European Market Update: Market awaiting for 'activation' of Greek aid measures as Ecofin meets
Friday, April 16, 2010
European Market Update: Market awaiting for 'activation' of Greek aid measures as Ecofin meets
*** ECONOMIC DATA *** - (JP) Japanese Cabinet Office April Economic Outlook: Maintains overall economic outlook; raises business sentiment - (EU) Euro Zone Mar EU-25 Car Registrations: 10.8% v 3.0% prior - (HU) Hungary Feb Avg Gross wages Y/Y: % v 3.5%e - (TU) Turkey Mar Consumer Confidence: v 81.9 prior - (SZ) Swiss Mar Producer & Import Prices M/M: 0.5% v 0.4%e; Y/Y: 0.0% v -0.1%e - (AS) Austria Mar Consumer Prices M/M: 1.1% v 0.1% prior; Y/Y: 2.0% v 1.0% prior - (IT) Italy Mar Final CPI (NIC incl Tobacco) M/M: 0.3% v 0.3%e; Y/Y: 1.4% v 1.4%e - (IT) Italy Mar Final CPI EU Harmonized M/M: 1.5% v 1.5%; Y/Y: 1.4% v 1.4%e - (EU) Euro Zone Mar CPI M/M: 0.9% v 0.9%e; Y/Y: 1.4% v 1.5%e; CPI Core Y/Y: 1.0% v 0.9%e - (IT) Italy Feb Current Account: -â‚¬5.0B v -â‚¬5.5B prior
*** SPEAKERS/FIXED INCOME/FX/COMMODITIES/ERRATUM *** - Equities: Equity markets in Europe opened on a heavy note with themes from both China and the US serving new concerns to the pace of global growth (US weekly jobless, China possible tightening). In addition to these flows, continued intense media coverage on Greece and the aftermarket downward rotation in shares of Google [GOOG] post earnings added weight. Markets opened at their trading level lows and have put in a gradual recovery from that time. Upward lift has come from a number of key sectors with auto's leading the momentum. Euro Zone March new car registration drove interest in auto names with Fiat [F.IT] and BMW [BMW.GE] outperforming. Markets continue to await full Q1 and March sales from VW [VOW3.GE]. Post earnings, shares of Carrefour [CA.FR] showed strength with investors focusing on a resumption of q/q growth and a share buyback program. In other earnings releases, Sony Ericsson JV [SNE/ERICB.SW] reported strong figures with a return to net profit and a continued upward push in ASP's. Markets in Europe pushed into positive territory into 5:00EST before returning to effectively flat by 5:30EST. Into the NY morning, attention squarely focuses on key earnings. Benchmark tech/industrial/financial conglomerate GE [GE] is expected to report at 6:30EST while main street banking giant Bank of America [BAC] is expected to report at 7:00EST. Both names are seen as providing critical sector and macroeconomic level look-across pictures. Volume levels have pulled back from moving averages despite the session being a limited options expression date.
- Individual equities: Bank of Ireland [BKIR.IR]: Provides Update on plans: Sees EU decision on measures by mid-2010; to continue with disposal of businesses assets. || Carrefour [CA.FR]: Reports Q1 Rev â‚¬23.9B (+5.5% y/y) v â‚¬23.7Be; Group SSS +1.6% y/y, ex petrol +0.3% y/y. || Theolia [TEO.FR]: Reports final FY09 Net loss â‚¬21.1M v loss â‚¬18Me. || Veolia [VIE.FR]: Qatari Diar Fund acquires 5% stake in co.; Fund will take a board seat. || Sony Ericsson [ERICB.SW]: Sony Ericsson JV reports Q1 Net profit â‚¬21M v loss â‚¬128Me, Rev â‚¬1.74B v â‚¬1.6Be; maintains 2010 market shipment view. ||
- Speakers: Greece PM Papandreou commented that IMF participation in the EU agreement was due to the insistence of some partners. He stressed that activation of the aid package would not suggest that the country was bankrupt. Aid mechanism wouldl be activated depending on Greece's interests ***German Fin Min Schaeuble commented that Greece was on right track regarding its austerity measures and believed that and noted that Greece would not likely require aid . German loan guarantees and not funds from budget would go to Greece if aid measures were activated. He stated that he believed that the EU would need to modify Maastrict Treaty as it learns from the crisis*** EU's Rehn commented that the EU and IMF mission to Greece next week was to discuss conditionality of financing if needed *** ECB's Nowotny stated that the Greece Aid program was not a gift and believed that the country was now in stronger position with a back-stop measure in place. Greek government has to implement its agreed upon austerity measures decisively and energetically. He noted that the Greek aid package was a sign that countries not left in the hands of speculators and rating agencies. Lastly he noted that any Greek activation would come only when the country cannot finance itself *** Japanese Cabinet Office April Economic Outlook maintained the overall economic assessment but raised business sentiment to "improving" from "picking up". The government noted that economy was picking up steadily but remained in a difficult situation. It maintained the view that Japan was in "mild" deflation which posed a risk to its economic recovery *** Japan Fin Min Kan commented that he did not expect increase in commodity prices to have great impact on consumer prices. There was no immediate requests for China on yuan currency but saw large imbalances in Japan-China trade. He reiterated that the Japanese government and the BoJ were working together towards a common.
- Currencies/Fixed Income: Uncertainty over Greek bond issuance kept the euro under pressure in the early part of the European session as again attempted to fill in the weekly chart gap just below 1.35 handle. The euro maintained a steady tone since then as Greece has yet to activated the EU Summit aid mechanism but will meet with IMF on Monday. The European peripherals widened a bit in the early part of the European session with the 10-year Greek/German spread back above the 405bps level while Portuguese/German spread move above 130bps. Dealers noting that an IMF agreement might underpin the constructive sentiment. CitiFX reiterated its view that it is targeting 1.38 in the EUR/USD. The USD/JPY tested 92.50 area as dealers citing lower US yields as a contributing factor. The US 2-year yield probed under 1.01% and was well down Monday highs near 1.10%.
- Geo-political Reverberations in European air travel continue to be felt following a large volcanic eruption in Iceland on Wednesday. Approx 50% of flights in and out of Europe have been cancelled with the UK and Nordic states facing the brunt of the atmospheric ash. Weather issues have meant the Irish delegation was unable to fly to an EU ECOFIN meeting.*** The UK held its first ever live TV debate between party leaders ahead of a general election. In the event, Brown (Labor), Cameron (Conservative) and Clegg (Lib Dem) answered a range of questions that broadly focused on economic outlooks and spending. Straw polls have overwhelmingly given the even to Clegg, if this sentiment leads to reaction in the polls is yet to be seen. *** Tension levels in Thailand have risen markedly following a brief period of calm after a botched government attempt to arrest three red-shirt leaders. The Thai gov, labeling the leaders as terrorist stormed a hotel where the faction had been holding up, only for the three wanted men to escape via back doors, and more dramatically out of balcony windows.
- In The papers: NY Times article noted that the Debt concerns shift to Portugal . The Times noted that The EU aid package for Greece agreed on last weekend - aimed at calming fears of a Greek default - has not yet had its desired effect. The article noted that some analysts think the Greek bailout might have an opposite, more harmful long-term effect. Instead of ushering in a period of lower rates and market calm, it could prompt investors to test Europe's - and in particular Germany's - stomach for a rescue of other troubled European economies, beginning with Portugal
***Notes/Observations: - GOOG misses whisper number; operating margin lower. - Key earnings of Bank of America [BAC] and General Electric [GE] before the NY opening bell. - BRIC Summit Joint Statement Draft: Urges broader discussion of trade in local currencies and fast reforms of international financial institutions; stresses importance of maintaining relative stability of major reserve currencies - EU Eco Fin Minister and Central Bank meeting today and Saturday - Fed's Yellen: More confident about conditions, but still sees recovery as fragile; Agrees with "extended period" rate stance - Citi equity analyst: See possibility of imminent correction of 5-10% on global basis
***Looking Ahead*** - 8:30 (CA) Canada Feb New Motor Vehicle Sales M/M: 7.0%e v 0.0% prior; Manufacturing Sales M/M: 1.0%e v 2.4% prior - 8:30 (US) Mar Housing Starts: 610Ke v 575K prior; Building Permits: 625Ke v 637K prior - 9:00 (US) Fed's Walsh on "Beyond the exit" in NY - 9:55 (US) Apr Preliminary University of Michigan Confidence: 75.0e v 73.6 prior - 10:00 (MX) Mexico Central Bank Interest Rate Decision: Consensus expectation for the Overnight Borrowing rate to remain unchanged at 6.50% - 13:00 (US) Fed's Hoenig on financial crisis in NY - 15:00 (AR) Argentina Feb Economic Activity Index M/M: No est v 0.4% prior; Y/Y: 5.4%e v 4.9% prior - 16:30 (US) Fed's Baxter
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