The Eurozone - Mixed Data Point to a Blurry Outlook

(Update Added Below)

I have already covered this to some detail here on AS in relation with my notes surrounding the ECB decision to raise to 4%. For those of you who are ardent Eurozone watchers I have a note up over at GEM on the very recent slew of data from the Eurozone. Here is my summary ...

The only thing missing here is of course an interest call on the future course of the ECB in 2007. In many ways, I have already dealt with this in my previous notes on the ECB decision to take the refi rate to 4% a few weeks back. For all intent and purposes it is very difficult, at this point, not to expect the ECB to take it to 4.25% at some point in 2007. Both the recent remarks from the ECB, the Euribor futures markets as well as forecasts from Morgan Stanley indicate this. I remain skeptical on this and I clearly do not agree with Morgan Stanley when they open the door to a refi rate as high as 4.75%; this I think is highly unlikely. What I think is important is that the ECB from here on quite simply have to become more data dependant as it clear that restrictive territory is moving ever close if the threshold has not been passed already, at least in Italy's case. In that respect, the data fielded above paints a less favorable picture than the ECB had expected or at least, this would be my guess. Also, at some point it will be interesting to see whether the ECB can keep on maintaining its cyclops eye fixed on aggregate inflation and monetary measures. As for my official interest rate call I have nudged it up to 4.25% based more on what I think will happen than I think should happen. One thing I think however to be crucial is the incoming real data on domestic demand in Germany and Italy.