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Weekly Market Report

22 Feb 2021

22 February 2021


The Market Last Week

Global equities ended mostly firmer last week, amid hopes that the rapid rollout of Covid-19 vaccine would spur global economic recovery.

UK Markets ended the week in positive territory, amid hopes for a swift economic recovery.

UK’s consumer price index (CPI) rose more than market expectations in January.

The DCLG house price inflation climbed to its highest in over six years in December.

In the UK, the retail price index fell less than market anticipations in January.

The GfK consumer confidence index improved in February.

Public sector net borrowing advanced in January.

The Markit manufacturing PMI unexpectedly rose in February.

The Markit services PMI advanced more than market forecast in February.

Retail sales fell more than market consensus in January.

European Markets ended the week on a mixed footing, as concerns over rising inflation overshadowed optimism for a smooth economic recovery.

Eurozone’s trade surplus widened to a record high in December.

In the Eurozone, the consumer confidence index improved in February.

Eurozone’s current account surplus expanded in December.

In the Eurozone, gross domestic product (GDP) eased less than market anticipations in 4Q20.

Eurozone’s ZEW economic sentiment index unexpectedly advanced in February.

In the Eurozone, the Markit manufacturing PMI unexpectedly climbed to a 36-month high in February.

Eurozone’s industrial production dropped for the first time in 3 months in December.

In the Eurozone, construction output fell in December.

Eurozone’s Markit services PMI unexpectedly dropped to a 3-month low in February.

Germany’s ZEW economic sentiment index strengthened in February.

In Germany, the producer price index (PPI) advanced more than market forecast in January.

Germany’s Markit manufacturing PMI unexpectedly rose to a 36-month high in February.

In Germany, current situation index fell in February.

Germany’s Markit services PMI declined in February.

The European Central Bank (ECB), in its January meeting minutes, pledged to maintain monetary support. Meanwhile, the ECB warned that a recent surge in COVID-19 infections posed a risk to the region’s recovery and increased the chances of a delayed recovery.

US Markets ended the week in red, as unexpected rise in jobless claims renewed concerns about the country’s economic recovery.

The NY Empire State manufacturing index jumped to a five-month high in February.

The NAHB housing market index unexpectedly advanced in February.

Industrial production rose more than market forecast in January.

US retail sales surged by the most in seven months in January.

The PPI advanced by the most since 2009 in January.

Building permits rose in January.

Existing home sales unexpectedly climbed in January.

The Markit services PMI unexpectedly advanced in February.

The US initial jobless claims unexpectedly climbed to a 4-week high last week.

The Philadelphia Fed manufacturing index declined in February.

US housing starts dropped in January.

The Markit manufacturing PMI fell in line with market anticipations in February.

Asian Markets ended firmer last week, amid optimism surrounding the rollout of coronavirus vaccines.

Japan’s industrial production declined less than market expectations in December.

Japan’s factory activity expanded for the first time in 22 months in February.

Japan reported a merchandise trade deficit in January.

Japan’s national CPI eased in January.

Japan’s corporate service price index fell in January.

Australia’s Westpac leading index improved in January.

Australia’s unemployment rate fell in January.

Australia’s retail sales advanced less than market anticipations in January.

Australia’s HIA new home sales declined in January.

Australia’s Commonwealth Bank manufacturing PMI unexpectedly dropped in February.

Australia’s Commonwealth Bank services PMI unexpectedly eased in February.

The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA), in its February meeting minutes, indicated that it will consider a significant and sustained tightening in the labour market to lift inflation to more comfortable levels. Further, the central bank recognised that wage growth had been too subdued for years before the pandemic imposed its own restraints on pay.


Currency Update

The EUR ended lower against the USD last week, as Eurozone’s industrial production fell for the first time in 3 months in December.
The British Pound ended stronger against the greenback last week, amid optimism over the pace of vaccine rollout.
The US Dollar ended mostly weaker against its major counterparts last week, following disappointing US jobs data.


FOMC minutes: Fed to continue its loose monetary policy

The Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC), in its January meeting minutes, reaffirmed that the central bank will be keeping its loose policy well into the future. Further, the participants noted that economic conditions were currently far from the Committee’s longer-run goals and that the stance for policy would need to remain accommodative until those goals were achieved.


The Week Ahead

Going ahead this week, investors will keep a tab on the US Chicago Fed National Activity Index, the Dallas Fed manufacturing business index, the housing price index, the consumer confidence index, new home sales, Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell’s testimony, durable goods order, initial jobless claims, pending home sales, gross domestic product (GDP), personal income, personal spending, the Chicago PMI and the Michigan consumer sentiment indicator for further direction. Additionally, Eurozone’s consumer price index (CPI), the consumer confidence index, the business climate indicator, the economic sentiment indicator, European Central Bank's President Christine Lagarde’s speech along with Germany’s Ifo indices, GDP and the GfK consumer confidence index will keep investors on their toes. Also, UK’s ILO unemployment rate and the Nationwide housing prices would garner significant amount of investor attention.


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