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  • Newly minted US Fed Chair Yellen makes her way to Capitol Hill to try and teach economics at the House. The steady pace of scaling back bond buying and signals of an unchanged Fed Funds rate are widely anticipated. The potential interest is around more technical questions, like the degree of spare capacity in the labour market.
  • There may be questions about the debt ceiling today, with House Republicans planning to vote on increasing the limit tomorrow (but not in a "clean" vote, which will upset Democrats). Treasury Secretary Lew is warning of impending disaster on 27 February if nothing is done.
  • The BRC retail sales figures from the UK came out strongly in January. Household cash flow continues to support the UK consumer, who at this stage seems to be willing to do their bit to support UK economic growth.
  • Europe has a very quiet data calendar (Belgian CPI is the highlight). The Swedish finance minister was leaping onto the economic nationalism bandwagon yesterday, declaring that the Swedish currency was too strong (where are all the weak currencies, then?).

Listen to the audio version of this briefing.