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  • Today - Monday, December 29, 2014

  • 9:30 AM
    • Amid the sharp fall in oil prices, the collapse of the ruble and western sanctions, Russia’s economy ministry announced today that the country's GDP shrank by 0.5% in November compared to the same month last year.
    • The ruble weakened by almost 6% in early Moscow trading to 58.56 against the dollar before paring some of its losses. The currency is now trading at 56.18 against the dollar.
    • Several steps have been taken to prop up the ruble in the last few weeks, including an interest rate increase and the sale of foreign currency reserves.
    • ETFs: RSX, RUSL, RUSS, RSXJ, ERUS, RBL
    | 1 Comment
  • 8:50 AM
    • Amid speculation importers have increased their dollar purchases to pay year-end bills, the rupee has fallen towards a 13-month low against the dollar. The exchange rate is currently at 63.6.
    • Nonetheless, after a rough 2013, the rupee is only down ~3% against the dollar in 2014. Slowing inflation growth - aided by easing food and oil prices, and the RBI's unwillingness to cut high interest rates for the time being - have helped. CPI growth fell to 5% in October after coming in near 7% for much of the year.
    • Indian ETFs: EPI, INDY, PIN, INDL, INP, INXX, INDA
    | Comment!
  • 7:38 AM
    • U.S. stock futures are pointing to a lower open today, with the DJIA at risk of losing its 18,000 handle it reached last week.
    • Dow futures are down 0.2%, setting it on track to break a seven-day winning streak. Futures for the S&P 500 and Nasdaq slipped 0.1%.
    • European shares fell in morning trade as Greek politicians failed to elect a president, triggering a snap election in early 2015.
    • The 10-year Treasury yield is down 2 bps at 2.23% and gold is lower by $2 per ounce to $1,193.
    • ETFs: SPY, QQQ, DIA, SH, SSO, SDS, VOO, PSQ, IVV, SPXU, UPRO, TQQQ, SPXL, RSP, QID, SQQQ, DOG, QLD, DXD, RWL, EPS, UDOW, SDOW, DDM, BXUB, QQEW, QQQE, SPLX, BXUC, SFLA, QQXT, SPUU
    | Comment!
  • 6:20 AM
    • Greek politicians failed to elect a president in a key vote this morning, paving the way for a snap election in early 2015.
    • The vote could bring the left-wing Syriza party to power, jeopardizing an international bailout.
    • Greece's main stock market fell 11% on the news, while the country's 10-year bond yields spiked above 9%. Ahead of the vote, the euro slipped to a near-28-month low against the dollar.
    • Previously: Euro near two-year low before Greek vote (Dec. 29 2014)
    • ETFs: GREK
    | 6 Comments
  • 3:54 AM
    • A third presidential vote in Greece today will decide whether the country goes to snap elections, possibly bringing the left-wing Syriza party to power and jeopardizing an international bailout.
    • The euro was little changed at $1.2181, after depreciating to $1.2165 on Dec. 23, the weakest level since August 2012.
    • Voting is due to start at 10:00 GMT, with the results likely around an hour later.
    • ETFs: FXE, EUO, GREK, ERO, DRR, EUFX, ULE, URR
    | 3 Comments
  • 1:53 AM
     
    • Asian stocks rose today, buoyed by share gains on Wall Street and new bank rules in China that will help spur lending.
    • Tokyo's Nikkei bucked the trend, sliding 0.5%, as reports of a suspected Ebola case in Japan dampened investor risk appetite but boosted health-related shares.
    • A man who returned to Japan from Sierra Leone on Dec. 23 is suspected of contracting the disease.
    • Shanghai +0.4%; Hang Seng +1.9%.
    | Comment!
  • Sunday, December 28, 2014

  • 12:40 PM
    | 40 Comments
  • 11:29 AM
    • The German government expects low oil prices to boost its economic growth by 0.2%-0.3% next year, Der Spiegel magazine reported, citing an internal economy ministry memo.
    • Europe's largest economy expects to expand by 1.3% in 2015 after predicted growth of 1.2% this year.
    • The ministry also sees oil prices remaining at low levels in the long term and believes that they will only increase to about $80/barrel by 2018.
    • This coming year, Germany will pay some €12B less to oil producing countries than it did in 2014 (a 25% reduction), said Der Spiegel.
    • ETFs: EWG, EWGS, DBGR, DAX, DXGE, FGM, QDEU, HEWG
    | 5 Comments
  • 10:35 AM
    | 13 Comments
  • Friday, December 26, 2014

  • 7:08 AM
    • If oil prices average $60/bbl next year, the Russian economy could contract by 4% and the budget could have a deficit of more than 3% of GDP announced Finance Minister Anton Siluanov on Friday.
    • Siluanov also told journalists that he expected the ruble's average exchange rate to be around 51 rubles per dollar in 2015.
    • ETFs: RSX, RUSL, RUSS, RSXJ, ERUS, RBL
    | 12 Comments
  • 6:30 AM
     
    • Japan +0.06%
    • Hong Kong closed.
    • China +2.77%.
    • India +0.12%.
    • London closed.
    • Paris closed.
    • Frankfurt closed.
    | 1 Comment
  • 3:55 AM
    • Announcing that Ukraine's pursuit of NATO membership posed a danger to European security, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov accused the West of using Kiev's bid as a way to fuel confrontation between Russia and Ukraine.
    • Russia has been facing economic troubles due to sanctions over the situation in Ukraine and low oil prices, and announced yesterday that it faced a higher than planned budget deficit for next year.
    • The ruble rose as much as 0.86% against the dollar today at 52.1, its strongest level in more than three week, as the government rolled out new steps to combat its decline, such as ordering exporters to sell some of their hard currency.
    • ETFs: RSX, RUSL, RUSS, RSXJ, ERUS, RBL
    | Comment!
  • 3:22 AM
    | 4 Comments
  • 2:33 AM
    • Keeping the BOJ under pressure, Japan core consumer inflation slowed to 0.7% in November, largely due to sliding oil prices. The figure was far below the central bank's 2% target.
    • Factory output unexpectedly fell and real wages marked their steepest drop in five years, dealing a blow to PM Shinzo Abe's stimulus policies aimed at pulling the world’s third-largest economy out of stagnation.
    • The Nikkei closed slightly up at 17,819.
    • ETFs: DXJ, EWJ, DFJ, NKY, DBJP, EZJ, EWV, JPNL, DXJS, SCJ, JSC, ITF, JPP, HEWJ, FJP, QJPN, JPMV, DXJT, DXJR, DXJH, DXJC, DXJF
    | 9 Comments
  • Thursday, December 25, 2014

  • 9:16 AM
    • Russia is facing a considerably higher deficit next year than planned as the economy slides toward recession, announced Finance Minister Anton Siluanov to reporters in Moscow.
    • "If incomes are lower and the main spending is fully financed, then we’ll have to use reserves and increase the deficit," said Siluanov. "One year with a deficit isn’t so scary, the most important thing is to prepare future budgets."
    • On top of U.S. and European sanctions over the situation in Ukraine, Russia has taken a big hit from low oil prices, it’s biggest source of revenue.
    • According to the central bank’s stress scenario, the country's GDP may also shrink by at least 4.5% in 2015 if crude averages $60/bbl.
    • Previously: Russian Finance Ministry says ruble instability is over (Dec. 25 2014)
    • ETFs: RSX, RUSL, RUSS, RSXJ, ERUS, RBL
    | 1 Comment
  • 8:07 AM
    • The People’s Bank of China is taking more steps to boost banks’ lending abilities, enabling banks to soon add deposits from non-bank financial institutions to their calculations of their loan-to-deposit ratios.
    • Under China’s regulatory requirement, banks in the country can’t lend more than 75% of their total deposits.
    • ETFs: CHIX
    | 2 Comments
  • 5:29 AM
     
    • As it confronts the lowest oil prices in five years, Saudi Arabia expects its budget deficit to widen to 145B riyals ($39B) in 2015. The budget deficit for 2014 is estimated at 54B riyals.
    • Revenue will drop to 715B riyals, from 1T riyals in 2014, while projected expenditure was set at 860B riyals, the Finance Ministry said in a statement today.
    • Expenditure in 2014 is estimated to have been 1.1T riyals, 29% higher than the target announced a year ago.
    | 4 Comments
  • 3:54 AM
    • Russia's Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said today he believed a period of instability on the domestic currency market was over.
    • Siluanov added that the central bank could lower its key interest rate if the stability persisted.
    • The ruble is up over 2% against the dollar at 52.57.
    • ETFs: RSX, RUSL, RUSS, RSXJ, ERUS, RBL
    | 5 Comments
  • 3:14 AM
    • Sumitomo Mitsui (NYSE:SMFG) has announced that it will buy Citigroup's (NYSE:C) Japanese retail banking operations to expand services for wealthy individuals in the country.
    • The deal, which includes ¥2.4T ($20B) in deposits, 740K customers and 32 branches, is expected to close in October.
    • Previously: Timeline disclosed for SMBC, Citi deal (Dec. 24 2014)
    | 4 Comments
  • 1:57 AM
    • Dragged down by losses for automakers and airlines, the Nikkei dropped 0.3% today to close at 17,809.
    • Japan Airlines (OTC:JAPSY) led the benchmark down, slumping over 4% following reports that the Japanese government plans to eliminate a program under which the carrier pays no corporate tax.
    • Chinese stocks rebounded after losing 5% the past two days, the biggest two-day loss in 18 months.
    • The Shanghai Composite Index is up 2.5% at 3,046, as construction and bank shares gained following the government's pledge to support machinery exports and on speculation that it will take steps to boost lending.
    | Comment!
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