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Ups and downs

  • Japan's finance minister Aso declared markets go up and down, fast and slow. Investors will need a moment to digest that insight. Industrial production was up, the outlook was down, inflation was deflation (except Tokyo inc energy ex food), consumer spending was poor.
  • Yesterday's US GDP signalled stronger growth ahead (inventories will need to be rebuilt). Today Michigan Consumer sentiment and the Chicago PMI should be positive, but there may be market deflation concerns on a forecast negative core PCE deflator.
  • UK consumer sentiment hit a six month high, although that might have much to do with the fact that the climate stopped resembling that of Westeros and consumers could cautiously whisper "summer is coming". Consumer credit data is due today.
  • France's Hollande and Germany's Merkel had a joint press conference. Hollande does not see the need for treaty changes, Merkel does see the need for French structural reform, and they both agree that cooperation is important in Europe (which was the whole point of the Treaty of Rome, surely?).

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