Today’s Economic Gossip

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Today’s Economic Gossip

Here are your fundamental points for today.

In Japan, December consumer confidence index was at 41.3 lower than 43.0 which was expected by analysts. Nikkei closed down 0.08% at 15,734.46 and Japanese Economy Minister Akira Amari says CAPEX is expected to expand significantly.

News out of Europe this morning includes an article in the Telegraph, citing a report by the European Parliament’s budgetary control committee. The committee warns that “as a consequence  of the macro-economic assistance programs and European Central Bank lending operations, EU citizens face a meltdown of their life savings”. On top of this potential problem, a story from Reuters highlights concerns that one of the EU’s financial risk advisers has over bank stress tests. The advisers feel that a ‘true’ and objective stress test could reveal that Europe’s largest banks could have a $1 trillion capital shortfall, which would have huge repercussions for credibility and stability of the banks and also the ECB.

In the US, despite the markets selling off, there was cause for some celebration. the Senate approved the $1 trillion spending bill, which will fund the government through to September. All that’s left now is for Obama to sign  on the dotted line and we’ve got one less thing to worry about- for a few months at least. Next on the agenda is the debt ceiling. Jack Lew once again urged both parties to hurry up and reach an agreement to save another embarrassing and costly episode.

Today we see UK retail sales for December, where the consensus is a rise of more than 3% versus last year. Over in the US it’s all about industrial production and manufacturing numbers. Also today, it’s the January 2014 options expiry on a number of exchanges, so we expect a bit of added volatility around the expiry times.

We will be producing a report from NYSE for our own website in addition to our international webTV productions starting TODAY! Wish me luck and have a great weekend J