Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Today's Headlines

  • Ukraine Says Rebels Declare Draft Amid New Conflict Fears. Ukraine said separatists in its rebel eastern regions have announced a full mobilization, as Germany warned of renewed violence and the European Union threatened further sanctions against Russia. The draft was declared as “mercenaries” in the rebel regions of Donetsk and Luhansk continued to amass weapons, Andriy Lysenko, Ukrainian National Security and Defense Council spokesman, said at a briefing in Kiev today. “Everything suggests that the parties are making renewed preparations for violent conflict. We have to prevent that,” German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier told reporters at a foreign-policy conference in Berlin
  • Deaths of Russia Soldiers Said Killed in Ukraine ‘Secret’. Russian officials said 12 soldiers based in the western Pskov region died under “secret” circumstances that a lawmaker attributed to fighting in Ukraine. Lev Shlosberg, a deputy in Pskov’s parliament who also publishes a local newspaper, said the men were killed while fighting alongside rebels in a civil war that President Vladimir Putin says Russian forces have no role in. 
  • Ruble Weakens on Oil as Ukraine Sanctions Risks Grows. The ruble ended two days of gains as an oil rout and threats of tougher sanctions against Russia over Ukraine undermined central bank steps to shore up the currency. The ruble weakened 1.8 percent to 46.6980 per dollar by 8:05 p.m. in Moscow. It rallied 1.7 percent yesterday following a central bank pledge to limit funding to ward off speculators. While offering the least seven-day loans, or repos, in a month today, the Bank of Russia also told lenders reeling from U.S. and European sanctions it wasn’t planning a drastic squeeze on cash. Interbank rates rose, and 10-year government yields climbed to five-year highs.
  • Hryvnia Sinks With Ukrainian Bonds as Violence Sparks Warnings. The hryvnia weakened the most in the world as Ukrainian bonds and stocks sank on mounting concern that an insurgency in the country’s east is worsening. The currency dropped 6.2 percent to an all-time-low 15.84 per dollar by 3:30 p.m. in Kiev, down 18 percent since the central bank loosened its management of the exchange rate a week ago. The Ukrainian Equities Index slid 6.4 percent, the most among 93 global gauges tracked by Bloomberg. The yield on the sovereign’s benchmark Eurobonds approached record highs.
  • Russian Trade Surplus Narrows as Falling Oil Cuts Exports. Russia’s trade surplus narrowed in September to the lowest in seven months as falling oil prices cut export revenue during President Vladimir Putin’s escalating standoff with the U.S. and the European Union over Ukraine. The surplus fell 20 percent from a year earlier to $13 billion, the central bank in Moscow said today on its website. The median estimate of 14 economists surveyed by Bloomberg was $15.7 billion. Imports decreased 10 percent to $25.8 billion and exports fell 13 percent to $38.8 billion.
  • Japan Election Would Risk Clouding Economy Reform Outlook. A potential snap election in Japan next month clouds the outlook for the Abe administration’s economic program as the nation struggles to shake off the impact of this year’s sales-tax increase. Lawmakers yesterday said they were preparing for a possible early election by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, the clearest sign yet that he’s contemplating such a move. The decision is linked to a call on whether to go ahead with another bump in the levy in 2015, one ruling party member said. 
  • Chinese Stocks Decline as Mid-Cap Plunge Overshadows Bank Rally. China’s stocks declined from a three-year high as a rout in mid-cap shares overshadowed a rally by banks. The value of shares traded on Shanghai’s exchange surged to the most on record. The SSE 380 Index slid 2.7 percent, the most in two months. Inner Mongolia North Hauler Joint Stock Co. and Shanghai East-China Computer Co. tumbled by the daily 10 percent limit after both stocks closed at record highs last week. Small-company shares and technology companies also slumped.
  • Shanghai Stock Discounts Vanish as No Easy Money Left.
  • European Stocks Extend Five-Week High as Vodafone Gains. European stocks rose, extending their highest level in more than five weeks, as companies from Vodafone (VOD) Group Plc to Henkel AG rallied on better-than-estimated financial results and improving forecasts. Vodafone advanced the most in 14 months after saying services revenue fell slower than analysts’ estimated. That pushed a gauge of telecommunications companies to the highest level since March 2008. Henkel gained 4.6 percent after also raising its full-year margin projection. The benchmark Stoxx Europe 600 Index climbed 0.4 percent to 338.93 at the close of trading, after briefly paring gains as the U.S. equity markets opened.
Business Insider:
The Interpreter:
  • Fed's Fisher Says Rates May Reverse Before Summer. Dallas Fed President Richard Fisher says while markets expect rates may reverse next summer, this could happen "earlier," in an interview. "Most important not to miss right moment" for rate policy change. Says influence of banks has increased, U.S. will look for new ways to reduce power of four biggest banks.

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