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The positive mood on the Hungarian market sustained on Thursday

The positive mood on the Hungarian market sustained on Thursday

13.10.2006 10:04

The positive mood on the Hungarian market sustained on Thursday but the main reason behind the sharp firming of the forint late in the afternoon were again knock-out barrier options, which terminated as the currency pair EUR/HUF broke through new technical barriers. The forint reached the new 4-month high at 264.30 EUR/HUF. It is worth mentioning that the opposition is continuing with demonstrations, which are attracting only limited number of opposition supporters (around 20 000 people). Yesterday József Szájer from Fidesz told demonstrates that Fidesz decided to sue Prime Minister Gyurcsány for failing to disclose true information about the state of the economy prior to the April general election. At the same time the magnitude of demonstrations indicates that the political situation may calm down very soon.

Regardless the opposition protests ruling coalition is working on structural reforms. Yesterday internet server Index.hu uncovered health care policy document, which seems very ambitious. It contains reducing number of hospitals from 155 to 120 with half of them to be converted to the companies. The document also suggest introduction of private accounts in social security. Although markets ignored this information, if the government is strong enough to implement rigorously proposed reforms it might help Hungary to restore investors' confidence.

Today the economic calendar is virtually blank, since final industrial output will barely have any influence. After yesterday's firming, which was not due to macroeconomic fundamentals neither due to calming political situation but rather it was caused by options play we do not believe that the forint might extend its gains significantly. On the top of that in the afternoon markets will watch US statistics (retail sales and Michigan consumer sentiment), which if surprise by better numbers might have negative influence on the whole Central European region. It is essential to mention that the risk of rapid change in positive trend at Hungarian FX market persists, since the rating agency Moody's might downgrade Hungary very soon, which would have unambiguously very negative effect on the Hungarian currency.

(CSOB - Investment research)

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