Optimism that the global economy can overcome the current debt challenges is what is helping markets. Asian stocks followed the US rally on Friday and cheered the best consumer confidence level in the US since Jan ’08. European futures, the Euro, commodities and commodity currencies got further help at 2am when Weir Group PLC, a big player in the minerals and mining business said business is running “stronger than expected” and they expect profit for the 2nd half of ’10 “to be significantly ahead of profit for the 2nd half of ’09 in constant currency terms.” Also, the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) raised its ’10 GDP estimate for the UK to 1.3% from 1% due to the weaker pound which ironically is sending the pound to a 4 1/2 week high vs the $. In addition, Apr Euro zone IP rose .8%, above estimates of a .5% gain. The one caveat as a result is Euro bond yields are up across the board with new 20 month highs in Spain.
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