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Mixed messages

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  • The US sales bonanza demonstrated reasonable nominal retail sales (consistent with reasonable GDP), it would seem. It also demonstrated the extent to which consumers in America are willing to fight for their right for low priced household linens.
  • China's final November manufacturing sentiment data (official and private versions) reported decent economic activity, but it is not really new information. Euro area final manufacturing sentiment is also due - divergence within the Euro area may be the main focus.
  • In Japan capital spending was weaker than expected, falling in the third quarter (an issue, as corporate investment is a key part of making Abenomics work). PM Abe's approval rating has dipped below 50% for the first time since he took office last year, according to the latest poll.
  • UK house prices are rising across the country, at least according to the Hometrack survey (although the aggregate nominal price increase is not yet in bubble territory). This comes a month before the Bank of England ends funding for lending for mortgages - funding for lending data is due today.
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