US economic releases were light, with data broadly surprising to the upside. Q4 2016 GDP was revised to 2.1% q/q annualized, ahead of expectations of 2.0%. Chicago March Purchasing Manager’s Index (PMI) was announced at 57.7, increasing from the prior month and beating expectations of 56.9. Personal incomes rose 0.4% m/m in February, matching forecasts. On the political front, Republicans hinted they may try repealing portions of the Affordable Care Act again.
UK Prime Minister Theresa May delivered the Article 50 letter to the EU, officially triggering the start of the UK’s two-year EU exit process. The move was widely expected and had little impact on equity markets. This is another small step in what will likely be a long process, possibly extending well beyond the two-year statutory provision. European economic data were also light. Revised Q4 2016 UK GDP met expectations, rising 2.8% q/q, again demonstrating Brexit’s limited impact. Eurozone M3 (money supply) increased 4.7% y/y in February, beating forecasts of a 4.5% y/y increase. Eurozone inflation grew 1.5% y/y, below forecasts of 1.8% y/y.
In Japan, February industrial production beat estimates, growing 2.0% m/m. February retail sales missed forecasts of a 0.7% y/y increase, rising only 0.1% y/y. Inflation met expectations, increasing 0.3% y/y. China’s March manufacturing PMI beat expectations at 51.8, indicating expansionary activity.
Votes on Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch are expected to be held by the Senate Judiciary Committee, and if approved, the Senate. March manufacturing PMIs will be announced for most of the developed world. US economic releases include trade balance, durable goods orders and non-farm payrolls. In Europe, the eurozone reports retail sales and unemployment, while the UK reports industrial production and trade balance. Japan reports auto sales. China releases updates on currency reserves and services PMI.
Source for all data cited is FactSet. This update constitutes the general views of Fisher Investments and should not be regarded as personalized investment advice. No assurances are made we will continue to hold these views, which may change at any time based on new information, analysis or reconsideration. In addition, no assurances are made regarding the accuracy of any forecast made herein. Global equities are represented by the MSCI World Index. The MSCI World Index measures the performance of selected stocks in 23 developed countries and is presented net of dividend withholding taxes and uses a Luxembourg tax basis. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. A risk of loss is involved with investments in stock markets.