CEE currencies firmed slightly yesterday. The Polish zloty strengthened by 0.4 %, but it wiped out part of the gains by the end of the session. The Hungarian forint oscillated around 293.7 EUR/HUF despite a recent rate cut.
Also the koruna firmed by 0.3 %, ignoring political stalemate following the Czech parliamentary election. The elections allowed 7 parties to enter the lower chamber of the Czech Parliament. Given relative strength of the parties, their incompatibility and mutual animosities, formation of a stable government coalition will be tricky. All
the more so that the election winner – the Social Democratic Party - is deeply split between supporters of its current chairman Sobotka and vice-chairman Hašek, who is close to President Zeman. The Czech koruna, though, still appears to be much less driven by political uncertainty than by monetary policy of the central bank. Most recently, CNB Vice Governor Tomšík stirred up speculations about CNB interventions against the koruna when he said on Tuesday that he would not hesitate to launch the interventions. The statement contrasts with another board member, Kamil Janáček, recent claim that he (Janáček) would be cautious about crown sales. The CNB board hence seems to be still split in its opinion on interventions ahead of its November 7, and the gains of the koruna in coming days are likely to be limited.
The rest of this week should remain calm on CEE markets. Hungarian PPI, which fell from August’s 2.4 % to 1.6 % in September (more than expected) is unlikely to become market mover. And ahead of a longer weekend commencing in Poland and Hungary tomorrow, we believe that market activity will be subdued.