range. USD/JPY moving back below parity
to test 99.50 level.
- Fixed income: A relatively quiet start to the week in European fixed income
this morning , with no major economic data or supply Government bond markets
are range bound in thin volumes. Gilts have outperformed with the Bank of
England set to purchase Â£3B in 2020 - 2032 Gilts later in the session, with the
long end in particular benefiting, leading to a flatter UK
yield curve. Bunds have almost closed the gap on Treasuries after yesterday's
rally with the cash Bund yield at 3.19%, about 2pbs cheaper relative to
Treasuries on last weeks close at 33pbs. â‚¬ swap spreads are wider across the
curve with 2y swap spreads +2bps at 57bps and 10y swap spreads 2.4bps wider at
36bps. 3M Euribor fell another basis point to reach 1.00%
- In Energy: Dealers chatter focused on the topic that OPEC production cuts
have been hampered by Brazil
efforts. Dealers took notice of recent US Energy Dept stats which noted that
U.S. imports from the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries fell
818K/day, or 14% to 5.02M in January from a year earlier while imports from Brazil
more than doubled to 397K and Russia's
increased to 157K, a trend that continued in
February and March, according to data from each country. || Transneft [RNFP.RU]
Submitted request to raise oil transit tariffs by 4% || PetroChina [PTR]
According to CNPC, China
is targeting oil reserves to meet 90-100 days of demand. The report added that China
has started research regarding storing oil underground. Currently China's
3 oil majors have around 21 days worth of reserves. || Nippon Steel [5401.JP]
Reportedly settled a semi-soft coal price in which it would pay $80-85/ton in
2009 versus $240/ton last year
- Credit Crisis: S&P cuts Kingdom of Thailand sovereign rating by one-notch
to 'A-' from 'A'. it maintained a negative outlook ||S&P cuts its outlook Taiwan's
sovereign credit rating to Negative from Stable. S&P cited the weaker
fiscal position as a key factor in its decision. || German Spiegel magazine
looks at the concerns facing Russian banks. Article noted that in recent weeks,
senior Russian government ministers and officials have been striking an
increasingly optimistic note amid signs the economic situation in Russia
has stabilized. However despite the financial turmoil of recent months, no
major Russian bank has gone bust, and there have been minimal signs of
depositor panic. But in recent weeks, a chorus of doomsayers has been warning
the stability won't last. A "second wave" of the crisis is about to
they argue. The Russian government now appears to be taking the threat
*** NOTES and THEMES ***
- The current phase of improving risk appetite appeared to be hitting some
speed bumps despite guidance from Wells Fargo last week and Goldman Sachs
yesterday after the close. However, chatter circulating that that one bank has
failed the "stress tests" and could result in another potential
bailout package being put together to head off a crisis
- North Korea continued it bipolar ways as it again noted that current round of
discussions are useless and planned to resume nuclear development.
- The reserve currency discussion continues. Japan's Yosano noted that unlikely
any other currency other than USD key global currencyâ€¦but PBoC advisor Fan
commented that China, Japan and South Korea should establish a routine
mechanism to diversify the region's reserve currencies away from the dollar
- China March foreign direct investment (FDI) -9.5% y/y. All eyes glued on
upcoming Chinese data and the differing opinions have been emerging from both
the â€œofficial' and analyst fronts (see currency section)
- Reality check: Singapore Q1 GDP Y/Y -11.5% v -9.1% forecast. Lowers 09
forecasts. The Central Bank re-centered its currency policy band for a weak
SGDâ€¦but currency strengthens in session
- Dealers chatter focused on the topic that OPEC production cuts have been
hampered by Brazil
- Looking Ahead:
- 8:00 (PD) Polish March Money Supply M3 M/M:
0.3% expected v 1.4% prior
- 8:00 (PD) Polish Feb Current Account: -500
expected v -441 prior
8:30 (US) March PPI (last m/m 0.1%, y/y -1.3%, ex food & energy last m/m
0.2%, y/y 4.0%), - - 8:30 (US) March Advanced Retail Sales (last 0.1%, ex autos
- 10:00 (US) Feb Business Inventories (last -1.1%)
- 10:00 (UK) BoE to buy Â£3B 202 - 2032 Gilts
- 10: 30 (US) Fed's Evans speaks in Chicago
- 10:30 (US) Fed's 2013 to 2016 Coupon Purchase
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