- In equities: European equity markets opened to the upside for the first time
in the trading week. Markets responded to a slew of corporate earnings in the
European pre-market and positive analyst actions regarding UK
based banking names. Strong earnings out of Royal Dutch Shell (RDSA.UK),
Siemens (SIE.GE) and Banco Santandar (SAN.SP) buoyed market sentiment.. Results
from SAP (SAP.GE), and ArcelorMittal (MT.NV) were shaken off in early trades as
the names moved into the positive arena. Results from ArcelorMittal moved the
Euro based steel sector into positive territory since Monday's post market Q1
out of US Steel (X) that had added significant weight to the steel names. Gains
were not lasting and market chatter of further capacity reductions and the
possibility of a further rights issue sent ArcelorMittal back into negative
territory. As fears of the fatality level of Swine Flu outbreaks seems to be
passing, many of the names severally beaten are showing some recovery including
airlines (BAY.UK) (AF.FR) while gains in the mixed pharma sector over the
previous two sessions are being paired in initial trades. Overall risk appetite
had increased with markets remaining broadly positive and by 5:00EST trading up
between 0.50% and 1.00%. With Crude futures over $50/bbl, energy and commodity
names have snapped a two-day losing streak during the European morning.
- In specific equity news: Royal Dutch Shell [RDSA.UK] Reports Q1 Net $3.49B v
$2.47Be, Rev $58.22B v $53.85Be, Dividend $0.42 (+5% y/y). Stated that upstream
oil and gas volumes were impacted by ongoing security challenges in Nigeria,
OPEC quota restrictions and weakening industrial demand for natural gas.
Refinery intake and marketing and chemicals sales volumes were impacted by the
weak economic environment across all regions. Gearing 6.6% v 1.9% y/y. ||
Siemens [SIE.GE] Reports Q2 Net â‚¬962M v â‚¬974Me, Q2 Op profit main units â‚¬1.84B
v â‚¬1.65Be; Rev â‚¬18.96B v â‚¬18.7Me, guides FY to exceed â‚¬6.6B year-ago level v
â‚¬6.33Be (â‚¬8-8.5B previous guidance), Q2 Orders â‚¬20.9B (-11% q/q). Outlook: The
current macroeconomic and financing environment shows no evidence of near-term
improvement. ||SAP [SAP.GE] Reports Q1 Net â‚¬204M v â‚¬346Me, Rev â‚¬2.40B v
â‚¬2.57Be; maintains FY09 outlook. Due to uncertainty surrounding the economic
and business outlook; it will not provide specific outlook for software and
software related revenues for 2009. Expects Q2 to continue as difficult period,
will be difficult to compare to strong Q2 of 2008. || Banco Santander [SAN.SP]
Reports Q1 Net â‚¬2.10B v â‚¬1.80Be, Net interest income â‚¬6.23B, +22% y/y, Bad
loans ratio end of March 2.49% v 2.04% q/q, Core capital 7.3% v 6.1% y/y;
coverage ratio 80% v 134% y/y, Op margin reached 15% to â‚¬5.4B. || ArcelorMital
[MT.NV] Reports Q1 Net loss $1.1B v profit $594Me; EBITDA $900M v $1.02Be, Rev
$15.1B v $17.5Be, Q1 Shipments 16.0M tons (-6% q/q). || Bayer [BAY.GE] Reports
Q1 Net â‚¬425M v â‚¬507Me, EBITDA (adj) â‚¬1.7B v â‚¬1.79Be, Rev â‚¬7.90B v â‚¬8.06Be.
Expects mixed outlook for FY09, reaffirms goal to bring down its net financial
debt toward â‚¬10B by end of 2009. || Continental [CON.GE] Reports Q1 Net loss
â‚¬267.3M v â‚¬301Me. Rev â‚¬4.3B v â‚¬4.49Be, CEO: The business environment will
remain difficult in Q2 as well. So, compliance with agreed key financial
figures will still pose a major challenge. || France Telecom [FTE.FR] Reports
Q1 EBITDA â‚¬4.30B v â‚¬4.45Be, Rev â‚¬12.69B v â‚¬12.76Be, reaffirms FY09 organic cash
flow target of â‚¬8.0B. ||
- Speakers: ECB's Trichet reiterated the central bank's view on inflation. He
saw short term levels of very low inflation. However, Trichet stressed that
inflation would rise again toward the end of the year. The financial crisis was
a continuing problem and urged constant vigilance || ECB's Mersch stated that
Risks to financial markets have intensified and must ensure stimulus measures
are effective. He commented that short term solutions are incompatible with
financial stability. Mersch stated that he believed that there was some margin
left to lower interest rates || ECB's Wellink comented that forcing banks to
only lend domestically was bad. He reiterated the view that restoring
confidence to both economy and financial system remained crucial|| German Fin
Min official: Credit conditions are less tight in Germany
compared to other EU members. He commented that a German GDP contraction of 6%
was not unrealistic. || BOE's Barker commented that banks were right to be
careful about their lending as they need to consider rising unemployment and
repossessions || BOE designate Miles noted that it is sensible for banks to
hold more capital now than they have done in the past. ||
- In Currencies: The USD and JPY currencies were reflecting the rising risk
appetite in the session. Dealers also noting that today's FOMC meeting, which
could include more quantitative easing steps. EUR/USD was firmly above the 1.32
handle and some chatter circulating of some 1.3300 option barrier resistance making
the rounds. USD/JPY testing the 97.00 figure after probing 95.60 yesterday.
European pairs are broadly firmer against the JPY with GBP/JPY up 200 pips at
143.20 area and EUR/JPY at 128.35, some 400 pips off Tuesday's intraday lows.
Higher energy and metal prices helping the AUD, CAD and NZD. Gold should
continue to experience tentative demand on dips with the $860/oz level in the
cash market deemed as the key pivotal point.
- In Fixed Income: In fixed income : supply remains in focus with the Italian
Central Bank selling â‚¬9B in 3 and 10y conventional BTP's and over â‚¬3B in
floating rate notes. The new benchmark 10y BTP drew a bid-to cover of 1.4,
below the 1.6 at the preceding 10y auction. The CzechRepublic also priced its â‚¬1.5B 4.5%
2014 Bond at 190bps/swaps In the UK, the DMO successfully sold the residual
Â£187M in 2049 Gilts left over from the failed auction in March, with a strong
cover of almost 5. Renewed risk appetite has kept the yield on the UST 10y Note
above the all important 3.00% level in Asian and European Hours, ahead of the
FOMC meeting and the Treasury's $36B 7y note action. The long bond is pretty
much unchanged at 3.955% || Dealers noting the Jun Bund contract continues to
consolidate in its April price range of 121.60 to 123.40 || US Treasurys
consolidated as well from losses it encountered during Tuesday's session. Jun
T-Bond futures were lower by 0.2% at 123-20, roughly in the middle of its
electronic session range. British gilt futures also fell in trade on Wednesday,
tracking Bunds lower as equities unwound some of the previous day's losses
- In Energy: Chinese Gov't stated that Q1 energy consumption per GDP unit fell
2.89% y/y. The Q1, China's
energy consumption rose by 3.04%. || Jun NYMEX crude futures at session highs
ahead of the NY morning as it approaches the $51 area in its electronic
- Swine Flu: World Health Organization (WHO) provided update on Swine Flu
outbreak. Confirmed cases total 112 worldwide. Says 3 cases in New
Zealand; 2 in Israel;
2 in Spain and
2 in UK. The US
has 64 cases; Mexico
has 26 and 13 in Canada.
- Credit Crisis: EU States agreed to raise capital minimums for banks. The 27
EU members backed an increase of capital requirement for banks in which banks
must retain 5% of assets-backed deals. The rules need EU Parliamentary approval
(vote scheduled for early May). The overhaul is set to take force in 2011 (to
avoid crimping lending during the recession) || ECB released its April lending
survey. It saw signs of possible stabilization of current credit conditions.
The survey showed that 43% of banks tightened business credit in Q1 compared to
64% prior quarter. The survey expected the number to decline to 28% for Q2.
Banks indicated that government loan guarantees were already having positive
impact on lending
*** NOTES ***
- Risk appetite increasing in the session with sentiment aided by recent
US/European data. Thus markets getting all giddy as the rate of recent economic
deterioration seemed to shown improvement. Since US Consumer Conference came
out yesterday above expectations, the risk aversion initially set off by
renewed banking-sector concerns and swine flu fears have taken a back seat.
Thus the price action providing a softer USD, JPY currencies, firmer equities
in both Europe and US complemented by higher commodity
- The focus will be seeing if the Q1 advance US GDP would continue the trend of
- 8:30 (US) Q1 Advanced GDP Q/Q: -4.7% expected v -6.3% prior,
- 8:30 (US) Advance Q1 Annualized GDP q/q (last -6.3%), Q1 GDP Price Index
(last 0.5%), Q1 Personal Consumption (last -4.3%), Q1 Core PCE q/q (last 0.9%)
- 10:30 (US) DoE Crude Oil/Gasoline/Distillate Inventories
- 10:00 (UK) BoE to purchase Â£3B 2014 - 2018 Gilts in reverse auction
- 1:00 (US) Treasury's $26B 7-yr note auction
- 2:00 (US) FOMC rate decision
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