Tag Archive: Macroview

ECB Preview: an end to net asset purchases

With the ECB’s asset purchases due to end this month and forward guidance set to remain unchanged, a focus at next week’s policy meeting will be staff forecasts for growth and inflation. At its Governing Council meeting next week, we expect the European Central Bank (ECB) to confirm that its asset purchases will cease at year’s end.

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Yellow vest protests cast cloud over Macron’s reform plans

Recent protests could have a negative impact on French growth, tax revenue and president Macron’s reform plans for his country and for Europe. French protests began on November 17 over hikes in fuel taxes, but have progressively broadened out into an expression of general anger with the French government about the cost of living and high taxes.

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House View, December 2018

We remain neutral on global equities overall, seeing relatively limited potential for developed market stocks in particular as earnings growth declines. We favour companies with pricing power as well as measurable growth drivers and low leverage.

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Growth Contraction puts pressure on Italian Government

The downward revision to 3Q GDP will make the Italian government’s targets more difficult to achieve and complicate the budget debate with Europe. The Italian statistical office’s (ISTAT) final reading showed that the economy shrank 0.1% q-o-q (-0.5% q-o-q annualised) in Q3, whereas a preliminary reading on October 30 showed that growth was flat.

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Surprise contraction in Swiss Q3 GDP

Switzerland’s growth unexpectedly contracted in the third quarter, pushing down our GDP growth forecast for 2018. Recent softening in the euro area also casts doubts about the pace of monetary tightening by the SNB.The strong growth enjoyed by the Swiss economy since Q1 2017 came suddenly to an end in Q3 18, when real GDP shrank unexpectedly by 0.2% q-o-q (-0.9% q-o-q annualised).

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Italy and the EU: a debt-based excessive deficit procedure

European Commission deems Italy's budget noncompliant with EU rules.This week, the European Commission issued its opinion on Italy’s budget plans. Deeming them noncompliant with the EU’s budgetary rules, it recommended that an Excessive Deficit Procedure (EDP) be opened.Of the options available to the EU, a debt-based EDP would be the most difficult for Italy to deal with, as it would last longer and require Italy to ensure its debt stock...

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China hard data for October reveals mixed picture

Disappointing consumption numbers point to growth deceleration in early 2019, but government measures beginning to be felt.Hard data out of China for October was mixed. On the positive side, growth in infrastructure picked up, suggesting the government’s fiscal policy easing is taking effect in the real economy. Industrial production numbers stopped declining, and the mining sector has a particularly strong performance.

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After May’s divorce deal: the road ahead for Brexit

But significant political challenges lie ahead before the 29 March deadline for Brexit. Sterling likely to be in the spotlight for several months.Theresa May’s cabinet has approved her divorce deal with the European Union (EU). A few cabinet secretaries have resigned, including Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab because the deal keeps the UK in a transitory ‘customs union’ with the EU, which in his view continues to give the EU too much influence on UK...

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Italian government sticks to its 2019 deficit plan

The minor concessions continued in the revised plan presented to the European Commission are unlikely to dissuade Brussels from launching sanctions.In a letter to the European Commission on 13 November, the Italian government confirmed that it would aim for a budget deficit at 2.4% of GDP in 2019 and reasserted its real growth forecast of 1.5% for next year.

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Euro area’s fiscal policy to turn supportive of growth next year

Modest fiscal easing could help counter mounting external risks and slowing growth indicators.Euro area member states have all submitted their 2019 Draft Budgetary Plans (DBP) to the European Commission (EC) by now. These show that, collectively and based on EU Commission’s autumn forecasts, the euro area’s fiscal stance1 will turn supportive in 2019, although it varies significantly from one country to the next.

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Japan services PMI rebounds strongly in October

The domestic economy is retaining its momentum, but external headwinds are building.The Japanese services purchasing managers index (PMI) rose sharply in October, surging by 2.2 points to 52.4, after a notable drop in September. The manufacturing PMI rose as well, but more moderately, reaching 52.9 in October from 52.4 in September.

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The Beginning of the End for Angela Merkel

As a consequence of the heavy drop of support in recent regional elections, Chancellor Merkel has declared she would not run again for leadership of the CDU at the 6-8 December party convention. Merkel also said she would retire from politics at the end of the current parliament in 2021. It is questionable whether she will get that far, and well before then, the transition to a new leader amid a loss of electoral support for the main centre-right...

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Rebound in inflation data brings some relief to the ECB

Euro area flash HICP rose from 2.1% year on year (y-o-y) in September to 2.2% in October, in line with expectations and the highest level since December 2012. Crucially, core inflation (HICP excluding energy, food, alcohol and tobacco) rebounded from 0.9% to 1.1% in October.

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Euro area’s initial growth figures for Q3 prove disappointing

While growth in France rebounded, Italy stalled in Q3. Our full-year forecast for the euro area remains unchanged but is clearly at risk.According to initial estimates, growth in the euro area slowed in Q3 to 0.2% q-o-q (quarter on quarter) from 0.4% in Q2. These latest GDP results were below consensus expectations and our own forecast.

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Credit Conditions in the Euro Area Remain Supportive of Investment Recovery

Investment is an important driver of the business cycle and a key determinant of potential growth. In the euro area, total investment makes up about 20% of GDP. Construction, machinery and equipment (including weapons systems), intellectual property rights and agricultural products account, respectively, for 48%, 32%, 18% and 2% of total investment.

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Gloomy Signals for Euro Area Manufacturing

The euro area economy started the fourth quarter on a weak note; the flash composite PMI dipped to 52.7 in October from 54.1 in September. Both manufacturing and services showed a notable loss of momentum. A common feature in France and Germany was the weakness in manufacturing, where both countries posted similar declines.

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Bumpy Road Ahead for Italian Budget

Rome’s budget plans put it on a collision course with the European Commission. The Italian government has submitted its 2019 draft budget plan (DBP) to the European Commission. The proposed DBP is not in line with European Union rules and sets the government on a collision course with the European authorities.

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Inflation Environment remains Benign in China

The headline consumer price index (CPI) in China picked up slightly in September, rising by 2.5% year-over-year (y-o-y) compared with 2.3% in August, driven by higher food price and fuel prices. Excluding food and energy, core inflation in China actually eased to 1.7% y-o-y in September from 2.0% in August.

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Devil is in the details: Italian and French deficits are not quite comparable

Italy’s structural weakness explain higher level of concern around its deficit target.Each EU member state is currently preparing 2019 budget plans for formal submission to the European Commission (EC) before mid- October. Among them, France and Italy’s budget plans have been raising eyebrows. Why is the EC concerned about Italy’s proposed 2.4% GDP deficit target for 2019 and not France’s target of 2.8%?

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Squaring off over the Italian budget

The Italian government’s budget plans set it on a collision course with the European Commission. The road to some kind of agreement is likely to be long and bumpy. The Italian government has confirmed its deficit target at 2.4% of GDP for 2019. This represents significant slippage from a previous budget deficit target of 0.8% in 2019.

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