- In equities: -In equities: Coming off strong gains on Monday's sessions,
European equity markets snapped a 2-day positive level opening streak by
trending negative through the pre-market and opening for trade negative across
the board. Geo-political concerns emerged out of Korea
once again following comments that N Korea was readying
itself to fire another missile, this time of the medium-range variety. Overall,
financial names led the downward direction on the open with Barclays [BARC.UK]
down -12% on the back of IPIC placing its 1.3B stake, HSBC [HSBA.UK] traded
lower on rumor that a major investor may need to sell down Â£2B stake. German
and French tier one banking names also traded lower in a sector wide movement.
Other trends included the paring of recent gains, and some profit taking in
major industrials, exporters and basic resources firms that have moved higher
over the 10+ week rally seen in global equity markets. Steel names, including
ArcelorMittal [MTA.NV] and ThyseenKrupp [TKA.GE] were leading downward movers
in initial trades. Continental markets slowed show recovery from the opening.
Stronger than expected Spanish Net unemployment (showing a positive figure) and
second tier data out of Switzerland
continued this upward momentum. By 4:00EST, the CAC and DAX rallied to their
session highs with the CAC trading nearly flat on the session and the DAX
breaking into positive territory. Recovery in industrial and exporters led this
equity lift. The FTSE, however, never gained positive traction being weighed
down by two of its biggest banking names. Past 5:00ESt, the DAX trended back
into negative territory joining the FTSE and CAC in the red.
-In individual equities: Barclays [BARC.UK] Abu Dhabi's
IPIC to dispose of stake in the company equal to 1.3B shares (15.5% of shares
outstanding). Also IPIC invited offers for its entire Â£1.5B holding of Barclays
capital notes. Abu Dhabi's IPIC has
no current intention to exercise or sell indirect interest in warrants of
Barclays Bank. || HSBC [HSBA.UK] Fears continue that Saudi investor al-Sanea
may need to sell down Â£2B stake -Guardian. Saudi central bank has reportedly
frozen al-Sanea's accounts. al-Sanea is owner fo Saad investments that has
broad global banking investors and significant land and property holdings in Middle
East. S&P cut outlook on Saad property investments to negative
from stable on the back of growing risks in the sector. || Ryanair[ RYA.UK]
Reports FY09 net loss â‚¬169M v gain â‚¬62Me, Rev â‚¬2.94B v â‚¬2.95Be. Fuel costs rose
to â‚¬1.26B +â‚¬466M y/y, Q1-3 are 90% fuel hedged, Group has â‚¬2.3B cash on hand,
Guides FY2010 post tax profit â‚¬200-300M, Guides FY2010 traffic +15% y/y. ||
King Fisher[ KGF.UK] Reports Q1 Group SSS -1.7% y/y, Q1 Total Sales +2.4% y/y
to Â£2.64B. Outdoor seasonal product sales boosted by more favorable weather in
the UK and France
and a later Easter compared to last year, whilst non-seasonal sales continued
to decline. Group retail profit up 38.5%, primarily reflecting a doubling of
B&Q's profit in the UK.
French sales up 1.7%, retail profit up 3.5% benefiting from cost initiative. ||
Centrica [CNA.UK] To acquire 45% stake in gas development block for $145M. Co
to acquire a 45% interest in gas development Block 5, located off the south
east coast of Trinidad. || SocGen [GLE.FR] Co.
traders continue to operate at limit of rules without being reprimanded -
French press. La Tribune reports that for a study carried out by consultants
Technologia at the request of the French bank and its workers committee
recommends steps including a clearer division of tasks between traders and
their back office, improving the job prospects and salary of the back office,
and making bonus policy more transparent. || Deutsche Telecom [DTE.GE] Update:
France Telecom has placed offer for T-MobileUK
-Guardian. Article notes that initial approaches by FTE were rejected by DTE.
|| Gazprom [GAZP.RU] Polish Econ Min: Signed short term gas delivery contract
with company, PGNig signs $300M contracts with Gazprom, sees contract returning
deliveries to full restoration. |||S&P commented that the GM bankruptcy had
limited impact on Japanese automakers |||
- Speakers: Treasury Sec Geithner commented that both China
and US expected USD to be the main reserve currency for some time to come.
Geithner noted that China's
Vice Premier Wang did not express concerns regarding the countries US Treasury
holdings. The Tsy Sec continued to welcome Chinese commitment towards a
flexible Yuan currency over time. He noted that China
was helping to stabilize the international financial system. ||| ECB's Draghi
commented that States must seek to reduce debt levels and currency policies
must be shaped accordingly |||Swedish Central Bank commented that its domestic
banks could manage increased loan losses and that its main scenario assumes
that the major Swedish banks loan losses in 2009 and 2010 to total SEK170B. The
Riksbank noted that its domestic banks had sufficient capital to meet large
losses and remained well capitalized on a global context. It saw 40% of loan
losses from Baltic operations. Central Bank measures have contributed to a
decline in the banks liquidity risk since November but risks posed by Baltic
region economies to Swedish system have risen. The Riksbank noted that the
situation could worsen in region |||Latvian Gov't Advisor Bengt Dennis: Country
needs to devalue Lats currency at some point ||| German Chancellor Merkel
commented that she did not believe Germany should diversify away from exports
|| Spain Industry Minister commented on the decline in Span'sMay unemployment
data and noted that the jobless data could indicate a beginning of the end of
the crisis ||
- In Currencies: The USD managed to achieve some gains against its European
counterparts in the session. The GBP/USD traded at 1.6330, off over 120 pips
from the opening levels in Asia. Dealers were noting
that a negative today for the GBP currency was news that Barclay's largest
Middle Eastern investor, Abu Dhabi's IPIChas announced plans to offload its
long term strategic stake, which could require the selling of GBP currency. The
EUR/USD was lower by 50 pips at 1.4127 for most of the morning and largely
ignored that highest level of unemployment within the Euro-Zone in a decade.
The Euro did manage to retrace most of its session losses as short-covering
ensued after the EU unemployment data. Commodity-related pairs followed the
energy and metal price action and consolidated some of its recent trend moves.
Some vague dealer chatter that the RBA was checking rates around .8100 level.
-In Fixed Income: Government bonds have experienced some relief from the
aggressive selling of the past fortnight with Bunds, Gilts and Treasuries all
in positive territory at the time of writing. UK
and German yield curves continue to steepen with 2s10s in both markets right at
their widest levels of the year. In an illustration of how conditions have
improved over the past two months, the UK sold Â£2B of the 4.25% 2049 Long
Gilts, the same issue which it had failed to sell in March, with auction
generating a strong bid to cover of more than 2 and a yield tail of less than 1
basis point. Issuance on the covered bond market is picking up with benchmark
offerings from DB and BNP both in the works. Three month Euribor improved by
1bps to 1.26%
- I n Energy: PPEC Research Director Qabazard commented that OPEC has an
overhang of 200M+ barrels of oil in floating stock but expressed optimism that
such an overhang would be consumed by the end of 2009. He reiterated the view
that the recent oil price rise was not due to fundamental reasons ||Libyan Oil
Min stated that oil could rise to $80/bbl in Q2 and that OPEC sought an average
price pf $70/barrel for 2009 |||Russian Energy Ministry stated that Russian May
Oil Production was 9.8M bpd, which was unchanged from Aprils's level and up 1%
from year-ago levels. Gazprom's May gas output declined by 14% m/m, and down
34% y/y || Russian Foreign Min Lavrov stated that he expected 'constructive
response' from Iran regarding its nuclear enrichment program || China end of
April Crude oil inventories at 38.6M tons, up 1.0M tons y/y.
In Commodities: China Steel Association Chairman Bingsheng commented that the
Jan-April iron ore imports exceeded demand by 27M tons with iron Ore surplus
seen at 200-300M tons due to excessive imports ||| India's JSW Steel Exec
commented that May sales rose by 50% y/y and the company to consider increasing
steel product prices by 2% in July ||
- Credit Crisis: Reportedly Russian companies overdue loans at RUB500B, up 100%
in four months of 2009
*** NOTES ***
- FT: Chinese official who sees no replacement for the USD
- US Treasury Geithner in China. Dealers did note that the Tsy Sec was very
polite and saying all the right things to his hosts and biggest customers.
However, not all is rosy. China's
Yu tells US to be responsible and that there are alternatives to the USD
(specifically mentioning the Euro and commodities).
- Reserve bank of Australia (RBA) leaves unchanged as expected and adds scope
for further easing if necessary.
- Reportedly North Korea preparing up to 4 more medium-range missile tests
- Swedish Central Bank: Banks notes the potential losses of its exposure from
- Looking Ahead:
-10:00 (US) Pending Home Sales M/M: 0.5% expected v 3.2% prior, Pending Home
Sales Index: No expectations v 3.2 prior
- 10:00 (EU) ECB's Constancio speaks in Portugal
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Mon 19 Mar 2018 Tue 20 Mar 2018 AA 9:30 GB- CPI A 10:00 DE- ZEW Survey Wed 21 Mar 2018 AA 03:00 AU- Employment AA 9:30 GB- Employment A 12:30 US- Current Account AA 14:00 US- Existing Homes Sales A 14:30 US- EIA Crude A A18:00 US- Fed Rate Decision A 21:00 NZ- RBNZ Rate Decision Thu 22 Mar 2018 AA All Day flash PMIs AA 9:30 GB- Retail Sales AA 12:00 GB- Bank Of England Decision A 13:30 US- Weekly Jobless Fri 23 Mar 2018 AA 12:30 CA- CPI/Retail Sales A 12:30 US- Durable Goods A 14:00 US- New Homes Sales
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