A glimmer of hope in Kiev

By Mike Peacock
February 21, 2014

A glimmer of hope in Ukraine?

Let’s not count our chickens after 75 people were killed over the past two days but President Viktor Yanukovich’s people are saying an agreement on resolving the crisis has been reached at all-night talks involving the president, opposition leaders and three visiting European Union ministers.
A deal is due to be signed at 1000 GMT apparently although no details are as yet forthcoming. There has been no word from the EU ministers or the opposition so far.

ECB under pressure, March move more likely

By Mike Peacock
February 3, 2014

The European Central Bank meets on Thursday with emerging market tumult bang at the top of its agenda.

Greek turning point?

By Mike Peacock
October 7, 2013

Greece will unveil its draft 2014 budget plan which is expected to forecast an end to six years of recession.

For markets, non-farms eclipse G20

By Mike Peacock
September 6, 2013

The G20 will wrap up with entrenched positions on Syria and a little more entente over the emerging market turmoil prompted by the Federal Reserve’s impending move to slow the pace of its dollar creation programme.

Turning up?

By Mike Peacock
September 2, 2013

Manufacturing PMI surveys for euro zone countries and Britain will be the latest litmus test of the durability of fledgling economic recoveries.

Just a typical euro zone day

By Mike Peacock
July 16, 2013

Spain will sell up to four billion euros of six- and 12-month treasury bills, prior to a full bond auction on Thursday. Italy attracted only anaemic demand at auction last week and Madrid has already had to pay more to borrow since the Federal Reserve shook up the markets with its blueprint for an exit from QE.

Brazil’s capital controls and the law of unintended consequences

June 5, 2013

Brazilian economic policy is fast becoming a shining example of the law of unintended consequences. As activity fades and inflation picks up, the government has tried several different measures to fix the economy – and almost every time, it ended up creating surprise side-effects that made matters worse. Controls on gasoline prices tamed inflation, but opened a hole in the trade balance. Efforts to reduce electricity fares ended up curbing, not boosting, investment plans.

The limits of austerity

By Mike Peacock
April 23, 2013

With debate about the balance between growth and austerity well and truly breaking out into the open, flash euro zone PMIs – which have a strong correlation to future GDP — are likely to show why a bit of fiscal stimulus is sorely needed. Talk of a European Central Bank rate cut is growing, euro zone policymakers at the G20 last week began to ponder loosening up on debt-cutting in an attempt to foster some growth and European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso added his voice to the debate yesterday, saying the austerity drive had reached its “natural limit”.

Currency peace: G20 gives BOJ a pass for deflation fight

April 22, 2013

All the talk of currency wars is mostly just that – talk. This week’s meeting of the Group of 20 nations at the International Monetary Fund was living proof. Despite speculation that emerging nations would redouble their criticism of extraordinarily low rates in advanced economies, the G20 ended up largely supporting the Bank of Japan’s new and bold stimulus efforts aimed at combating years of deflation.

Octogenarian rekindles Italian hope

By Mike Peacock
April 22, 2013

 

The big euro zone development over the weekend was the re-election of ageing Italian President Giorgio Napolitano for a second term. The presumption is that to put himself through this again he must have got pretty serious expressions of intent from the warring political parties that they will strive for some form of grand coalition. That may have been made easier by the resignation of centre-left leader Bersani who was in danger of splitting his own caucus.