• richard evans

Geopolitical issues take centre stage

Good morning

Happy valentines day

Going to have to keep it brief this morning as I’m heading off for a couple of days and can’t really keep the wife and kids waiting too long.

The main story for me this morning is the ongoing threat of a Russian invasion of Ukraine. UK, US and other countries have told their citizens to leave Ukraine, making it clear they will not send troops in to rescue anyone left behind should an invasion take place. The words and actions of the West very much suggest an invasion is imminent. Ukraine have demanded a meeting with Russia in the next 48 hours to get clarification on Russia intentions while Putin seems unmoved despite warnings from western leaders of severe sanctions should any military action take place. Worrying times.

On the central bank front we have Feds Bullard speaking this afternoon, remember it was Bullard who mentioned inter-meeting rate rises so it will be interesting to see if he continues with this theme. We also have Lagarde speaking later, sounded reasonably dovish recently since the ECB rate meeting as the ECB seem to be pushing back on market views of early rate rises. ECBs Rehn, Visco and Makhlouf were all pretty dovish when interviewed over the weekend. RBA minutes also expected overnight.

For the record, as I type GBPUSD is at 1.3525, EURUSD 1.1330, EURGBP 0.8375 (GBPEUR 1.1940). USDJPY is off its highs on safe haven yen buying, down at 115.30, EURJPY also lower at 130.65.

One news item that caught my eye was the attempts to disperse protestors outside New Zealands parliament. Not a water cannon in sight, instead authorities have been playing songs by Barry Manilow, James Blunt and the kids song ‘Baby Shark’ in the hope it will encourage them to move on. Not been successful so far. Not sure I’d be pleased if I was a singer and they chose my songs to play to make people leave.

Congratulations to the LA Rams who beat Cincinnati Bengals in the Super Bowl final last night. It was quite exciting by all accounts, not that I stayed up to watch it mind you. I’d already had my fill of sporting drama as my U15s came from behind to win their cup match 3-2 in a close, competitive and quality match. Good to be back to winning ways!

I’m out of the office now, should be back late Wednesday but then am off again Thursday so I’m not suer how many more reports you’ll get this week. In the meantime I have my fingers crossed that we continue to see peace in the Ukraine

- 13.30 Feds Bullard speaks

- 16.15 ECBs Lagarde speaks

- 23.50 Japan GDP

- 00.30 RBA minutes

- 04.30 Japan industrial production

- 07.00 UK unemployment

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