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Friday August 14, 2009 - 10:23:12 GMT
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Forex Blog - European Market Update: Euro-Zone inflation remains in negative territory; Hong Kong moves out of recession

Today 05:59am EST/09:59am GMT

European Market Update: Euro-Zone inflation remains in negative territory; Hong Kong moves out of recession



- (FI) Finland June GDP Indicator: -11.1% v -11.4% prior

- (FI) Finland June CPI M/M: -0.6% v -0.1%e v, Y/Y: -0.6% v -0.1%e

- (FR) French Q2 Preliminary Non-Farm Payrolls Q/Q: -0.5 v -0.8%e; Preliminary Wages Q/Q: 0.4 v 0.8% prior

- (HU) Hungarian Jun Final Industrial Output M/M: 1.7% v 1.9% prior, Y/Y: -18.8% v -18.6% prior

- (CZ) Czech Q2 Preliminary GDP SA Y/Y: -4.9% v -4.2%e

- (SP) Spanish Q2 GDP (Constant SA) Q/Q: -1.0% v -0.9%e; Y/Y: -4.1% v -4.0%e

- (SW) Swedish Jul Average House Prices (SEK): 1.70M v 1.90M prior

- (SW) Swedish Jul AMV Unemployment Rate: 5.0% v 5.2%e

- (HK) Hong Kong GDP Q/Q: 3.3% v 1.2%e; Y/Y: -3.8% v -5.3%e

- (EU) Euro-Zone Jul CPI M/M: -0.7% v -0.6%e; Y/Y: -0.7% v -0.6%e; CPI - Core Y/Y: 1.3% v 1.3%e


- In equities news overnight: European equity markets have continued the broad rally out of Asia with a limited positive trading range. In macro data, Spanish and Czech Q2 GDP figures showed that for much of
Europe, the recession was still on. Continued decline in French non-farm payrolls and a lower Euro-zone CPI for July than expected added some weight to equity trading. In corporate news, strong earnings from the luxury sector out of Swiss name Swatch [UHR.SZ] beat estimates and provided the strong forecasts for a sector that has been specifically hurt by the current economic downturn.

- Earnings from major German steel manufacturer ThyssenKrupp [TKA.GE] proved as challenging as smaller rival
Salzgitter [SZG.UK], but, as like in Salzgitter, shares of Krupp traded positive from the open on hope that a bottom had been reached. Other earnings in today's premarket included Hochtief [HOT.GE], and SMA Solar [S92.GE]. Following the open, equities looked ready to slip negative on the weight of negative GDP reads, but were able to find a floor and traded broadly upwards from 3:15-4:15EST. Into and through the 4:00EST, markets have remained flat to down in a low acute angle. Trading volumes have continued to remain thin with each of the major bourses trading below their summer averages. ThyssenKrupp [TKA.GE] Reports Q3 Net loss €642M v loss €464Me, Rev €9.3B v €8.7Be. Q3 order intake €7.9B v €14.2B y/y. Guides FY09 at a pretax loss, to be negatively affected by restructuring costs. Guides decline in sales/volumes y/y. || Swatch [UHR.SZ] Reports H1 Net CHF299M v CHF260Me, Rev CHF2.8B v CHF2.4Be. FX to have slight negative impact on FY revenues. Outlook Main growth driver in the coming months will continue to be the improving sales in most of the countries where demand should pick up with the anticipated weakening of the recession. The sales development in the last two to three months as well as current order entries show signs of recovery. || Man Group [EMG.UK] Confirms disposal of MF Global stake to Nomura. Reminder: Earlier in session: Man Group disposes of its remaining shareholding in the company; The structure provides Man Group with gross initial disposal proceeds of $112M. || British Land [BLND.UK] Reportedly group has yet to receive a bid -WSJ. Earlier in session: Could receive £10B ($17B) bid from a group of foreign investors - London Telegraph. || Hochtief [HOT.GE] Reports Q2 Net €44M v €40Me, Rev €4.7B v €4.7Be. Q2 order inflow €5.7B v €7.1B y/y. Q2 Backlog €33.1B v €31.9B y/y. || SMA Solar [S92.GE] Reports Q2 Net €20M v €22Me, Rev €160M v €160Me; Remain optimistic regarding FY09 outlook. Guides FY09 EBIT margin 18-20%, Rev €680-730M v €660Me. ||

- Speakers: HK Gov't revised its 2009 GDP upward to -4.5% to -5.5% range compared to its prior view of -5.5 to -6.5% range. It also lowered its 2009 CPI view to 0.5% from prior 1.0%.
Hong Kong noted that it saw some encouraging signs of economic recovery following its better Q2 GDP data || (UK) Q2 Mortgage Repossessions at 11.4k; -10 % q/q, +14% y/y - Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) || Indian Central Bank (RBI) Subbarao commented that too much liquidity could cause asset price bubble but India was not near that level. He noted that the RBI wpuldl take action on incipient signs of inflation but was too early to be concerned about inflation. No decision at this time on Gov't borrowings. Current drought levels will have an economic impact but not seeing any pressure on food price inflation || Indian Gov Economic Advisor Rangarajan commented that the current deficit levels were not sustainable and that emphasis must be placed on growth; must ensure liquidity is within limits. He forecasted FY2010 GDP growth between 6.0 to 6.5%. Lastly he stated that the gov't did not plan to pursue strategy of full capital account convertibility at breakneck speed

- In Currencies: The GBP/USD declined from its opening level highs in
Europe. Dealers noting that M&A chatter provided some earlier support the GBP amid reports that an Asian consortium might be considering a multi-billion GBP bid for British Land. The GBP/USD did test below 1.65 level before stabilizing.

- The JPY continued to maintain a firm tone. Japanese press reports noted that the major Japanese exporters lowered internal budget rates for the USD/JPY from 95.00 down towards the 90 and 91 handles. There has been some growing speculation that a new Japanese gov’t run by the current opposition could accept a 'stronger yen' in recent session following the country's Aug 30th national election.

- In Fixed Income: European Government bonds are rallying in tandem with equities this morning following yesterday's impressive Long Bond auction. Gilts are leading the way up, with German and
UK yield curves both undergoing bull flattening. The UK 2-10y yield spread is approaching 275bps whilst the German 2-10y spread is below 202bps. Short dated issues in both markets received negligible benefit from Euro-zone CPI figures,which undershot expectations , placing inflation in Europe below the ECB's target for the 8th successive month. Traders don' have long to wait before learning whether the trend replicated across the Atlantic and ahead of US CPI data , Fed Fund futures are pricing in about a 40% chance of a 25bps hike to 0.50% by March , having almost fully priced a hike in at least week's close.

- In Energy:
Norway Oil Fund reported its Q2 holdings of NOK2.39T v NOK2.08T q/q, Return of 12.7% which was the best level reported in funds history. New capital into fund in Q2 at NOK40B v NOK44B q/q with the fund's equity holdings at 60.3% v 52.6% prior

- In the papers: Toxic loans might wipe out equity of around 150 banks - London Independent. Article noted that the
US financial system remained at risk of instability because of toxic loans clogging bank balance sheets, acting a watchdog set up to monitor the government bailout. Analysis done by the Congressional Oversight Panel showed that under a scenario 20% worse than assumptions used in the Federal Reserve's stress tests, about 719 banks with assets between $600M and $100B would need to raise some $21B in new capital to offset loan losses. || China Cracking Down on Credit Card Issuers in the NY Times. Article noted that credit cards gained popularity among Chinese as the middle class expanded and living standards rose and as the government tried to encourage use of the cards to stimulate domestic consumption. But rising debt, especially among young Chinese who were poor candidates for credit cards in the first place, has put a strain on some families, and the government is putting restrictions on the credit card industry

*** NOTES ***

- Overall equity markets current deflect the soft tone in Chinese equities.
Shanghai's Composite: -3.0% in session to 3,047 (six week low in index; worst weekly performance since February). One dealer ponders that 'contagion' seems to be a forgotten word

Hong Kong joins France and Germany out of the recession picture. Next up Japan with positive growth on Monday????

***Looking Ahead***
U.S. data today includes CPI and industrial production.

- 8:30 (US) Jul Consumer Price Index M/M: 0.0% e v 0.7% prior, Y/Y: -1.9% e v -1.4% prior

- 8:30 (US) Jul CPI Ex Food & Energy M/M: 0.1% e v 0.2% prior, Y/Y: 1.60%e v 1.7% prior

- 8:30 (US) Jul CPI Core Index SA: No expectations v 219.344 prior

- 8:30 (US) Jul Consumer Price Index NSA 215.489 e v 215.693 prior

- 8:30 (CA) Canadian Manufacturing Sales M/M: -0.2% e v -6.0% prior

- 8:30 (CA) Canadian New Motor Vehicle Sales M/M: -1.0% e v 1.0% prior

- 9:15 (US) Jul Industrial Production 0.4% e v -0.4% prior

- 9:15 (US) Jul Capacity Utilization 68.3% e v 68.0% prior

- (BE) Belgian Jun Trade Balance: No expectations v €861.8M prior

- 10:00 (US) Aug Preliminary U. of Michigan Confidence: 69.0e v 66.0 prior


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