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Sentiment overreactions?

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  • Janet Yellen has been confirmed by the Senate as Chair of the Federal Reserve (from February). This is not exactly surprising, and the near term path for quantitative policy tightening seems pre-ordained. Her appointment is most relevant when it comes to monetary policy tightening in 2015.
  • US service sector sentiment was weaker than expected, but it is worth reiterating that sentiment data (especially in the US) has been inclined to overreact to the underlying economic data. The direction (expansion) is still correlated to economic activity, but levels less well correlated.
  • The UK BCC quarterly business sentiment survey was strong, with exports of services at a record high â€Â“ although funding concerns were mentioned. In the Euro area we have German retail sales, which may form something of a contrast with French consumer sentiment.
  • The US is offering up trade data. Trade numbers may become a little more relevant than normal this year. We expect the US to achieve a robust 3% growth rate. The question is how much of that growth is spread around the rest of the world through the medium of trade.

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