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  • Prime Minister Abe of Japan has announced his plan to resolve a quarter century of economic sclerosis: Casinos. There are other policy initiatives but they are mostly delayed. Casinos are fast tracked. Perhaps this is a cunning plan to wrest wealth from the older generation?
  • The trend of stronger US data is somewhat reversed today with the release of revised GDP for the first quarter. Using the fiction of annualisation, we expect a -2% reading. Blame the Europeans, as weaker exports are part of the revisions.
  • The Fed's Williams was sounding typically dovish yesterday in suggesting it would be two years before the US was back to normal (in our view it is close to trend growth and the natural rate of unemployment already). The Fed's Dudley reiterated that he saw rate hikes mid 2015.
  • German consumer confidence is due in the wake of softer corporate sentiment data. Italian retail sales are a painful reminder of the domestic demand problems of that economy. The UK CBI distributive trade survey should signal consumer strength.

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