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Tuesday January 19, 2010 - 11:12:27 GMT
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European Market Update: Kraft sweetens offer for Cadbury to £11.9B as UK inflation gives BOE food for thought; Greece receives a verbal lashing

Tuesday, January 19, 2010 5:59:57 AM

 European Market Update: Kraft sweetens offer for Cadbury to £11.9B as UK inflation gives BOE food for thought; Greece receives a verbal lashing

 

***ECONOMIC DATA***
(EU) EURO-ZONE JAN ZEW ECONOMIC SENTIMENT: 46.4 V 48.0E
(EU) NOV CONSTRUCTION OUTPUT M/M: -1.1 V -0.6% PRIOR; Y/Y: NO EST V -7.7% PRIOR
(GE) GERMAN JAN ZEW ECONOMIC SENTIMENT: 47.2 V 50.0E; CURRENT SITUATION: -56.6 V -56.2E
(UK) DEC RPI M/M: 0.6% V 0.3%E; Y/Y: 2.4% V 2.1%E;
RPIX Y/Y: 3.8% V 3.5%E V 2.7% PRIOR
(UK) DEC CPI M/M: 0.6% V 0.3%E; Y/Y: 2.9% V 2.6%E;
CORE CPI Y/Y: 2.8% V 2.3%E - inflation above target for first time since May 09, highest reading since March 09
(NO) NORWAY Q4 EXISTING HOMES Q/Q: 0.0% V 1.8% P
RIOR
(HK) HONG KONG DEC UNEMPLOYMENT RATE SA: 4.9% V 5.0%E
(HU) HUNGARY NOV AVG GROSS WAGES:-3.0% V -1.0%E

-In equities: European equity markets have opened heavy and continued a negative rotation through the European morning. Weight to the indices has come from the financial sector that followed similar moves in
Asia. The PBOC once again (unexpectedly) raised its yield on 1-year bills in a routine auction. This act sent Asian banking shares, specifically HSBC [HSBA.UK] lower in Hong Kong trading. Expectations ahead of Citigroups [C] Q4 earnings in the NY pre-market are also weighing on the sector (following JPMorgan's disappointment on Friday). Disappointing earnings and updates from French based Alstom [ALO.FR], Casino [CO.FR] and UK based brewer SABMiller[SAB.UK] furthered the negative trend. Share of VW [VOW3.GE] have traded sharply lower through the session, moving into auction at one point. Rumors related to capital raises and potential sale of Qatar shares weighing on the name. A notable outperformer through the session has been Cadbury [CBRY.UK] that furthered a 4-month dance by agreeing to a 'friendly' 840p offer in cash (500p) and new shares (0.1874 for each outstanding). Blackstone [BX] unit Travelport has confirmed plans for a $2B LSE IPO. Both boards have approved the offer. While Kraft appears to be in the driving seat, rival bidders (Hershey [HSY]) have until Jan 25 to beat the offer. Markets have remained volatile through the session in anticipation of the US coming off its long-weekend holiday. Trading volumes have shown a mixed nature with the CAC40 trading below average as the FTSE and DAX trade more or less in-line.

-In individual equities: Cadbury CBRY.UK: Accepts 840p Bid From Kraft composed of 500p in cash and 0.1874 in new Kraft shares (Kraft to issue 265M new shares, 18% of shares outstanding). || SABMiller [SAB.UK]: Provides Q3 trading statement: Q3 organic lager volumes flat y/y v +1%e. || Chemring [CHG.UK]: Reports FY09 Pretax £102.6M v £74.2M y/y, Rev £503.9M v £354.2M y/y; Announces acquisition of ADG. || Travelport confirms intention for $1.775B LSE IPO. || Alstom [ALO.FR]: Reports Q3 Rev €4.7B v €4.8Be. || Lindt & Spruengli [LISP.SZ]: Reports FY09 Rev CHF2.57B v CHF2.6Be; Expects continued challenges in commodity markets. || ArcelorMittal [MT.NV]: Confirms enters initial discussions with BHP to combine iron ore interests in
Liberia and Guinea (West Africa). ||

- Fixed income: Weak economic data has been at the forefront of trading in macro markets this morning in
Europe. UK inflation figures for December were sharply higher than expected across the board. The headline annual CPI reading of 2.9% broke a number of records - marking the largest monthly jump on record, the highest reading since last March 2009, and pushing inflation in the UK above target for the first time since last May. Gilts and the short sterling strip were hit aggressively following the data, with Bunds and Treasuries following in suit. Short dated Gilt yields have moved sharply higher as expectations for tightening accelerate - the 2yr yield is up some 11bps at the time of writing, producing a flatter curve. A disappointing reading in the German ZEW Survey for January, which undershot consensus and posted its third sequential decline did little to reverse course for Government bonds, with cautious comments from rating agencies gaining more attention. Fitch noted that AAA rated sovereigns, particularly UK, Spain, France, must set more credible fiscal plans this year or face action, while S&P reiterated concerns over Greece. The benchmark 10y Bund yield is up almost 4bps at 3.285% and the 10yt Note yield up 1bps at 3.685%. - Sterling has benefited from higher than expected CPI data, higher Gilt yields and Kraft/Cadbury related flows. GBP/USD hit 6 week highs above 1.6450 while EUR/GBP tested fresh 4 month lows below 87.50. Greece related concerns continue to weigh on the EUR after a chorus of EU area officials expressed concerns over the situation and misgivings over the country's questionable economic statistics. Meanwhile the JPY gained on risk aversion following formal filing of bankruptcy proceedings by JAL. EUR/JPY moved below the 130 handle for the first time in 2010, while EUR/USD fell below 1.4350.

-Energy: The IEA followed up its January report commentary from last week stating that it expects to see 2010 oil prices holding in $70-80/bbl range. Weather conditions in the
Bosporus straits have forced Turkish officials to close north and south bound traffic coming in and out of the Black Sea. Under the same inclement weather, a container vessel in the Black Sea has run aground and is in the process of breaking up.

-Geo/political: The US political system is bracing for results from
Massachusetts special Senate election today. The election follows the death of Ted Kennedy in August, 2009. Kennedy held the seat from 1962-2009 in what has been considered a lock down blue/democratic state. Today's election pitting D Martha Coakley versus R Scott Brown has turned into a hotly contested race in which a Republican victory is very plausible. The repercussions of a Republican victory would resound not only as a further perceived plebiscite against D Pres Obama, but have immediate Congressional affects. Democrats would lose a 'supermajority' in the Senate with the filibuster back on the shelf while health care legislation, currently in Conference Committee could be blocked. A spokesperson representing the Dubai government has thrown open the door to further questions regarding the liquidity and capability of gov linked firms in paying their debt facilities. The spokeswoman stated that the announced $10B rescue from Abu Dhabi is really closer to half that amount. It remains unclear how this will affect the servicing of nearly $22B in Dubai World debt. In follow up comments, it was noted that of the $10B figure initially quoted, $5B was previously announced funding from Abu Dhabi based banks.

***LOOKING AHEAD***
-8:00EST Citigroup [C] Reports Q4
-9:00EST(CA) BOC rate decision
- 9:00EST(
US) NOV Net long Term TIC flows, total TIC flows

 

 

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