euro area

Euroland Growth at a Glance

June 29, 2011

The euro area economy lost momentum late in the second quarter but continued to expand on the whole.  The table below looks at five key data series, comparing June readings to second-quarter average scores, first-quarter averages, December 2010 results, and lows reached in late 2008 or early 2009.  The indicators are Euroland’s composite purchasing managers […] More

A Frenzied Wave of Risk Aversion

June 16, 2011

Could Greece be another Lehman Brothers collapse?  That’s the central theme of international markets where stocks, commodities, and sovereign debt yields are tumbling.  Protesting Greeks in the streets have compelled Prime Minister Papandreou, an Amherst grad, to form a new cabinet and seek a vote of confidence from parliament in further austerity that will be […] More

Fearful Markets

May 12, 2011

Commodities and stocks have been hammered.  The dollar and yen are stronger.  Investors fear a commodity market squeeze from higher margin requirements.  Another worry is that European leaders may not agree to a larger aid package for Greece.  Weak overnight data are meanwhile weighing on economic growth prospects.  Then there is the fast-approaching end of […] More

Awaiting Bernanke Press Conference

April 27, 2011

The FOMC is not expected to change its 0-0.25% fed funds target.  The announcement is due earlier than normal (12:30 EDT) because Chairman Bernanke will hold an open press conference at the usual time of 14:15 EDT (18:15 GMT). The dollar is mixed, showing gains of 0.8% against the yen and 0.2% relative to the […] More

Investors Watching North African Developments

January 31, 2011

Trading today has been calmer than on Friday.  News highlights from Egypt include About 150 feared dead in Egyptian unrest. Foreigners are scrambling to leave the country. A Suez Canal officials said traffic through the seaway has not been affected. Moody’s cut its rating on Egyptian debt to Ba2 from Ba1. Egypt’s stock market and […] More

Asian Stocks Sink on Chinese Rate Hike Speculation

November 12, 2010

Equities tumbled 6.2% in China, 2.1% in India and Indonesia, 1.9% in Hong Kong, 1.6% in the Philippines, 1.3% in Singapore, 1.1% in Thailand, and 1.4% in Japan and Taiwan.  Investors suspect the People’s Bank of China may notch up its interest rates further over this weekend.  Stocks also fell 0.8% in Australia, 0.6% in […] More

Little Change in the Dollar Ahead of U.S. Jobs Report

September 3, 2010

The dollar edged up 0.2% against the yen and the Swiss franc and by 0.1% versus the Australian and Canadian dollars.  The dollar fell 0.3% against the kiwi and by 0.1% against the euro.  The greenback is unchanged against the pound and yuan.  Market consensus calls for U.S. non-farm payrolls to drop around 100K, but […] More

Stocks Closing Out a Bad Month on a Weakening Note

August 31, 2010

Japan’s Nikkei tumbled 3.6%, extending August’s loss to 7.5% and the decline since April 26 to 21%.  Stocks also fell 1.0% in Hong Kong and South Korea, 1.6% in Taiwan, 1.1% in Australia, and 0.6% in India.  In Europe, the Paris Cac and British Ftse are down 0.9%, and the German Dax has lost 0.7%. […] More

Market Squeezing Japan

August 24, 2010

The Nikkei-225 closed at 8,995, the first sub-9000 closing since May 6, 2009.  The daily drop of 1.3% brought the cumulative decline since April 5, 2010 to 20.7%, thus qualifying as an official bear market.  The yen advanced 0.9% against the dollar, touching a 15-year high of 84.15.  The yen also hit a 9-year high […] More

U.S.-Euro Area PMI Spread in Manufacturing Collapses

July 1, 2010

The point differential between the U.S. and euro area factory purchasing manager indices narrowed 3.6 points to +0.6 in June, the least U.S.-advantageous spread since December 2008.  Sooner or later, the euro’s downtrend against the dollar was bound to impact the two economies’ relative standing in manufacturing, where currency swings can produce huge shifts in […] More