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Czech inflation slipped to 1.6% Y/Y, well below the CNB target

Czech inflation slipped to 1.6% Y/Y, well below the CNB target

10.5.2011 11:26

 - Czech koruna eases despite strong March foreign trade surplus,
 - Low Czech inflation supports current decline in yields.

Both the koruna and Czech fixed-income market eyed key interesting domestic eco data, which have been released this morning. Concerning the March foreign trade balance, it actually showed a surplus of CZK 21.5bn, which is much more than the market had expected. The strong export performance reminds us again, how closely the Czech economy is connected to the German one, which experiences strong export-led recovery too. While the foreign trade outcome is naturally positive for the koruna, the second today’s release has been actually a negative. According to today’s report the headline inflation slipped to 1.6% Y/Y, which is well below the CNB target. Thus, the fixed-income market might further cut its rate-hike bets, which will hardly help the currency.

The Hungarian forint began to recover this morning after falling close to the 1-week low of 266.00 against the euro during the night. It climbed back to the key 265.00 level, which has been the center of the last 2-weeks trading range.
The foreign trade surplus hit an all-time record high of €831.1m in March, just a tad higher than the €831m surplus in February. Consensus was for €717m surplus. The large foreign trade surplus is good news for the forint, while it suggests that sluggish domestic demand continued in the first quarter.

The Polish zloty appreciated on Monday as the state-owned BGK bank interventions in the forex market overshadowed S&P's downgrade of Greece’s rating. Hence, the zloty was at the strongest levels in last 11 weeks.
The most interesting events of this week, namely the Monetary Policy Council meeting and the release of CPI Inflation for April, are still ahead. Until then, we expect the zloty could remain in wait-and-see mode. Prospective further round of interventions made by the BGK bank might slightly support the zloty.

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