Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Tuesday Watch

Evening Headlines 
  • Italy’s Letta Plans to Follow EU Budget Rules, Prepares Tax Cuts. Italian Prime Minister Enrico Letta is heading to Berlin on his second full day in office to present his economic growth plan to German Chancellor Angela Merkel. The program calling for tax cuts for business, consumers and homeowners won a confidence vote in the Italian Parliament yesterday and garnered the approval of bond investors, who pushed 10-year government yields to the lowest in two-and-a-half years. Merkel and Letta will hold a press conference at 6 p.m. and then speak over dinner
  • U.K. April Consumer Confidence Unexpectedly Declines, GfK Says. U.K. consumer confidence unexpectedly declined in April as inflation (UKRPCJYR) extended its run above the Bank of England’s goal, increasing households’ concern about their personal finances. A sentiment index by GfK NOP Ltd. fell one point to minus 27, the London-based group said in a report today. Economists had forecast no change, according to the median of 19 estimates in a Bloomberg News survey. A gauge of how consumers see their finances over the next year fell to minus 7 from minus 6.
  • Japan-to-Korea Output Misses Estimates as Taiwan Cools. Japanese and South Korean industrial output was less than estimates in March and Taiwan’s first-quarter growth was half the forecast pace as weakness in global demand limits recoveries in Asian economies. In Japan, production climbed 0.2 percent from the previous month, the trade ministry said in Tokyo today. That was less than the median 0.4 percent forecast in a Bloomberg News survey of 27 economists. South Korea’s output fell 2.6 percent, a separate report showed. Taiwan’s gross domestic product rose 1.54 percent. Today’s data add to signs of a cooling global economy after U.S. gross domestic product rose less than forecast in the first quarter and China reported an unexpected slowdown. “Overseas demand gathered momentum in the past few months, but the pace of growth is moderating a bit now,” said Junko Nishioka, chief economist at Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc (RBS) in Tokyo and a former Bank of Japan official. “Shipments of cars to the U.S. are slowing.” 
  • China Surprise Gauge Sees Aussie Below Parity: Chart of the Day. China's economic slowdown and falling commodity prices will help snap the Australian dollar's record 10-month stretch above parity with its U.S. counterpart, according to Brown Brothers Harriman. Citigroup's Economic Surprise Index for China slid to negative -27.9, a level unseen since October, signaling actual economic data lagged behind the median estimates in Bloomberg surveys of analysts. "In addition to China, considering the current state of commodity prices, I see strong demand to reduce long positions on the Aussie," said Masashi Murata, a currency stategist in Tokyo at Brown Brothers
  • Copper Set for Worst Month Since May as Demand Concern Grows. Copper dropped, poised for the biggest monthly decline since May, as weakness in Japanese and South Korean industrial output added to global demand concerns. Copper for delivery in three months on the London Metal Exchange fell as much as 0.7 percent to $7,104 a metric ton and was at $7,128 at 10:26 a.m. in Tokyo. The metal has retreated 5.5 percent this month. Futures for delivery in July on the Comex were little changed at $3.2265 per pound. Markets in China are closed through May 1 for public holidays.
Wall Street Journal:
  • Female DNA Found on Bomb in Boston. Investigators Unsure Whether Evidence Means a Woman Aided in the Attack; Russians Allege Suspect's Ties to Jihadists. Investigators have found female DNA on at least one of the bombs used in the Boston Marathon attacks, though they haven't determined whose DNA it is or whether its presence means a woman helped the two brothers suspected in the bombings, according to U.S. officials briefed on the probe. In another development, Russian officials revealed details about contacts between the older brother and suspected Islamist radicals in the Caucasus, including Internet exchanges that led to concerns by investigators that he was trying to join up with jihadist fighters. 
  • Debt and Growth. Attacking Reinhart-Rogoff to revive the spending machine. Perhaps you've read that America's debt burden is no longer a problem. Former White House economist Larry Summers says the U.S. should borrow even more money today because interest rates are low, and his Keynesian brethren are busy trying to discredit economists Kenneth Rogoff and Carmen Reinhart for their famous claim that a country's economic growth begins to fall when debt hits 90% of GDP. Time for Stimulus 5.0!
Fox News:
  • Obama administration officials threatened whistle-blowers on Benghazi, lawyer says. At least four career officials at the State Department and the Central Intelligence Agency have retained lawyers or are in the process of doing so, as they prepare to provide sensitive information about the Benghazi attacks to Congress, Fox News has learned. Victoria Toensing, a former Justice Department official and Republican counsel to the Senate Intelligence Committee, is now representing one of the State Department employees. She told Fox News her client and some of the others, who consider themselves whistle-blowers, have been threatened by unnamed Obama administration officials. “I'm not talking generally, I'm talking specifically about Benghazi – that people have been threatened,” Toensing said in an interview Monday. “And not just the State Department. People have been threatened at the CIA.” 
  • Flood of Easy Money Putting This Region at Risk. The risk of asset bubbles in Southeast Asia's fastest-growing emerging economies is rising, warn economists, pointing to red flags including surging domestic credit growth and rapidly rising property prices
Zero Hedge: 
Business Insider: 
  • Japan March retail sales fall 0.3 pct year/yearJapanese retail sales fell 0.3 percent in March from a year earlier, government data showed on Tuesday, down for a third straight month, in a sign the economic recovery is proceeding at a slow pace. The fall compared with the median market forecast for a 0.6 percent annual increase.
Financial Times:
  • Fed faces calls for radical reform. A senior Republican congressman has called for everything from the gold standard to a price level target to be on the table in a 100th anniversary review of the Federal Reserve’s mandate. Kevin Brady, who chairs the joint economic committee, wants Congress to appoint a bipartisan commission that could lead to a radical change in the mandate of the world’s largest and most important central bank.
Evening Recommendations 
  • None of note
Night Trading
  • Asian equity indices are unch. to +.75% on average.
  • Asia Ex-Japan Investment Grade CDS Index 107.0 -4.5 basis points.
  • Asia Pacific Sovereign CDS Index 87.0 -1.0 basis point.
  • FTSE-100 futures +.27%.
  • S&P 500 futures -.04%.
  • NASDAQ 100 futures +.02%.
Morning Preview Links

Earnings of Note

  • (NYX)/.56
  • (PFE)/.55
  • (X)/-.22
  • (VLO)/.99
  • (AMG)/2.03
  • (PBI)/.44
  • (COCO)/.05
  • (AGCO)/.88
  • (CMI)/1.86
  • (AVP)/.14
  • (DBD)/.17
  • (FDP)/.95
  • (DDD)/.21
  • (THC)/.30
  • (ZTS)/.33
  • (AET)/1.38
  • (HOT)/.53
  • (ODP)/.04
  • (OSK)/.86
  • (TRW)/1.43
  • (DPZ)/.55
  • (BXP)/1.21
  • (JLL)/.23
  • (EQR)/.63
  • (IACI)/.68     
Economic Releases
8:30 am EST
  • The 1Q Employment Cost Index is estimated to rise +.5% versus a +.5% gain in 4Q. 
9:00 am EST
  • The S&P/CS 20 City MoM% SA for February is estimated to rise +.9% versus a +1.0% gain in January. 
9:45 am EST
  • The Chicago Purchasing Manager Index for April is estimated to rise to 52.5 versus 52.4 in March.
10:00 am EST
  •  Consumer Confidence for April is estimated to rise to 61.0 versus 59.7 in March.
Upcoming Splits
  • None of note
Other Potential Market Movers
  • The Eurozone Unemployment Rate, China Government Manufacturing PMI, US Loan Officer Survey, Canada GDP report, NAPM-Milwaukee for April, weekly retail sales reports, Needham Healthcare Conference and the Barclays Retail/Consumer Discretionary Conference could also impact trading today.
BOTTOM LINE: Asian indices are mostly higher, boosted by commodity and technology shares in the region. I expect US stocks to open modestly higher and weaken into the afternoon, finishing mixed. The Portfolio is 50% net long heading into the day.

No comments: