Thursday, 28 March 2013

European Stocks Rise as German Data Counters Debt Crisis Concern

By Jae Hur - Mar 28, 2013 12:09 PM GMT+0400

European stocks rose and the euro rebounded from near a four-month low as an unexpected pickup in German retail sales countered concern Europe’s debt crisis will deepen. The yen strengthened.
The Stoxx Europe 600 Index advanced 0.2 percent as of 8:04 a.m. in London, while the euro appreciated 0.1 percent against the dollar. Futures on the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index were down 0.1 percent, having earlier slid as much as 0.4 percent. The yen advanced against all 16 major peers, while natural gas futures added 0.7 percent on forecasts for colder-than-normal U.S. weather.
Asia Stocks Fall on Europe Concern, U.S. Data; Japan Bonds Climb Employees work on the trading floor of the Tokyo Stock Exchange in Tokyo. Photographer: Tomohiro Ohsumi/Bloomberg
March 28 (Bloomberg) -- Shane Oliver, head of investment strategy at AMP Capital Investors Ltd., talks about the outlook for global markets and his investment strategy. He speaks from Sydney with Rishaad Salamat on Bloomberg Television's "On the Move." (Source: Bloomberg)
March 28 (Bloomberg) -- Mike Werner, an analyst at Sanford C. Bernstein & Co., talks about the outlook for China's financial industry. China’s largest banks capped a sixth year of record profits by posting a 21 percent average return on equity, more than twice the rate earned by U.S. and European rivals led by JPMorgan Chase & Co. Werner speaks in Hong Kong with Susan Li on Bloomberg Television's "First Up." (Source: Bloomberg)
March 28 (Bloomberg) -- Philippine Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima talks about the country's credit rating upgrade by Fitch Ratings and the outlook for the nation's economy. The Philippines achieved investment grade for the first time as Fitch raised its assessment, rewarding President Benigno Aquino for leading a growth resurgence after lagging its peers for decades. Purisima speaks with Susan Li on Bloomberg Television's "First Up." (Source: Bloomberg)
March 28 (Bloomberg) -- Emirsyah Satar, president and chief executive officer of PT Garuda Indonesia, talks about the company's business outlook and expansion strategy. He speaks with Rishaad Salamat on Bloomberg Television's "On the Move." (Source: Bloomberg)
Moody’s Investors Service affirmed junk debt ratings for Ireland and Portugal today and said the outlooks on both were negative given the euro area’s “continued vulnerability to shocks.” German sales, adjusted for inflation and seasonal swings, gained 0.4 percent last month from January, data showed. Economists surveyed by Bloomberg forecast a 0.6 percent drop. Italian bonds fell as political parties remained deadlocked ahead of a deadline today for forming a government.
“Just as one euro-zone fire has been put out, another is being stoked elsewhere,” Jonathan Sudaria, a trader at Capital Spreads in London, wrote in a note. “As tiny Cyprus prepares for a run on its banks, the real source of instability is taking place in the parliament of the much more significant Italy.”
Cyprus’s banks will open their doors to customers today for the first time in almost two weeks, with new rules curbing access to cash. They have been closed since March 16, when the European Union presented a plan to force losses on depositors in exchange for a 10 billion euro ($12.8 billion) bailout, and will shut again tomorrow when most of Europe and the U.S. have holidays.

Italy Impasse

Italy’s 10-year bond yield climbed three basis points to 4.81 percent. It jumped 21 basis points yesterday, the most in a month, as Democratic Party leader Pier Luigi Bersani said there was no chance of a broad coalition to end a political deadlock following February’s elections.
The euro traded at $1.2798 from $1.2780 yesterday, when it touched $1.2751, the weakest level since Nov. 21. Swiss Re Ltd. gained 0.4 percent after the world’s second-largest reinsurer said it has settled a dispute with Berkshire Hathaway Inc. and will receive $610 million.
The yen strengthened 0.2 percent today versus the dollar andJapan’s 10-year bond yield touched 0.51 percent, the lowest since June 2003. Central bank Governor Haruhiko Kuroda signaled to lawmakers that asset purchases will be stepped up to stamp out deflation, damping expectations for more novel measures. The currency has weakened about 8 percent versus the greenback since the start of 2013.
Figures from the Commerce Department today may show theU.S. economy expanded at a revised 0.5 percent annual pace in the fourth quarter, faster than the government’s previous estimate of 0.1 percent growth, according to the median forecast in a Bloomberg News survey.
Natural gas for May delivery climbed to $4.098 per million British thermal units on the New York Mercantile Exchange after closing at $4.068 yesterday, the highest settlement price since August 2011.
To contact the reporter on this story: Jae Hur in Tokyo
To contact the editor responsible for this story: James Regan at