The ECB kept policy rates unchanged at 0.05% but opened the door to more stimulus in shape of an extension to the Quantitative Easing package. QE is a tool used by the ECB to keep Euro Area interest rates artificially low by increasing the money supply to purchase government debt. This serves as a monetary stimulus to foster higher inflation and GDP growth.
ECB President, Mario Draghi, revised down GDP growth and inflation forecasts, citing concerns from recent emerging markets volatility (the recent stock market crash in China), taking the lead from BoE Governor Mark Carney.Euro Area Growth was marked down by 0.1% to 1.4% for 2015 and by 0.2% in 2016 and 2017. Inflation was revised materially downwards to 0.1% this year, 1.1% in 2016 and 1.7% in 2017.
In other data releases, Euro Area final composite PMIs (Manufacturing and service sector Purchasing Manager’s Index) were slightly revised up from the flash estimate to 54.3 (+0.2 point), edging up in August to a 51-month high. Germany, posted a significant upward revision in the services sector PMI up to 54.9 which pushed the composite index up to 55.0.
Positive news came also from Italy, where composite PMIs reached a more than five-year high (55.0), on the back of strong services sector performance. Spanish PMIs performed well, with the composite PMI up to 58.8, a four-month peak, as services confidence hold firm at 59.6 and manufacturing output rose to 56.0. French PMIs disappointed, with the composite PMI revised down to a seven-month low, from the flash release, to 50.2 (-1.1 points).
The ISM Non Manufacturing Index declined to 59.0 in August from 60.3 in July, falling less than market consensus had expected (58.2). Initial Jobless claims ticked higher to 282k, modestly above consensus expectations (275k). The Labour Department reported no special factors in the print, but did note that the beginning of the school year can lead to some seasonal volatility in initial claims.
The US Trade Deficit narrowed in July on a decline in imports. The monthly trade deficit narrowed to $41.9bn in July, below consensus expectations ($42.2bn). At the same time, the June deficit was revised wider to $45.2bn from the prior estimate of $43.8bn.
EUR - 09:00: GDP (YoY) (Q2) expected to stay the same at 1.2%
USD - 12:30: Nonfarm Payrolls (Aug) expected to
rise to 220k from 215K
USD - 12:30: Unemployment Rate (Aug) expected to fall to 5.2% from 5.3%.