Greece/China/gasoline prices

No sooner than the ink is dry on the agreement to provide a 2nd bailout for Greece, the front page of today’s FT is saying that debt and growth estimates in a ‘strictly confidential’ report implies that a 3rd bailout will be needed at some point. We’ll see as Greece is being given more time, again and hopefully they take advantage. Either way, markets care only about the here and now and they got what they had been pricing in for the past few weeks. In terms of the PSI, we are awaiting the participation rate and importantly, the March 20th maturing bond will be included. With respect to containment to Greece, the German FM said today there is ‘no need to think about changing the Portugal program.’ After rallying to the highest level since Aug yesterday, European bank stocks are giving back most of the gain today. The other noteworthy event over the long weekend was the move by the PBOC to cut bank reserve requirements by 50 bps to 20.5% and the Shanghai index rallied for a 3rd day overnight to the highest in 12 weeks. Copper is also rising, getting back what it lost on Friday. In the US, gasoline prices according to AAA rose for the 26th straight day yesterday, up by .03 over the weekend to $3.57 per gallon. Over this time frame, prices are up about .20 which equates to about $28b annualized out of consumer pockets, almost 1/3 of the payroll tax cut.

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