In this holiday-shortened week, attention will be on the US FOMC minutes, housing data and consumer confidence. There will be GDP, PMI and inflation releases across the Euro Area as well as the latest Greek Eurogroup meeting. Look for GDP and public finances data in the UK.
Despite US markets being closed in observance of Washington's birthday, S&P futures spiked during overnight trading, reaching new all time highs before fading some of the gains. Both Asian and European markets traded modestly higher after paring early gains.
As part of the epic, multi-year criminal investigation into the doomed IPO of Spain’s frankenbank Bankia, Spain’s national court called to testify six central bankers and one financial regulator. The previously untouchable now stand accused of authorizing the public launch of Bankia in 2011 despite repeated warnings that the banking group was “unviable.”
Concerns about a potential, and so far unsubstantiated, nuclear "incident", reportedly in the vicinity of the Arctic circle, spread in the past week after trace amounts of radioactive Iodine-131 of unknown origin were detected in January over large areas in Europe according to a report by a French nuclear watchdog.
“I heard nothing in the speech” that was positive, Konstantin Kosachyov, who heads the Russian parliament’s foreign affairs committee, said of Pence quoted by Bloomberg. “The new American leaders have started to reproduce the negatives that accumulated under the previous administration.”
Like a good soldier, Flynn took the bullet. But the deep state is after larger game than General Flynn. It is out to bring down President Trump and abort any move to effect the sort of rapprochement with Russia that Ronald Reagan achieved. For the deep state is deeply committed to Cold War II.
S&P equity futures followed Asian and European stocks lower, driven by weakness in Franch and Italian markets, as French political concerns returned; the pound tumbled after UK monthly retail sales unexpectedly dropped pushing the dollar higher and Euro lower.
In a move that is sure to unleash a fresh firestorm of accusations that Russia is interfering in the upcoming French elections, Wikileaks has has released three classified CIA "tasking orders" revealing details of a seven-month long campaign by the agency to intervene in the 2012 French presidential election.
Whether it is due to overnight news that much of the recent rally may have been due to one specific fund's cover of a synthetic "short SPY" trade, or just because algo traders have gotten a case of overbought robotic vertigo, S&P futures dropped 0.2% in early Thursday trading as risk appetite fizzled and European shares dropped on concern the longest rally since July 2015 went too far, while the yen, bonds and gold advanced as the dollar fell.
German politics = boring politics – in recent decades this equation has generally held true. And yet, with the new Europe we face, that perhaps is no longer the best thing for them to be. Suddenly politics in Germany has become very interesting and the race for the chancellorship looks open again.