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Rate cuts since Lehman: 542 and counting

HEADLINES MOVING MARKETS TODAY

Greece's Tsipras Insists On New Deal With Creditors

Greek FM pledges 'frenzy of reasonableness'

Greek Cbank Gov: Greek deposits are safe

Schaeuble and Varoufakis Struggle To Bridge Differencies

German EcoMin Gabriel: There can be no Greek debt haircut, no money without reform

ECB To Allow Bank Of Greece To Grant Total EUR59.5bn In ELA

ECB's Nowotny: Greece may get new debt waiver if it strikes deal

ECB Praet: Greece Waiver Decision Applied 'Clearly'

ECB's Weidmann: EZ states remain fully responsible for their own decisions

ECB's Nowotny: Low inflation not expected to expand into deflation

ECB's Jazbec: QE Could End Sooner Than Sept. 2016

ECB Honohan: QE, ABS Purchases Will Boost EMU Demand

Denmark's central bank slashes rates to record low

BoE keeps rates on hold, readies new signal on outlook

Fed's Rosengren: Inflation taking more prominent role in deliberations

Two Capitol Hill Democrats Seek Details on Fed Leak Probe

US Initial Jobless Claims Jan-31: 278K (est 290K; rev prev 267K)

US Continuing Claims Jan-24: 2400K (est 2400K; prev 2394K)

US Challenger Job Cuts (YoY) Jan: 17.60% (prev 6.60%)

US Nonfarm Productivity (QoQ) Q4 P: -1.80% (est 0.20%; rev prev 3.70%)

US Unit Labor Costs (QoQ) Q4 P: 2.70% (est 1.20%; rev prev -2.30%)

US Trade Balance (USD) Dec: -46.6B (est -38.0B; prev -39.0B)

CA Int'l Merchandise Trade (CAD) Dec: -0.65B (est -1.10B; rev prev -0.34B)

Pfizer To Buy Hospira In $17bn Cash Deal

COMMENTARY

Rate cuts since Lehman: 542 and counting

Six years on from the financial crisis and central banks are still hacking away at interest rates. Australia and Romania's did this week and while Poland and India held off, both are expected to prune rates later in 2015. With the global economic picture mixed and cheaper oil dragging inflation lower, there now are doubts over whether the Bank of England and the Federal Reserve - which have both signalled an intent to raise rates for the first time since the financial crisis - will actually do so anytime soon. Central banks are now running out of space to ease policy further. So far this hasn't caused particular concern for equity investors, though strategists from Bank of America Merrill Lynch suggest it might soon. (FT)

QE Caps To Leave Some States At the Limit

European Central Bank bond purchases under its quantitative easing programme could push several peripheral Eurozone countries to the limit of what the central bank says it stands ready to buy from any one debt issuer. That's because the ECB already owns billions in debt issued by Ireland, Portugal, Greece, Spain and Italy in its Securities Market Programme, which was discontinued in 2012. Greece's SMP debt, for example, already puts it at the 33% cap that the ECB says it will buy from a single issuer. The ECB plans to calculate the 33% cap based on the amount of bonds a country has in the 2-year to 30-year maturity range, not its total debt, several official sources said. (MNI)

Emergency Liquidity Assistance for Greek Banks: Explainer

The European Central Bank heaped pressure on Greece’s new government by restricting access to its direct liquidity lines, citing concerns about the country’s commitment to existing bailout pledges. The Frankfurt-based institution, responsible for oversight of lenders and monetary policy in the 19-nation euro area, announced Feb. 4 that the junk-rated collateral offered by Greek banks in return for regular financing will no longer be accepted, leaving them dependent on emergency liquidity assistance for funding. Here’s a list of frequently asked questions about ELA: (BBG)

US talk on FX manipulation is hollow

The list of countries that have outright manipulated their currencies without repercussions from the US is a long one. China did it for years and you can argue that they’re continue to do it. Switzerland openly did it for more than 3 years and Washington didn’t even raise an eyebrow. Treasury Secretary Jack Lew is speaking to the Senate Finance Committee and not the least concerned about FX. He notes that China’s currency has appreciated since 2010 and that Japanese monetary policy doesn’t meet an unfair threshold. In other words, countries have the green light from the US to do whatever they like in The Great Devaluation so long as they pretend it’s aimed at fighting inflation. Meanwhile, without a hint of irony, Lew says exports are the key to the US’s economic future. In any case, after more than $3 trillion in money printing it’s not like the US has a moral high horse on FX devaluation. If the US dollar rises another 5-7% and the recovery falls flat, we’ll sell what kind of tune Lew starts to sing. (ForexLive)

CME group to end most open outcry futures trading in NY and Chicago

Scenes like this iconic one from Trading Places will henceforth be forever entombed in the annals of trader history, a history in which man is thoroughly replaced by machine, following news earlier today that the CME will close most of its futures pits in Chicago and New York. "The move deals a death blow to trading floors that grew in the 20th century alongside America’s agriculture, mining and energy industries and were once synonymous with capitalism." (Zero Hedge)

 

DATA

US Initial Jobless Claims Jan-31: 278K (est 290K; rev prev 267K)

US Continuing Claims Jan-24: 2400K (est 2400K; prev 2394K)

US Challenger Job Cuts (YoY) Jan: 17.60% (prev 6.60%)

US Nonfarm Productivity (QoQ) Q4 P: -1.80% (est 0.20%; rev prev 3.70%)

US Unit Labor Costs (QoQ) Q4 P: 2.70% (est 1.20%; rev prev -2.30%)

US Trade Balance (USD) Dec: -46.6B (est -38.0B; prev -39.0B)

CA Int'l Merchandise Trade (CAD) Dec: -0.65B (est -1.10B; rev prev -0.34B)

GREECE DEBACLE

Greece's Tsipras Insists On New Deal With Creditors

Germany FinMin Schaeuble and Greek FinMin Varoufakis Struggle To Agree During Berlin Talks

German FinMin Schaeuble says he wasn't able to bridge differences with Greek FinMin Varoufakis

German EcoMin Gabriel: There can be no Greek debt haircut, and no money without reform

Greek FM pledges 'frenzy of reasonableness'

Greek Cbank Gov: Greek deposits are safe

ECB's Nowotny: Greece may get new debt waiver if it strikes deal

ECB Praet: Greece Waiver Decision Applied 'Clearly'

ECB Praet: Collateral Rules Transparent; Must Be Enforced

ECB's Weidmann: Eurozone states remain fully responsible for their own decisions

ECB To Allow Bank Of Greece To Grant Total EUR59.5bn In ELA

IMF says has not discussed Greek economy with government

Italy's Renzi backs ECB's tougher line on Greece

Putin invites Greek PM to Russia

GOVERNMENTS/CENTRAL BANKS

Fed's Rosengren: Inflation is taking a more prominent role in Fed deliberations

Two Capitol Hill Democrats Seek Details on Fed Leak Probe

Denmark's central bank slashes rates to record low

ECB's Nowotny: Low inflation not expected to expand into deflation

ECB's Jazbec: QE Could End Sooner Than Sept. 2016

ECB Honohan: QE, ABS Purchases Will Boost EMU Demand

BoE keeps rates on hold, readies new signal on outlook

US House Tax Panel Chief Says TPA Critical For US Trade Agenda

France Hollande: ECB Greece Decision Puts Onus On EU Govts

France Moscovici: QE is significant enough to have macroeconomic impact

IMF nominates Abe adviser as deputy MD

Kerry urges Russia to halt Ukrainian aggression

Russia still seeking federal structure in Ukraine, sees growing risk of Ukraine split ?BBG

Russia counting on Merkel and Hollande for Ukraine compromise --BBG

FIXED INCOME

Greek stocks plunge and bond yields soar

Danish bond yields tumble after rate cut

Sweden issues rare euro bond at almost zero yield

Record Volume Once Again in Corporate Bonds

EQUITIES

Pfizer To Buy Hospira In $17 Billion Cash Deal

Sony's Amy Pascal to step down as co-chairman

Dupont says Trian talks collapsed over Peltz seat

Michael Kors Gives Soft Outlook and Records Narrower Margins

Sprint Takes $1.9 Billion Charge To Write Down Brand Name

Ford's Valencia Plant to Increase Production by 40 Percent

Estee Lauder revenue beats estimates on strong holiday sales

Cummins cuts forecast due to weak overseas demand, strong dollar

Philip Morris Int'l 4Q Profit Falls About 19 Percent

Alpari administrators give up on rescue

BNP Paribas stages comeback despite euro woes

Investors cheer rise in Sanofi profits

AstraZeneca misses earnings forecasts

CURRENCIES, COMMODITIES, METALS

Talk of SNB buying EURUSD spurs the euro rally

Euro regains composure after ECB's Greek gambit

Sterling having its best week in a year

Dollar index remains lower after U.S. economic reports

EU considers energy union to secure gas supplies --FAZ

WTI futures settle up 4.2% at $50.48

EMERGING MARKETS

Ukraine's central bank lifts key discount rate

Ukraine FX reserves plunge to just $6.42bn

Nigerian naira hits record low amid oil slump

Ukraine's hryvnia crashes after rate hike