Bundesbank cuts growth and inflation forecast, sees balanced risks. After the ECB published its updated set of staff projections yesterday, the Bundesbank released its projections for Germany, which were taking into account in the ECB calculations. The working day adjusted forecast for GDP was cut to 1.6% this year from 1.7% previously and the projection for 2017 was cut to 1.6% from 1.9%. 2018 growth is seen at 1.7%. At the same time, the inflation projections were cut to 0.2% this year and 1.5% next year from 1.1% and 2.0% previously. Sharp downward revisions with the Bundesbank blaming oil price variations and seeing balanced risks, but with inflation seen at just 1.7% in 2018, this means headline rates will remain below the 2% upper limit for price stability for a lengthy period.
Eurozone services PMI revised up to 53.3 from 53.1 and the composite revised up to 53.1 from 52.9. This means the services reading improved slightly over the month, and the composite now shows an acceleration on the overall pace of activity, compared to a slight deceleration suggested by the initial numbers. National data was mixed, and especially the fact that the Italian services PMI fell back into contraction territory at just 49.8 and the overall composite Italian PMI is barely holding above the boom-bust line at 50.8 is worrying. Bund futures recovered earlier losses on the weak Italian numbers and as the French readings were revised down, but are off highs as German and Eurozone numbers were revised higher. Uncertainty remains high but the mixed data will add to the disappointment over the ECB’s failure to announce new measures.
All quite on the forex front as markets hunker down ahead of the U.S. employment report showstopper, to which the possibility, or not, of a Fed rate hike on June 15 hinges. The G3 currencies are on the day so far showing less than a net 0.15% net change against one another. EURUSD has been locked in the mid 1.11s and USDJPY has taken root around 109.00, having recovered from the 18-day low at 108.49 that was seen during the Tokyo session.
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