Atlanta, GA 6/8/12 (StreetBeat) – Stocks were generally weak in Asian trade. The Nikkei was among the worst with a decline of two percent, Australia fell one percent, and the Hang Seng was down almost that much, while Shanghai was lower by a half percent. European indexes are mostly lower this morning, with the Dax and Footsie both off by about 0.7%; Spain however is trading higher at the moment. US stock futures are down about a quarter percent as I write.
*The April reading of Australia’s Trade Balance was a smaller deficit than expected at –A$203 million.
*The final Q1 reading of Japan’s GDP was revised up two tenths to +1.2% on a quarter on quarter basis; the annualized rate of growth was adjusted up six tenths to +4.7.
*The April reading of Japan’s Trade Balance was a deficit of Y464 billion.
*Reports say Spain has requested an EU bailout for its banks. Other reports say Germany is on board with this request. But other reports say that Spain denies asking for this kind of aid. The EU is said to have arranged a teleconference to discuss aid to Spain; that is unless you talk to the EU commission spokesperson who did not confirm a weekend meeting and said that no aid request has been received. But the aid instruments are ready should such a request be made; a sentiment that has been reiterated by Germany. Remember all of this activity on Spain follows a downgrade of their debt by Fitch to two notches above junk status.
*In a different but somehow related matter; Germany’s Merkel say the wish is for Greece to remain in the Euro Zone but future Greek government must stick to memorandum agreed with international leaders.
*The April reading of Germany’s Trade Balance was a surplus of EU14.4 billion; but both exports and imports fell by more than expected on a monthly basis.
*The May reading of the UK Producer Price Index was -0.2% on a monthly basis, but had been expected to rise one tenth on the month. The monthly decline is the first since December.
*The April reading of the US Trade Balance is due to be released at 7:30am CDT, it is expected to be a deficit of $49.5 billion. The April reading of Wholesale Inventories is due out at 9:00am CDT, it is forecast to be +0.4% month on month.
*The Fed is scheduled to buy Treasuries today that are due to mature between 2/15/36 and 5/15/42; the results of the operation will be announced just after 10:00am CDT.
*Minneapolis Fed boss Kocherlakota is set to give an academic presentation at the U of Michigan business school at 7:00pm CDT, or soon after dinner is served.
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