***Economic data*** - (US) Q1 Final GDP Q/Q Annualized: 2.7% v 3.0%e; Personal Consumption: 3.0% v 3.5%e - (US) Q1 Final GDP Price Index: 1.1% v 1.0%e; Core PCE Q/Q: 0.7% v 0.6%e - (US) Jun Final University of Michigan Confidence: v 75.5e
Indices opened broadly mixed to slightly higher following key rumors overnight. Greece is still facing new difficulties as its CDS move to fresh records. The Guardian subsequently overnight saw Greece potentially selling various islands as part of its plan to divest assets to raise capital. Some estimates place the value of some smaller islands at close to â‚¬2M. Other sovereign chatter circulated concerning the difficulties of discussions within the US Federal Reserve. Bernanke is currently facing arguments from some regional governors who are calling for fresh stimulus within the economy due to indications of risk for a deflationary spiral. Speculation has these governors pressuring Bernanke to OK an increase in the Fed's balance sheet to $5T from $2.4T.
Several stocks are making notable moves after earnings reports last night. RIMM is down 5% after reporting disappointing revenues. Several analysts cut their price targets on RIMM this morning. ORCL is up 4% after once again reporting solid earnings and in-line revenues. ACN is also higher this morning after beating earnings consensus by 4 cents. BP traded lower in the early pre market on rumors of a possible bankruptcy filing, yet reversed course following company statements to the contrary.
Financial stocks traded higher in the early going after the US Congress' conference committee completed negotiations on the Financial Regulation (FinReg) reform bill, sticking to the planned schedule. Despite the added regulation, financials are higher this morning as the uncertainty of the process has been removed. As expected, the bill includes a version of the Volcker rule limiting trading activities and a consumer protection agency housed at the Fed, and will give President Obama a showpiece to present to his fellow leaders at the G20 conference this weekend in Toronto. In other legislation, Congress failed to pass the "Tax Extenders" legislation which would have extended unemployment benefits, while increasing taxes on some fund managers and energy companies. US Senator Reid commented yesterday that assuming Congress failed to reach an agreement yesterday the legislation would no longer be pursued.
The market managed to shrug off the surprise downward revision in the Q1 GDP report to 2.7% from 3.0% and focused on the 'sweeping' Wall Street overhaul bill agreed upon by lawmakers. The currencies were subdued with the market participants encountering the usual rhetoric ahead of a G20 Summit to pledge of maintaining global economic recovery. A Chinese PBOC Adviser noted that he expected Euro to rebound in the medium-long term horizon and noted that markets had over-reacted to the European debt woes. EUR/USD hovering around the 1.23 handle all session while USD/JPY drifts towards the lower spectrum of the 89 handle. EUR/CHF cross continued to hit fresh life-time lows as it tested below 1.35 during the NY morning
***Looking Ahead*** - 15:00 (AR) Argentina Apr Economic Activity Index M/M: No est v 1.0% prior; Y/Y: 7.1%e v 8.1% prior - G8/G20 Summit in Canada this weekend
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