Futures slip on Chinese inflation data

Japan unveiled a stimulus plan, boosting sentiment somewhat.

By Benzinga Jan 11, 2013 9:33AM
zurbar age fotostockU.S. equity futures were slightly lower in overnight trade as Chinese inflation data revealed that the PBOC may have less room to engineer a soft-landing than previously thought. Data showed that consumer inflation accelerated in the previous month, spooking investors and creating fears that China will have to go through another rate hike cycle.

In other news, Japanese authorities unveiled a $116 billion stimulus package as part of broader efforts to stimulate the economy and devalue the yen.

Spanish industrial production plummeted in November, falling at a 7.2% annualized rate in November, well below economist expectations of a decline of 1.5% annualized and worse than October's upwardly revised decline of 3.1%.

Moody's downgraded Cyprus to Caa3 from B3 as the country is in bailout talks with the EU following its exposure to Greek banks. The new rating is only two notches above default.
  • S&P 500 futures fell 2.4 points to 1,464.80.
  • The EUR/USD was slightly lower at 1.3268.
  • Spanish 10-year government bond yields fell to 4.892%.
  • Italian 10-year government bond yields fell to 4.15%.
  • Gold fell 0.54% to $1,669.00 per ounce.
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Asian markets
Asian shares were mixed overnight as Japanese shares rallied on stimulus hopes while Chinese shares fell on inflation fears. The Japanese Nikkei Index rose 1.4% while the Shanghai Composite Index fell 1.78% and the Hong Seng Index fell 0.39%. Also, the Korean Kospi fell 0.5% and Australian shares fell 0.29%.

European markets
European shares were lower in early trade following weak industrial production data for various countries across the EU. The Spanish Ibex Index fell 0.4% and the Italian MIB Index slipped 0.52% in early European trade. Meanwhile, the German DAX fell 0.1% and the French CAC fell 0.49% while U.K. shares declined 0.05%.

Commodities were weaker overnight following the worrying Chinese inflation data. WTI crude futures fell 0.27% to $93.56 per barrel and Brent crude futures fell 0.6% to $111.22 per barrel. Copper futures fell 0.73% to $368.20 per pound as investors worried that China will not grow as fast as expected, hampered by strong inflation. Gold was lower and silver futures fell 0.69% to $30.71.

Currency markets were relatively tepid overnight with moves of major pairs constrained to tight ranges. The EUR/USD was slightly lower at 1.3268 and the dollar gained against the yen. Overall, the Dollar Index rose 0.08% on strength against the pound, the yen, and the Swiss franc.

Premarket movers
Stocks moving in the premarket included:
  • American Express (AXP) shares fell 0.46% premarket as the company announced a new round of layoffs and other cost cutting measures Thursday.
  • Ford (F) shares rose 1.95% premarket as the company increased its dividend and Standard and Poor's said that the dividend hike did not affect its credit rating.
  • Yum Brands (YUM) shares fell 1.13% premarket as the company released a formal apology for mistakes made in China and also as Chinese inflation spooked investors.
  • Toyota Motor (TM) shares fell 1.03% premarket despite stimulus talks in Japan progressing.
Notable companies expected to report earnings Friday include:
  • Wells Fargo (WFC) is expected to report fourth quarter earnings per share of $0.90 vs. $0.73 a year ago.
On the economics calendar Friday, trade balance data and import and export prices are due out. Also, the Fed's Charles Plosser is expected to speak and the Treasury is expected to release its periodic budget statement. Early Monday, look for the French budget statement and British inflation data to move markets.

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Jan 11, 2013 12:12PM
Devaluing one's currency is not the way to prosperity.   The  way to prosperity to is to rein in government, make sure governments have balanced budgets, and to cut up their credit cards.

You cannot Borrow and Spend your way out of Debt.   You cannot Print and Tax your way to prosperity either.

Japan has tried two decades of stimulus, massive deficits and massive government spending.   More or the same failed policies will not work.   It  is insane to try the same thing for twenty plus years and expect a different result.

When the Japanese economic collapse arrives it will be very tough on them.   They should just devalue the yen, third world style...

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