Equity markets bounced on Monday, helped by a continuation of the recent deal announcements as Shire agreed to talk to AbbVie. Citi earnings also helped as they managed to beat analyst's expectations, despite weak trading revenues.
It is a busy week ahead for central bankers; on Monday evening Mario Draghi addressed the Committee on Economic Affairs in Strasbourg. Tuesday sees Janet Yellen start a two-day testimony to congress and Mark Carney attends the hearing of the Financial Stability Report by the Treasury Select Committee.
Mario Draghi's speech will be against the backdrop of continued mixed eurozone data; on Monday the EU announced that May saw a month-on-month fall of 1.1% in industrial production for the region. One has to imagine that the President of the ECB cannot stray too far from the prepared path, reiterating that he: is not too worried about deflation; sees risks to the growth; and will introduce any extraordinary measures he believes are needed to stimulate the economy. It would be hard to think what else he can say. He may well be questioned on the recent ECB policy announcements.
One would expect the lines of questioning for both Janet Yellen and Mark Carney will take a slightly different path. They will, like Mario Draghi, continue to be questioned about the state of their relevant economies, but in their cases the focus will be on when markets may expect the first rate rise. One may assume the answers to be slightly woollier than perhaps we are used to, as some analysts are beginning to question if central bankers are becoming too transparent with their comments, leaving themselves open to criticism.
One small and maybe meaningless article devoted to director dealings caught the eye over the weekend in Saturday’s Financial Times money section. Directors have to declare when they trade in their company shares, and the table in the article highlights what activity there has been over the past week. One always thinks that purchases are more meaningful than director sales, for no more reason than directors can sell for a myriad of reasons, but only generally buy when they feel confident, one assumes, of the company's outlook. In this week's table, director buys outnumbered sells by 9-1, whether that is a freak week or a sign that company directors are getting more optimistic for the outlook time will tell.