WORLD ECONOMIC & MARKET DEVELOPMENTS
GLOBAL MARKETS: Bucking the negative tone in Wall Street overnight following a string of poor US data releases, the majority of major Asian equity markets moved higher on Thursday amid market optimism for further stimulus measures from the Chinese authorities to support domestic economic recovery. Y-day’s weak US data weighed on the US currency while US Treasuries firmed.
GREECE: The Greek government submitted y-day to the Institutions an updated, more detailed, list of reforms expected to yield between €4.7bn to €6.1bn in additional State revenue. According to the government’s estimates this should be adequate to facilitate the generation of a primary surplus between 3.1% to 3.9%-of-GDP this year, under the assumption that real output will record positive annual growth of 1.4%. According to local and international press reports, the Euro Working acknowledged y-day that some progress has been made but there is “a long way“ before an agreement is reached on the submitted list of reforms.
SOUTH EASTERN EUROPE
BULGARIA: According to finance ministry data, the consolidated general government deficit (on a cash basis) amounted to BGN 105.5mn (0.1% of forecast GDP) over the first two months of the year, narrowing by 0.7% of GDP on an annual basis thanks to higher budget revenues.
ROMANIA: The Central Bank’s international reserves (foreign currencies and gold) stood at €34. 3bn at the end of March compared to €34.1bn a month earlier. Excluding gold, foreign exchange reserves totaled €30.6bn vs. €30.5bn in February.
CESEE MARKETS: Emerging stock markets and CESEE currencies closed broadly firmer on Wednesday in the wake of better-than-anticipated data in China and Europe. Signs of robust economic activity over the first few months of the year in several CESEE countries pushed government bond yields slightly higher.
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