Improved Sentiment Ahead of Merkel-Lagarde Meeting

Markets are moving in tight ranges with some upside bias ahead of a key meeting between Merkel and IMF’s chief Lagarde, as well as bond auctions from Netherlands, Austria, Hungary and Greece.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel will meet today the IMF’s managing director Christine Lagarde in Berlin to discuss about Greece. Yesterday Merkel and Sarkozy stressed the need of quick solutions to ease Greece’s debt burden.

Data is absent today from Europe, yet Netherlands, Austria, Hungary and Greece are holding bond auctions. Meanwhile the US will release Nov.’s wholesale inventories expected to fall, yet the focus will turn to Merkel-Lagarde meeting.

As the US recovery is increasing while no fresh bad news came from Europe and in China policy makers are expected to accelerate easing measures after the weaker than expected trade balance report, markets are somehow optimistic.

Thereby Asian stocks climbed on Tuesday with Nikkei 225 rising 0.38% and China’s CSI 300 Index rising 3.33%. European shares also rose after Alcoa gave a good start to the earnings season, with DAX gaining 0.95%.

As sentiment improved, demand for higher yielding assets is increasing, yet the caution ahead of Merkel-Lagarde is keeping markets in tight ranges. The euro is almost unchanged at 1.2765, while the pound gains trading around 1.5465.

The USD is moving with a downside momentum around the 80.95 level, while the yen is almost unchanged at 76.82. The AUD gained significantly trading around the 1.0303 from the opening at 1.0236.

Commodities found support today from the good start in the earnings season, where gold gained trading around $1621.05, while oil rose again above the $102.00 level trading at $102.60 on continued worried over Iran and Nigeria.

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