Yes, inflation is a global phenomenon, and inflation moving higher elsewhere will help Euro area inflation. According to BoAML, while the global backdrop will be helping, it will not move the needle enough to sustain inflation beyond the mid-year hump. Analysts think that a gradual improvement in the global output gap will generate a cumulative increase of 5bps in Euro area core inflation.
The problem loans of the big banks directly under ECB supervision totalled close to 1 trillion euros at end-2015, although they declined to 921 billion in September 2016 (almost 9% of the euro area’s GDP), according to the data disclosed by Vítor Constâncio on February 3. But the problem is that this figure is not distributed homogeneously across the banks.
While three more rate increases have been forecast for 2017, growing populism is a crisis of entitlement, and those higher interest rates will squeeze some countries more than others.
There is an increasing risk in French politics that Marine Le Pen will be victorious, which is fuelling a rise in the differential between the German and French bond to a four-year maximum. The markets are increasingly more sensitive, and it’s not just France. There are no political candidates left who do not pose a threat.
UK macro data continues to surprise positively, but the same is no longer true of bank volumes. Mortgage loan growth slowed “slightly” in 4Q16, while corporate loan balances contracted, “as a combination of higher stamp duty and Brexit -related fears” served to delay investment decisions and dampen loan demand, say Citi’s analysts.
Greece’s creditor countries in Europe do not feel like giving it a debt ‘haircut’. Furthermore, Greece says that the IMF is too pessimistic about the future. But Europe wants the IMF’s participation, which would give the agreement a greater hallmark of respectability.
Marine Le Pen is likely to win the most votes in the first round, but she can only count on approximately seven million loyal voters out of possibly more than 46 million in the second round.
Germany’s external trade figures are an insult for the EU and the euro- it reaches the incredible figure of 300 billion euros, or 9% of GDP. It doesn’t look like the US would be too unhappy about getting rid of the single currency, with the help of Le Pen and others.
The advances in inflation figures throughout the Eurozone will be a subject of debate in the coming weeks, not least because of its bigger-than-expected rise. An increase which has a common thread in the form of hikes in energy prices and, to a lesser extent, in food prices.