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Forex Blog - European Market Update: German services and French manufacturing PMIs move above the 50 level, suggesting expansion

Today 05:51am EST/09:51am GMT
European Market Update: German services and French manufacturing PMIs move above the 50 level, suggesting expansion


- (NV) Netherlands July House Prices M/M +0.1%, Y/Y: -4.4%

- (SZ) Swiss Jul Money Supply M3 Y/Y : 7.7% v 5.7% prior

- (FR) French Prelim PMI Manufacturing: 50.2 v 49.0e (Highest reading in 15 months); PMI Services 48.9 v 46.3e

- (GE) German Aug Adv PMI Manufacturing: 49.0 v 47.0e v 45.7 prior; PMI Services: 54.1 v 48.6e (16-month highs)

- (NV) Netherlands Aug Consumer Confidence: -17 v -22e

- (NV) Netherlands July House Prices M/M +0.1%, Y/Y: -4.4%

- (EU) Aug Adv PMI Manufacturing: 47.9 v 47.5e; PMI Services: 49.5 v 46.5e; PMI Composite: 50.0 v 48.0e

- Lithuanian July Industrial production Y/Y: -15.7% v -16.1% PRIOR


- In equities news overnight: European equities opened to the downside amidst a volatile Asian trading session that appeared to be leaning towards an end of the week sell off. Asian bourses staged a second half recovery, with mainland China closing positive and Indian bourses recovering opening losses. This changing momentum played out in the European pre-market and was mixed with expectedly bearish comments out of the world's largest container shipper Moller Maersk [MAERSKB.DE] in its H1 report. Maersk stated that it continues to see volume and shipping charges remaining depressed in H2, with operations trending in line with those seen during H1. Where Maersk to report a FY loss, it would be the first in its corporate history going back to 1904 and have broader inclinations for global trade. Despite these comments, Maersk's numbers came in within the range of expectations and turned positive with the broader equity trend. Following the lower open, markets trended upwards before snapping positive sharply following the 3:30EST release of German PMI data. This data pushed markets positive, a level that was held until just before 5:00EST when equities again snapped another leg higher. This movement corresponded with UK July car sales figures and discussion of a JPMorgan note on CEE equities. Markets into 5:30EST have held to their best levels on continued light trading.

-In individual equities: Moller Maersk [MAERSKB.DE] Reports H1 Net loss DKK3.0B v loss DKK 3.1Be, Rev DKK127.4B v DKK125.8Be. H1 gain of DKK440M on the back of divestment of ships and rig units. H1 volume shipped -7% y/y. Q2 freight rates -34% y/y. Have maintained market share through H1. Expect to see results in H2 broadly in line with those seen in H1. See low levels of economic activity progressing through H2. Expect container volumes in H2 to be down y/y. Expect H2 shipping rates to increase only slightly over H1. Expect H2 cash flow levels to fall v H1 on the back of tax charges. || Stagecoach Group [SGC.UK] (UK) OFT has agreed to send fair trade findings regarding UK bus operators to the Competition Commission -Times. Four firms dominate UK bus operations, Arriva, FirstGroup, Go-Ahead and Stagecoach. || K+S [SDF.GE] (CH) China is still in constant contact with potash companies regarding annual contract price settlement - 21st Century Business Herald. || Eni [ENI.IT] CEO: Seeking to expand natural gas pipeline network, looking at assets held by E.on. Group is also considering buying assets for its oil exploration arm in Uganda. ||

- Speakers: Australian Treasurer Swan: To remove interest withholding tax on Australian Government bonds by year-end

- In Currencies: European PMI data helped to offset the rise in risk aversion experienced in Asia following reports that China might be planning to increase its capital requirements for banks. The news caused jitters among Asian investors and prompted a safe haven bid for the region debt market and Treasuries and boosted the USD and JPY. Thus a mixed performance by Far East bourses in the session. The positive PMI data out of the Euro-zone area put a floor underneath the European equity market and corresponded with a soft tone in USD, which triggered firmer commodity markets.

- EUR/CHF retested 1.5130 in late Asia. The USD was probing a critical daily chart levels against the CHF at the 1.0570 to 1.0600 neighborhood.

- The AUD/USD managed to regain its composure after being weighed down by Westpac earnings and the bank's increased in its bad debt charges. The AUD rebounded on comments that Australia would remove its withholding tax on bonds.

- In Fixed Income: With nervousness over limits on Chinese lending in the air Government Bonds opened bid in Europe, with Schatz and Bund yields notably testing August lows in early trade at 1.25% and 3.23% respectively. But European data continues to surprise and this morning's better than expected PMI's are no expectation. The market responded to the data with forceful selling in the short end and curve flattening, but current Schatz yields around 1.33% are still some distance from last week's GDP induced highs, and over 30bps away from the August peak in the wake of NFP's. The Bund has held up comparatively well , with a yield anchored within a basis point or two of its 200 day moving average of 3.25%. Treasuries have languished in negative territory for most of the session with the yield on the 10y Note up to 3.45%, whilst UK debt has outperformed on a relative basis, with the yield on the 10y Gilt steady at 3.61%.

- In Energy: South Korea July Crude Oil imports 65.4M barrels versus 71.6M y/y

- Oil product demand 63.7M barrels compared with 60.5M y/y

*** NOTES ***

- Markets manage to shrug off chatter that China's banking regulator sought tightening capital requirements ; Shanghai Composite was briefly negative but ends session up 1.7%

- European PMIs basically at 15-month highs helping risk appetite, weaker USD and firm/steady commodities. German services and French manufacturing moved above the 50 level, suggesting expansion.

- Cash for clunkers ends Monday

***Looking Ahead*** Fed's Bernanke , US Existing Home Sales data

- 10:00 (MX) Mexican Central Bank interest rate decision: No change expected, in the overnight rate from the current rate of 4.50%

- 10:00 (US) Jul Existing Home Sales: 5.00Me v 4.89M prior, M/M: 2.1%e v 3.6% prior

- 10:00 (US) Fed's Bernanke to give opening remarks at Jackson Hole, WY

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