And just like that Europe is the focus again. The Italian government is going through another political upheaval as it sees its leadership resign and shift. Questions will arise quickly about how it will handle the resignation of PM Enrico Letta and the apparent takeover of Matteo Renzi from within the same party. While this is going on however the EUR has maintained its stability and actually has increased in value early this morning.
Part of the reason the Single Currency has not seen any gyrations due to the Italian uncertainty has to do with the knowledge that this type of political dance in Italy is not uncommon. And more importantly it has to do with the confidence that many have in Mr. Renzi as a reformer and someone who appears to be interested in pulling Italy out of its economic doldrums via the free market.
GDP numbers will come from France and German early today. The preliminary numbers will be worthy of note. France is expected to show that its GDP is not negative. Last month’s number was minus -0.1% and today’s estimate is a gain of 0.2%. The outcome will be watched by those who believe that while Germany is counted upon to always be relatively strong, that its neighbours cannot be counted on for well run economies.
The EUR has done well the past week and is challenging short-term highs made in January. Resistance continues to be a force via market psychology for the Single Currency on the surface when examining its trading, but how long will that last? Today’s GDP numbers from France and Germany will have an effect on the market, perhaps not a tidal wave but enough to set up the EUR for trading the rest of the day. It should also be noted that Italy will release its own Preliminary GDP numbers – though its political ramifications are of more interest – and the broad GDP data will be published for Europe too.
Analysts continue to argue about the health of the European economy. Digital Markets Advisor continues to take the view that Europe is under a recessionary cloud which is still making it tough to function in an easy manner for businesses and the public – stagnation. Thus the GDP numbers will certainly add clarity to the discussion, but it must be said that the results unless widely off the anticipated marks will not cause a huge stir. In the scope of all that has been mentioned, it is central banks and political policies that continue to be the focus of investors as they ‘scoff’ at data.
The States will release Industrial Production numbers today and that will be followed up by the Prelim University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment reading.