WORLD ECONOMIC & MARKET DEVELOPMENTS
GLOBAL MARKETS: Market expectations for the launch of the ECB’s long-awaited QE program next week favored European bourses and euro area government bonds. On the flipside, the EUR remained under pressure. Focus today is on US February’s non-farm payrolls report.
GREECE: Speaking in the press conference following the conclusion of y-day’s ECB meeting, President Mario Draghi made clear that the Central Bank stands ready to consider reintroduction of the Greek collateral waiver provided that certain conditions would be in place that would allow the ECB “to make a positive assessment about the likelihood of a successful completion of the review”. He also clarified that the ECB’s QA program does not envision the purchases of Greek bonds for a number of reasons.
SOUTH EASTERN EUROPE
SERBIA: Speaking in the sidelines of the Kopaonik Business Forum, Finance Minister Dusan Vujovic said on Wednesdayevening, that the Republic’s fiscal deficit is anticipated to be significantly smaller (around RSD 27bn) compared to the projected RSD 55bn, due to better than expected VAT and excise collections as well as curbed state spending on capital goods.
ROMANIA: According to the latest data released earlier today by the National Institute of Statistics (NIS), Q4 real GDP grew by +0.5%QoQ/+2.6%YoY, in line with a flash estimate, bringing the annual rate of increase to 2.9% for the whole of last year.
CESEE MARKETS: In line with the trend in major European stock markets, the majority of EM stock markets broadly advanced on Friday. Similarly, CEE currencies broadly firmed after upbeat macro data releases earlier today. On the flipside, government bonds were mixed with those of shorter tenure broadly coming under pressure after the Poland’s Central Bank signaled earlier this week that Wednesday’s higher-than-expected 50bps rate cut is likely to be the last under the current cycle.
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