The Macro Sweep

December 20, 2013 4:27 pm

Brazil consumer confidence falls to lowest since 2010

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Data has slowed ahead of the festive season, but there is plenty to think about in Brazil where consumer confidence reached its lowest point in more than three years ahead of the holidays. The French business climate, however, appears to be returning to something like normal.

Americas

Mexico: The unemployment rate dropped more than expected to 4.47 per cent in November from 4.85 per cent in October. Separately, the central bank released its minutes for its policy meeting earlier in December. According to a report from Barclays Capital, the board is expecting a stronger global economy both next year and in 2015, while anticipating low inflation. It is forecasting a “moderate level of volatility” in markets, because of the advent of tapering in the US.

US: A pick-up in services and sales meant third-quarter growth was revised up to an annualised 4.1 per cent from the second estimate of 3.6 per cent.

Canada: The core consumer price index slipped to 1.1 per cent year on year in November from 1 per cent in the month before. Headline CPI rose to 0.9 per cent year on year from 0.7 in October.

Retail sales declined 0.1 per cent in October after growing 1 per cent in September. Excluding auto sales, retail sales were weaker at 0.4 per cent.

Brazil: The FGV consumer confidence index slipped from 112.8 to 111.5 – the lowest point since February 2010.

Europe

UK: The final GDP reading confirmed that the economy grew 0.8 per cent quarter on quarter, while the year-on-year rate of growth was revised up to 1.9 per cent. Growth was supported by household spending, business investment and government spending, though exports fell 3 per cent quarter on quarter.

Public sector net borrowing increased to £16.5bn in November from £9.1bn in October. The GfK consumer confidence index fell by 1 point, returning to the August level of -13 per cent.

Norway: The unemployment rate remained at 2.6 per cent in December, against expectations for a small rise.

Sweden: Producer prices rose 0.4 per cent month on month in November, after dropping 0.3 per cent in October.

Czech Republic: Business and consumer sentiment improved for the fifth consecutive month in November, pushing the index up 0.8 point month on month. The consumer sentiment index slipped 0.2 points to 92.6 as consumers reported fears of a deterioration in the economic situation over the next year. However business sentiment rose 1 per cent to 90.9.

Eurozone: Consumer confidence rose to a 29-month high in December to -13.6 from -15.4 in November. Howard Archer, an economist at IHS Global Insight, said: “The suspicion is that consumers will probably remain pretty cautious in their spending in the near term at least so that any improvement in consumer spending will probably be gradual.”

France: The Insee business climate indicator for industry rose 2 points to return to its long-term average of 100.

Germany: The GfK consumer sentiment index rose to 46.1 in December from 45.7 in November.

Producer prices dropped 0.1 per cent month on month, taking the producer price index to 0.8 per cent lower than the same point last year.

Asia Pacific

Taiwan: Export orders rose 0.8 per cent year on year in November, beating market forecasts for a contraction. The growth came from gains in information and communications technology, electronics and textiles. Sales of new mobile devices helped the ICT sector to reach a record high of $11.74bn of orders. By region, strong growth was seen in export orders from Europe and Japan, while orders from China dropped 1.3 per cent and from the US contracted 4 per cent.

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