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European Market Update: ECB overnight borrowings declines; UK January public finance data disappoints

Thursday, February 18, 2010 5:59:48 AM

 European Market Update: ECB overnight borrowings declines; UK January public finance data disappoints


- (SZ) Swiss Jan Trade Balance: CHF2.4B v CHF1.4B prior; Exports M/M: 3.2% v -1.3% prior; Imports M/M: 1.9% v -5.3% prior
- (HK) Hong Kong Jan Unemployment Rate: 4.9% v 4.8%e
- (DE) Denmark Feb Consumer Confidence: 1.8 v 1.5e
- (SW) Sweden Jan Unemployment Rate: 9.4% v 9.3%e
- (SW) Sweden Jan Headline
CPI M/M: -0.6% v -0.3%e; Y/Y: 0.6% v 1.0%e
- (SW) Sweden Jan CPI CPIF M/M: -0.2% v -0.3%e; Y/Y: 2.6% v 2.6%e;
CPI Level: 299.79 v 300.54e
- (NE) Netherlands Jan Unemployment Rate Seasonally Adj: 5.6% v 5.6%e
- (NO) Norway Q4 GDP Q/Q: 0.1% v 0.7%e; Mainland GDP Q/Q: 0.3% v 0.8%e
- (UK) Jan Major banks Mortgage Approvals: 49K v 63Ke
- (UK) Jan Preliminary M4 Money Supply M/M: 0.6% v 0.5%e, Y/Y: 5.1% v 4.6%e
- (UK) Jan Public Finances (PSNCR): -£11.8B v -£20.0Be, Public Sector Net Borrowing: +£4.3B v -£2.6Be; first borrowing for Jan on record
- (SZ) Swiss Feb ZEW Survey: 52.5 v 56.2 prior
- (RU) Russia Jan Unemployment Rate: 9.2% v 8.5%e
- (RU) Russia Jan Retail Sales M/M: -22.6% v -24.5%e; Y/Y: 0.3% v -1.3%e
- (RU) Russia Gold & Forex Reserve w/e Feb 12th: $431.5B v $433.2B prior
- (GR) Greece Jan CPI EU harmonized Y/Y: 2.3% v 2.7%e
- (PO) Portugal Jan Producer Prices M/M: 1.3% v 0.2% prior; Y/Y: 1.5% v 0.8% prior
- (UK) Feb Industrial Trends Total Orders: -36 v -39 prior

- Equities: Following four consecutive positive trading sessions, European markets opened mixed before trading lower in initial rotations. Whereas financial earnings had led the positive trend earlier in the week, disappointing figures, and impairment levels from SocGen [GLE.FR] led to lower trading in the name and the sector. Earnings reports were not uniformly negative with Cap Gemini [CAP.FR], PPR [PP.FR] Prenod Ricard [RI.FR], BAE Systems [BA.UK] and Kingfisher [KGF.UK] trading higher following figures. European bourses pushed to session lows after 4:00EST when Daimler [DAI.GE] released disappointing figures, disappointing guidance and scrapped its dividend payment. Strong auction results from first
Spain and then France rallied markets from this point forward. Other movers in today's morning session included Barclay's following the announcement that PCP3 had converted a large portion of its warrants into common stock; European tech took a boost from positive sector commentary from JPMorgan. Into 5:00ESt equities have continued to grind higher with earnings related names driving the momentum. Trading volumes have been mixed with lower levels seen on the FTSE and CAC.

In individual equities: SocGen [GLE.FR]: Reports Q4 Net €221M v €150Me, Rev €5.13B v €5.7Be; to pay dividend of €0.25 v €1.20 y/y. || Swiss Re [RUKN.SZ]: Reports Q4 Net CHF403M v CHF570Me; Targeting 12% ROE through credit cycle. || ABB [ABBN.SZ]: Reports Q4 Net $540M v $530Me, Rev $8.76B v $8.5Be. || BAE Systems [BA.UK]: Reports FY09 Net Loss £67M (incl impairment charges) v Profit £1.4Be, Rev £22.4B v £20.Be, to pay final div 9.6p/shr. || Axa [CS.FR]: Reports FY09 Net €3.6B v €3.3Be, Rev €90.1B v €94.4Be , to pay final dividend of €0.55/share (+38% y/y). || Tom Tom [TOM2.NV]: Reports Q4 Net €75M v €43Me, Rev €533M v €475Me. || Akza Nobel [AKZA.NV]: Reports Q4 Net loss €60M v €97Me, Rev €3.31B v €3.4Be. || Solvay [SOLB.BE]: Reports Q4 Net €188M v €116Me, Rev €2.2B v €2.3Be. ||

- Speakers: BoJ Gov Shirakawa commented that the central bank did not have inflation target adding that targeting short-term inflation might have negative influence for sustained economic growth *** Russia Central Bank (CBR) moves floating rouble band lower to 34.95 - dealers ***BoE Barker commented that the economic recovery could be hesitant and might see another quarter of negative production ***Norway's Stats Office revised lower its 2010 non-oil GDP growth of 2.0% from 2.2% view seen in December. It maintained 2011
GDP growth at 2.7% and lowered the 2012 GDP growth forecast to 2.7% from 3.3% prior. The Stats office left the 2010 Unemployment unchanged at 3.5% but raised the 2011 forecast to 3.9% from 3.6% prior and 2012unemployment view to 3.9% from 3.5%.*** European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD): Eastern European companies to face sluggish recovery. The EBRD expected loan defaults and unemployment in region to rise ***ISAE raised its 2010 GDP view for Italy to 1.0% from 0.6% prior. It forecasts Italy's 2010 gross debt to GDP ratio at 117.2% and at 118.2 in 2011 (Note: 2009 level was 114.8%). The ISAE maintained Italy's 2010 budget deficit to GDP ratio at 5.1% and saw it at 4.6% in 2011. It forecasted 2010 Unemployment to rise at 8.8% compared to the Dec unemployment rate of 8.5%.

- Currencies: The dollar maintained a firm tone throughout the European session but off its best levels ahead of the NY morning. After almost a week of elevated levels the ECB overnight lending facility saw the borrowing amount subside to more 'normal' levels but debt jitters continue to simmer. The EU reportedly was asking
Greece to cut spending by over €2B and reiterated its stance that no aid would be provided unless additional budget measures taken. Dealers noting that EU pressure for Greek budget cuts deemed 'Tremendous' . *** The EUR/USD retested its recent 9-month lows of 1.3540 before retracing back towards the 1.36 area. USD/CHF continues probe its 100-week mvg avg of 1.0830 but unable to sustain a break above. ***The GBP was softer following its January public finance data. January is deemed an important month for tax receipts but the UK experienced its first borrowing on record. GBP/USD tested 1.5575 in the aftermath of the data release in the session. Norwegian Q4 growth disappointed complemented by the country's Stats office revising its growth outlook lower.

- Fixed Income: Gilts have underperformed after disappointing public finances data, including the first net borrowing for January on record. It's the long end which has unsurprisingly borne the brunt of the selling with 10 and 20 year yields currently up 4bps on the session. Continental markets have managed to successfully digested a deluge of supply. In something of a relief for peripheral markets Spain sold €960M (mid range of expectations) in 30y bonos', but Greece is still 10bps wider on the day at +327bps. Meanwhile in the core
France sold just under €8B in short dated OATs and BTANs. After three successive days in the vicinity of €4B, borrowing from the ECB's marginal lending facility dropped back to a more normal €52M.

- Geopolitical:
China has announced that Zhang Yesui will be named new ambassador to the US beginning in mid-March 2010. Zhang is currently the head of China's UN delegation and will replace Zhou Wenzhong. Zhang is considered an outsider to Washington circles and will be tasked with building a new network at a time of growing US/China economic/trade tensions. Zhang is 56 and has served extensively in Chinese foreign affairs; he attended the London School of Economics. ***Senior Pakistani military officials have confirmed the capture of Taliban Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar. Baradar is thought to have been captured by a joint ISI/CIA raid in Karachi, Pakistan earlier in February. Baradar has been a de-facto leader of Taliban operations following targeted assassination of the prior military command in 2008, Baradar was operating in Northwest Pakistan and Afghanistan itself. The US has been applying extensive pressure on the ISI to apprehend Taliban officers operating out of Pakistan with mixed results. ***Georgian break-away region Abkhazia has stepped up pressure by allowing the Russian military access to build a new ground forces base. Russia recognized both Abkhazia and Ossetia following a smashing military victory over Georgia in the summer of 2008. The new military base will consolidate current Russian military and border police positions into one large force inside Abkhazia.

- ECB O/N borrowings decline to €52M from €3-4B seen over the last week.
- EU Pressure for Greek budget cuts deemed 'Tremendous'
- FOMC minutes more optimistic on outlook
- IMF: Will shortly begin market sales for remaining 191 tons of gold (in line with Apr 2009 G20 summit statement); To start selling up to $7B of gold to market. Reminder:
India purchased 200 ton last Nov from IMF.
- Obama/ Dali Lama meeting
- Russian Central Bank lowers Ruble trading band to 34.95 from 35.00. CBR commented that it would step up currency intervention reiterated that ther was room to lower interest rates
- BoJ. Domestic demand lacks momentum, recovery to remain moderate, will maintain very easy monetary conditions, important to pull out of deflation.

***Looking Ahead:
- 7:00 (CA) Canada Jan Consumer price Index M/M: 0.3%e v -0.3% prior; Y/Y: 1.8%e v 1.3% prior
- 7:00 (CA) Canada Jan CPI Core M/M: 0.0%e v -0.3% prior; Y/Y: 1.9%e v 1.5% prior
- 8:00 (PD) Poland Jan Producer Prices M/M: 0.5%e v -0.2% prior; Y/Y: 0.5%e v 2.1% prior
- 8:00 (PD) Poland Jan Sold Industrial Output M/M: -6.9%e v -5.4% prior; Y/Y: 6.6%e v 7.4% prior
- 8:30 (CA) Canada Dec Intl Securities Transactions: C$6.50Be v C$10.54B prior
- 8:30 (US) Jan Producer Price Index M/M: 0.8%e v 0.25 prior; PPI Ex Food&Energy M/M: 0.1%e v 0.0% prior
- 8:30 (US) Initial Jobless Claims: 438Ke v 440K prior; Continuing Claims: 4.500Me v 4.538M prior
- 9:00 (US) Dec RPX Composite 28-day Y/Y: No est v -4.19% prior
- 10:00 (US) Feb Philadelphia Fed: 17.0e v 15.2 prior
- 10:00 (US) Jan Leading Indicator: 0.5%e v 1.1% prior
- 10:00 (EU) Euro-Zone Feb Advance Consumer Confidence: -16e v -16 prior
- 10:30 (CA) Bank of Canada Review Publication
- (US) Weekly DOE energy inventories: Crude: +1.7Me; Gasoline: +1.5Me; Distillate: -1.6Me; Utilization: 79.4%e
- 11:00 (BR) Brazil to sell FRNs and bonds
- 14:00 (UK) BOE's Fisher



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