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Monday March 8, 2010 - 11:05:58 GMT
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European Market Update: Risk Appetite stalls during European morning

Monday, March 08, 2010 5:45:51 AM

 European Market Update: Risk Appetite stalls during European morning


- (SZ) Switzerland Feb Unemployment Rate: 4.4% v 4.4%e; Unemployment Rate Seasonally Adj: 4.1% v 4.1%e
- (FR) Bank of France Feb Business Sentiment: 102 v 104e
- (TT) Taiwan Feb Total Trade Balance: $900M v $1.4Be; Total Imports Y/Y: 45.8% v 39.1%e; Total Exports Y/Y: 32.6% v 32.9%e
- (CZ) Czech Jan Trade Balance (CZK): 13.1B v 10.0Be
- (CZ) Czech Feb Unemployment Rate: 9.9% v 10.0%e
- (TU) Turkey Jan Industrial Production M/M: 0.3% v 0.7% prior; Y/Y: 16.1% v 10.8% prior; Indust Prod NSA Y/Y: 12.1% v 15.5%e
- (SZ) Swiss Jan Real Retail Sales Y/Y: 4.4% v 2.3%e
- (HK) Hong Kong Feb Foreign Currency reserves: $258.2B v $257.1B prior
- (EU) Euro-Zone Mar Sentix Investor Confidence: -7.5 v -8.8e

- Equities: Equity markets in Europe have trended lower through their morning session. Opening in positive territory, strong sentiment from
Asia, the Euro and basic resource sectors rolled over into 5:00EST. Giving back gains, weakness filtered into a broad selection of equity sectors; equity trading has continued to lack technical or decisive direction. Pharma names Roche [ROG.SZ] (after walking away from a study) and AstraZeneca [AZN.UK] (following disappointing study results) were consistent leaders to the downside of trading. With earnings winding down, geo-political events have played a primary role in trading sentiment early in the week. French commentary on the Euro and continued comments from China's leadership conference on the Yuan have provided base catalysts for currency markets that rotated into equity trading. Trading volumes ex-Dax have been below moving averages as markets look ready to break a 3-session positive trend.

- In individual equities: AstraZeneca [AZN.UK]: Reports RECENTIN Horizon III Study Results; did not meet primary endpoint. || Royal Dutch [RDSA.UK/AOE.AU]: Announces a non-binding proposal from Shell and PetroChina; The total deal is worth at least A$3.3B ($3B). || Roche [ROG.SZ]:
Co. and Biogen suspend ORCRELIZUMAB treatment for rheumatoid arthritis. ||

- Speakers: PBoC Vice Gov Su Ning commented that
China's inflation outlook was the key factor in its interest rate decisions. Su urged banks to carry out stress tests in order to ensure their credit quality and that the amount of non-performing loans was decreasing. The official noted that bank lending to special purpose finance vehicles set up by Chinese local governments might pose a future risk and urged banks to strengthen their monitoring and assessment of lending to local governments. The trial CNY settlement program had involved five cities and transactions have exceeded CNY10B. ***Libya Oil Chief Ghanem stated that there would be no change in output at the March 17th OPEC meeting with compliance to be primary focus. He added that oil price range of $80-$100 would not impact global economic recovery ***OECD published its economic outlook on Norway: Says Norges (central bank) should return monetary policy back to normality; Expansionary policy posed a risk to monetary policy and NOK currency rate. The OECD advised Central Bank to expedite its exit from stimulus measures in the near future and that the Norges should raise interest rate firmly and progressively***

- Currencies: The JPY and USD were marginally softer against the European pairs in a very subdued European morning. Risk appetite was rising as concerns over the European peripheral subsided. French President Sarkozy stated over the weekend that the euro region was ready to rescue
Greece should the government struggle to fund its budget deficit. However, the USD was able to regain some composure ahead of the NY morning and was trading at unchanged levels against the major European pairs compared to the Asian open.

- Fixed Income: The Bank of England's 3 year USD denominated bonds for reserves management are attracting good interest with orders said to be in excess of $2B and guidance tightened from +5bps over swaps to flat.
Norway sold NOK3B in 5 year bonds with an average yield of 3.26%. Spanish telco giant Telefonica launched a 5 year € benchmark issue with guidance at swaps +95bps

- Geo-Political:
Iraq has pulled off a largely successful national election. Violence led to the deaths of 36 individuals, a figure that is well below potential worst case scenarios. Prelim turnout figures are seen at nearly 70% of the eligible voting population. Due to the wide number of parties and candidate running, results, and the political maneuvering to form a new government are not expected for several months. Election figures are set to be released within 24hrs of Sunday's close. Success of the election cycle has been a key hurdle in maintaining the planned US military Iraq exit timeline. *** As expected, Icelandic voters soundly defeated a referendum regarding the repayment of €3.9B in IceSave bailout funds to the governments of the UK and Holland. The vote, while predicted, will pose challenges to an IMF led package for the state, as Nordic partners have balked that any 'no vote' would lead to their withdrawal from the plan. Iceland will be forced into a more difficult negotiation position with both the UK and Dutch regarding the repayment, and any potential moves towards the EU following the vote.

- In the Papers: FT article noted that Dubai World might begin talks with creditors this week on a proposal to restructure more than $20B in debts ***

- Risk appetite rises on in Asia but stalls during European morning
- China PBoC chief Zhou: USD peg is temporary and will exit the policies at some future point

***Looking Ahead:
- 6:30 (CL) Chile Feb Trade Balance: $2.0Be v $2.1B prior; Total Exports: No est v $5.9B prior; Total Imports: No est v $3.8B prior:
- 7:30 (PD) Poland Econ Min
- 8:00 (UK) BOE's Barker
- 9:00 (CA) Canada Feb Housing Starts: 190Ke v 185.6K prior
- 12:00 ECB's Stark



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