A day before the European Central Bank’s monthly policy meeting, ECB President Mario Draghi will travel to Luxembourg for talks with incoming European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker. Oh to be a fly on the wall.
True to its word, the EU agreed sweeping sanctions on Russia yesterday, targeting trade in equipment for the defence and oil sectors and, most crucially, barring Russia’s state-run banks from accessing European capital markets. The measures will be imposed this week and will last for a year initially with three monthly reviews allowing them to be toughened if necessary.
The EU is slowly tightening the screw on Russia, with senior officials proposing yesterday to target state-owned Russian banks in its most serious sanctions so far. Ambassadorial talks on how precisely that is to be done continue today and the measures are likely to be enacted next week.
Faith that the U.S. economy may finally be at a turning point for the better appears to be on the rise, as many ramp up expectations for a better Q2 and second half of the year.
Indian stocks have rallied sharply over the last two months, soaring to record highs, although the bull run that began with expectations that Narendra Modi will become the country’s next Prime Minister may soon run out of road.
We get a flood of EU GDP reports today. Germany’s figure, just out, has marginally exceeded forecasts with quarterly growth of 0.8 percent but France is underperforming again and stagnated in the first three months of the year, missing estimates of 0.2 percent growth.