• Newsflow:
    • In Libya, MQ pushed out of Misrata; in Syria, a vicious crackdown.
    • Ben Bernanke gives the first FOMC press conference. Says nothing unexpected except that “extended period” means two FOMC meetings. Markets take his comments as doveish.
    • Stephen Harper wins a majority in Canada after governing as a minority since 2006. Likely to fund corporate and income tax cuts with spending cuts. Liberals pushed into third place.
    • Weidmann appointed new Bundesbank President, and sounds hawkish.
    • Mario Draghi has now been endorsed for EBC President by all the big European powers except the key one, Germany.
    • India hikes rates, Australia and New Zealand hold.
    • Japan: 
      • Spending and production fall more than expected following quake and tsunami. 
      • BoJ predicts 0.6% growth in 2011.
      • S&P puts debt on negative watch. Does anyone listen to these people?
    • Agriculture: 
      • Northern Plains too wet for spring planting; drought persists in Great Plains.
      • 9% of US corn planted vs. 46% a year ago.
    • Cotton: Reports of cancelled orders — demand destruction beginning
    • Sugar: 
      • Price rises likely to be capped by record Thai production, but rains and lack of replanting cast a shadow over Brazilian production.
      • China may be a buyer given high domestic prices.
  • Data:
    • US:
      • Durable goods orders still growing strongly.
      • Advance GDP drops back to 1.8%; first drop after three quarterly rises.
      • Initial claims are definitely picking up.
      • Personal spending +0.6% MOM — looks fairly robust.
      • Personal income +0.5% MOM — also a good number.
      • ISM 60.4 — another slight fall but remains high.
      • Case-Shiller shows continued drop in house prices.
    • UK:
      • GDP +0.5%. As expected but suggests no growth over the last six months and little post-snow bounceback.
      • PMI 54.6 — has been dropping all year.
    • China:
      • PMI’s remain on the low side.
    • Eurozone:
      • Another surprise drop in German retail sales.
      • M3 growth remains depressed.
      • Unemployment dropping only very slowly; remains at 9.9%.
      • CPI rises to 2.8%, higher than expected.
      • PMI remains on a high plateau at 58.
    • Japan:
      • Household spending -8.5% MOM.
      • Industrial production -15.3% MOM.
      • Core CPI still negative, but rising.
      • Unemployment stable at 4.6%.
    • Australia: Big jump in CPI boosts AUD.
This Week
  • US Non-farm Payrolls, Factory Orders, ADP Employment, ISM Non-manufacturing PMI, Unit Labour Costs
  • BoE and ECB decisions
  • UK PPI, House Price Indices
Next Week
  • China Trade Balance, CPI
  • US Trade Balance, Retail Sales, CPI
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