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  • The US Senate has done what most functioning legislatures in a democracy would do as a matter of course, and graciously agreed to pass legislation allowing the government to be funded. Once this gets presidential approval, it should prevent government shutdowns for a couple of quarters.
  • US industrial production should come in at a trend like 0.3% growth rate. We see the auto sector helping boost the figures, which is a loosely positive signal for the health of the US consumer (as they are presumably buying the cars that are being made).
  • The UK consumer should show resilience in today's retail sales (moderating inflation and record employment helping support spending). Japan's consumer was less positive in the December confidence report, but the cabinet office monthly assessment resolutely insists that they will spend money.
  • Some credit ratings are doing some things to Euro area sovereign credit rating outlooks. Financial markets should react to this with the traditional level of supreme indifference.

Listen to the audio version of this briefing.