Biden: Inflation “is my top domestic priority”
At 13:30 today, CPI figures come out of the US where the market is forecasting a print of 8.1%, down from last month’s print of 8.5%.Following this, this evening President Biden is due to speak on the issue of inflation. Recently, the President has given the issue increasing airtime stating that “I want every American to know that I am taking inflation very seriously and it is my top domestic priority.” Given the rising levels of inflation, the Biden administration have said that they are considering dropping some tariffs on China which were put up under Trump, however no concrete policies have been voiced thus far. Inflation has increasingly become a socio-economic headache for Biden as US consumers grapple with higher costs at the shop in addition to higher energy and travel bills. Indeed, just last week a Reuters/Ipsos poll saw US households rate the economy as the America’s most pressing issue.

Yesterday, members of the FOMC were also speaking about inflation with the Fed’s Loretta Mester stating that they will need to see a “compelling” deceleration of inflation before slowing interest rate hikes. Meanwhile, Christopher Waller said that now is the time to make such rate hikes as the American economy can take the hit. Indeed, regarding rate hikes, Waller – often considered a ‘dove’ – stated that “from my view, do it now, front-load it, get it done,”

Hence, as US CPI figures are released, FOMC members will be mulling over their next course of action to deal with what has seemingly become America’s most salient issue.

Coming into the print, the DXY index is currently at around 103.6 – its highest since 2003.

The Guardian has more:

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Northern Ireland Protocol
The fragile situation around the Northern Ireland Protocol looks to be deteriorating with the latest developments involving the UK government rejecting an EU plan which sought to reduce friction around customs checks. While Liz Truss argues that the proposals will hit trade, the EU appear to be taking further re-negotiations off the table.

Following the NI Assembly elections last week (which saw Sinn Féin win 27 seats to come the largest party), the DUP have stated that they will not take part in government if the NI Protocol is still standing. Under the current arrangements of the protocol, goods traveling from Great Britain to NI get checked at Northern Irish ports (to ensure that they met EU legislation). From here, they can then move across the border to the Republic of Ireland without any further customs checks. However, the DUP have opposed the protocol, being frustrated with the notion that it creates a de-facto border between NI and Britain.

The Times has more:

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UK GDP Tomorrow
Tomorrow, all eyes will be on UK GDP for Q1 which is expected to come in at 1%. Recently, fears have been voiced over the health of the UK economy as organisations including the IMF and World Bank expecting the UK to have the second lowest level of growth amongst the G20 for 2023, behind Russia. Of course, just last week the Bank’s Governor, Andrew Bailey stated that the economy would likely begin to contract in Q4 2022 while forecasting that GDP will be fall 0.25% over 2023.

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Gas Supplies to Key Station Stopped in Ukraine
Earlier this morning, Ukraine’s gas network operator stated that they would stop taking gas deliveries from the pipe leading to the Sokhranivka gas station which sees around 1/3 of Europe’s gas supplies from Russia to Europe passing through it. The network operator said that the decision comes because they are unable to maintain the infrastructure because it is controlled by Russian troops. Given this, European gas prices increased by 6.8% shortly after opening. As such, Europe’s energy crisis appears to have taken yet another hit, with investors speculating on further instability as the conflict in Ukraine continues.

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Have a great day.

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