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Tuesday February 11, 2014 - 16:29:38 GMT
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| | Email US Market Update: Yellen Testimony Plus GOP Debt Ceiling Deal Spark Risk Appetite US Market Update: Yellen Testimony Plus GOP Debt Ceiling Deal Spark Risk Appetite
Tue, 11 Feb 2014 11:10 AM EST

- Kazakhstan Central Bank devalued the currency (tenge) by 20%
- Barclays reports big Q4 loss at investment bank unit
- Yellen speaks!

***Economic Data***
- (ZA) South Africa Dec Manufacturing Production M/M: +0.4% v -0.6%e; Y/Y: 2.5% v 2.2%e
- (IL) Israel Jan Trade Balance: -$1.5B v -$1.2B prior
- (US) Jan NFIB Small Business Optimism: 94.1 v 93.9e
- (US) ICSC Chain Store Sales w/e Feb 8th: w/w -0.3%; y/y: +2.3%
- (BE) Belgium Jan CPI M/M: 0.1% v 0.2% prior; Y/Y: 1.1% v 1.0% prior; highest YoY reading since July
- (RU) Russia Dec Trade Balance: $15.8B v $14.2Be; Exports: $49.2B v $47.4Be; Imports: $33.4B v $33.4Be
- (US) Redbook Retail Sales w/e Feb 8th: +2.8% y/y, Feb MTD: -1.4% m/m
- (MX) Mexico Jan Industrial Production M/M: -0.5% v +0.2%e; Y/Y: -0.3% v +0.6%e; Manufacturing Production Y/Y: 1.1% v 2.0%e
- (EU) Weekly ECB Forex Reserves: 206.9B v 207.2B prior
- (US) Dec Wholesale Inventories M/M: 0.3% v 0.5%e; Wholesale Trade Sales M/M: 0.5% v 0.8%e
- (US) Dec JOLTs Job Openings: 3.99M v 3.98Me

- Anybody expecting newly-installed Fed Chair Yellen to back off on tapering QE is disappointed this morning. Yellen's firm embrace of the Bernanke status-quo, plus the collapse of the House GOP's desperate attempt to extract concessions for a debt ceiling increase are encouraging risk appetite. As of writing, the DJIA is up 0.60%, the S&P500 is up 0.34% and the Nasdaq is up 0.35%.

- Yellen's prepared remarks before Congress this morning were unremarkable. Yellen pledged her support for current FOMC policy and emphasized that there would be a great deal of continuity in monetary policy - which the market understands to mean that the taper will continue unchanged. As Bernanke had repeatedly emphasized as "forward guidance," unemployment crossing the Fed's 6.5% threshold will not automatically lead to a rate hike but would only indicate whether it had become appropriate for the FOMC to consider whether the broader economic outlook would justify an increase.

- The greenback is a bit stronger this morning as Yellen's testimony continues. USD/JPY is at session highs above 102.55, while spot gold off its 4-month highs, around $1,282. The yield on the 10-year UST is up slightly, around 2.71%.

- House Speaker Boehner confirmed that the House would debate a clean debt ceiling bill, saying that his caucus could not guarantee 218 votes for any measure that had even the slimmest of additional conditions. Minority leader Pelosi has pledged to provide the Democratic votes needed to pass the measure.

- Sprint is up more than 5% after losing less money than expected in the company's fourth quarter. Note that the firm still lost $1.0B in the quarter compared to a $1.3B loss a year ago. The company's net wireless customer additions were a big improvement, at +477K versus a loss of 377K users a year ago, however analysts highlight that most of these gains were post-paid tablet consumers and that the number of contract voice customers continues to shrink.

- Pharmacy name CVS is up 2.3% on a solid fourth-quarter report and good first-quarter and full-year guidance. Medicaid provider Molina Healthcare is down 5.5% thanks to big revenue and earnings. The company dwelled on the positive on the conference call, highlighting a +200K enrollment increase due to Molina's expansion into South Carolina.

- ConAgra cut its FY14 guidance, citing a longer-than-expected timeframe to restore the Private Brands segment to planned levels of operating profit plus a weaker-than-expected volumes in the Consumer Foods segment. The firm also offered third- and fourth-quarter guidance that was weaker than expected. Dairy processor Dean Food's report for fourth quarter was solid, but its first-quarter guidance was very weak. DF is down 9.5%.

***Looking Ahead***
- 12:00 (US) DOE Short-Term Crude Outlook
- 13:00 (US) Treasury to sell $30B in 3-Year Notes
- 16:00 (KR) South Korea Jan Export Price Index M/M: No est v -0.3% prior; Y/Y: No est v -2.1% prior
- 16:00 (KR) South Korea Jan Import Price Index M/M: No est v 0.4% prior; Y/Y: No est v -3.5% prior
- 16:00 (CA) Canada Fin Min Flaherty presents budget
- 16:30 (US) Weekly API Weekly Inventories
- 18:00 (KR) South Korea Jan Unemployment Rate: 3.0%e v 3.0% prior
- 20:00 (US) Fed's Lacker speaks on Financial Stability at Stanford
- (CN) China Jan Trade Balance: $23.8Be v $25.6B -prior; Exports Y/Y: 0.6%e v 4.3% prior; Imports Y/Y: 4.0%e v 8.3% prior




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