WORLD ECONOMIC & MARKET DEVELOPMENTS
GLOBAL MARKETS: Political uncertainty is focused on France following news that the candidate of the socialist party for the upcoming presidential election, Benoit Haman, is in talks with the candidate of the far-left party, Jean-Luc Melenchon, aiming to form an alliance behind one candidate. On the view that such a development, if realized, could potentially increase the chances of the National Front party winning at the second round on May 4, the EUR was under pressure while German government bonds retained a firm tone. With investors looking for signals over the timing of the next Fed rate hike, focus this week is on Wednesday’s release of the FOMC meeting minutes.
GREECE: Τhe Eurogroup that is scheduled to convene today will take stock of the ongoing implementation of Greece’s macroeconomic adjustment programme focusing on plans to carry forward the second review of the programme. The best possible outcome today would be a decision for the institutions’ technical staff to return to Athens with an aim to reach a Staff Level Agreement in March. Such an outcome may come about if Greece and the official lenders agree at least on a general framework of measures to be legislated upfront. The specification of the measures will take place once the technical staff return to Athens and determine whether the fiscal over-performance in 2016 was of a temporary or sustainable nature.
SOUTH EASTERN EUROPE
BULGARIA: The local equity market closed in red territory last week as illiquidity and lack of corporate triggers dampened investor sentiment, despite upbeat macro data for the country including a 3.4% GDP growth print for Q4 2016. Meanwhile, the domestic and external bond markets closed little changed.
ROMANIA: The EUR/RON progressively moved higher over the past week following Central Bank comments that there is no room for further appreciation of the local currency. Separately, near-term RON rates remained close to the central bank’s deposit facility of 0.25% and RON government bonds ended little changed.
SERBIA: The EUR/RSD closed at 123.85/05 on Friday, little changed on a weekly basis, remaining bound within a tight range of 123.80/00 – 123.90/10. Recent news regarding the Serbian presidential election appeared to have a limited impact on the FX markets.
Viewers can log herebelow and read the full report: Daily Overview February 20 2017