Market Talk – Wednesday, March 31


  • French Consumer Spending (MoM) (Feb) increased from -4.9% to 0.0%
  • French CPI (YoY) increased from 0.6% to 1.1%
  • French CPI (MoM) increased from 0.0% to 0.6%
  • French HICP (YoY) increased from 0.8% to 1.4%
  • French HICP (MoM) increased from 0.0% to 0.7%
  • French PPI (MoM) (Feb) decreased from 1.2% to 0.8%


  • German Unemployment Change (Feb) increased from -36K to -8K
  • German Unemployment Rate (Mar) remain the same at 6.0%
  • German Unemployment (Mar) decreased from 2.752M to 2.745M
  • German Unemployment n.s.a. (Mar) decreased from 2.904M to 2.827M


  • ZEW Expectations (Mar) increased from 55.5 to 66.7


  • Spanish Current account (Jan) decreased from 0.53B to -1.01B


  • Central Bank Currency Purchase (Apr) decreased from -1,700.0M to -1,800.0M


  • Italian CPI (YoY) (Mar) increased from 0.6% to 0.8%
  • Italian CPI (MoM) (Mar) increased from 0.1% to 0.3%
  • Italian HICP (YoY) (Mar) decreased from 1.0% to 0.6%
  • Italian HICP (MoM) (Mar) increased from -0.2% to 1.8%

Euro Zone:

  • Core CPI (MoM) increased from 0.1% to 0.3%
  • Core CPI (YoY) decreased from 1.1% to 0.9%
  • CPI (YoY) (Mar) increased from 0.9% to 1.3%
  • CPI (MoM) increased from 0.2% to 0.9%
  • CPI, n.s.a (Mar) increased from 105.54 to 106.54
  • HICP ex Energy & Food (YoY) (Mar) decreased from 1.2% to 1.0%
  • HICP ex Energy and Food (MoM) increased from 0.1% to 0.8%


Mortgage rates in the US are on the slowly rising as many hope this will quell demand. The 30-year-fixed-rate mortgage fell to 3.33% last week compared to 3.36% on homes with a 20% down payment. However, this is the first time in seven consecutive weeks that rates were reportedly higher. Applications for mortgages declined 2.2%, the Mortgage Bankers Association reported. Refinances fell 3% on a weekly basis, and notably sank 32% YoY. The drastic demand combined with low inventory has pushed many potential buyers out of the marketplace. “Record-low inventory is pushing home-price growth at double the rate from a year ago, and even above the 10% growth rates seen in 2005. The housing market is in desperate need of more inventory to cool price growth and preserve affordability,” Joel Kan, an analyst for the Mortgage Bankers Association, noted.

Monthly unemployment data by state has shown that the US states with the least restrictive coronavirus prevention measures have significantly lower rates of unemployment. Although the national unemployment rate is 6.2%, states free from strict lockdown measures have nearly reached pre-pandemic rates. Unemployment in South Dakota was just 2.9% in February, with Utah (3%), and Nebraska (3.1%) also seeing drastic improvements. In contrast, states with harsh lockdown measures such as Hawaii (9.2%), New York (8.9%), and Connecticut (8.5%) are suffering a jobless crisis. “There is a clear trend here. Free states have largely avoided the labor market carnage associated with the COVID pandemic, while locked states have caused higher levels of unemployment — without guaranteeing better health outcomes from the pandemic,” the Foundation for Economic Education released stated.

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