tv Bloomberg Markets European Close Bloomberg January 24, 2022 11:00am-12:00pm EST
european close," with guy johnson and alix steel. ♪ guy: 30 minutes to the close, the price action looks like this. european equities off the close. the russian story front and center for europe. the russian market down by 6% today. you have seen a big pickup in the cds. the currency is under pressure. we will talk more about what is happening in just a moment surrounding this story. net result for europe, higher gas prices, significantly higher. we are nowhere near where we were last year in terms of the highs, but nevertheless, volatility continues to be a big factor when it comes to the energy story. it is so intertwined with what
is happening with the geopolitical story surrounding ukraine. but we've also got the fed this week. there is much to think about. alix: here in the u.s., we are off the lows, but still a brutal day. volume is quite high. when you have that kind of high-volume, you wonder if you are in capitulation mode. the s&p is actually off by 2.3%. the nasdaq off 2.5%. it was worse, believe it or not. the russell 2000 at one point intraday bear market from a november high. now we are down by about 1.6%. it going, some questions as to what bitcoin is correlated with. is it correlated to geopolitical risk, financial conditions, to the fed? seeing some real pressure there, still off by 3.4%. it raises the question, where is the safety? you've got the dollar higher as well and a move into the bond market, yet still relatively calm when you see the s&p down 10% in three weeks. he would have thought you would see a bigger move in the bond market, but yields lower by about three basis points as we head into the fed on wednesday.
guy: today a focus on what is happening with ukraine. eu foreign ministers are still meeting in brussels on the tensions on the border. we are expecting a news conference as well over the next hour or so from the nato secretary-general jens stoltenberg. we will talk about all of this through the hour and with the policy response is going to look like. it's talk no about what is happening with the price action we are seeing in europe. europe is playing catch-up to a certain extent. it is meant to represent value, but nevertheless, it is still a story you want to focus on, but in absolute terms, these equity markets are under pressure. joachim, talk about what you're seeing on the screens in front of you. the euro stoxx 50 was down 4%. what you make of this price action? joachim: it certainly looks like
a really deep red sea across the board. the interesting thing is until basically friday, the main story was the fears of fed rate hikes and bank of england rate hikes in the u.k. this has now been compounded at the worst possible time, in the middle of the fears, we are getting increasing signs that the situation in russia is heating up, so we are getting compounded effect in the middle of a winter. however, i think the main fear remains high inflation in general across the western countries. alix: the narrative at the end of last year was let's rotate into value, and dow you is going to mean europe. is that going to hold? joachim: i think it does. you see a very strong rotation into value stocks in europe, in
the u.k., and within the u.s., with the nasdaq being one of the victims of this situation. but you also do see the outperformance of the jurassic park stocks in the u.k. and in europe, so as a result, when you look at it from a duration perspective, basically looking at the average duration of cash flows in europe versus the u.s. and in the u.k., the u.k. and europe have significantly shorter duration for the equity markets, and that means that is right fears persist, these markets should continue to outperform even though they obviously can't avoid losses. guy: so this is a relative trade. i'm still going to lose money. i am just going to lose less of it if i invest in these dinosaur stocks. alix: which feels reassuring. [laughter] joachim: it doesn't sound very reassuring, but that is the situation that we are in. the dinosaur stocks are down.
in fact, as you look at it today , energy as a sector in europe and the u.k. is not one of the best performing sectors, which is what you would expect if ukraine and russia would be the top driver of stock markets. alix: we have also seen some price action in ecb market pricing. a 10 basis point hike is pushed back to december from october. was going to be the readthrough from the selloff of potentially tighter financial conditions and the central bank reaction? joachim: at the moment, markets are really freaking out and kind of going into the extremes in terms of central banks hiking 50 basis points or hiking more than previously expected. in the end, we are already seeing first indications of declining wage growth and declining inflationary pressures. also in the energy space over the last couple of months. that means that we think the central banks will probably not
hike on wednesday, but leave it for the march period. i think what we will see on wednesday is with the fed shown again that they are on top of things, but they are not in a rush to hike interest rates, that could lead to some relief, particularly in the hard-hit growth stocks. guy: long-term, the market looks like it is beginning to price insignificantly slower growth. let's talk about that. are we heading towards a recession? is that what we really need to start thinking about? at the moment we are freaked out about rates, and that seems to be having an impact on values, but i wonder at the end of the discussion, what we are now starting to see is a slowdown being priced and. joachim: we are definitely seeing a growth slowdown being factored in. are we heading to recession? definitely not in 2022.
we are coming from such a high level of growth, and the economy is still recovering from the depths of the pendant recession, unlike in the u.s. -- dependent recession, unlike in the u.s. -- the pandemic recession, unlike in the u.s. for 2022, and pretty relaxed we are not going to see a recession. however, it could well be that in 2023, with a continued rate hikes cycle, growth will slow down to levels of to present and even below, putting us closer to the risk of recession in 2023. alix: i wonder how we pair this with the energy crisis and what is happening with russia and ukraine because as got pointed out, natural gas prices in europe are well if the highs we saw last year, but still up 16%, 17% today on those fears. you have the structural shift of a green energy transition, and i am wondering how that plays into the lack of growth potential in europe. joachim: in a sense, it is not
good for growth throughout the winter months when inflation will remain high, and of russia invades ukraine or we get an escalation on that front, it will get even worse in the sense that energy inflation will spike even more and reduce consumption as fears grow that people will not have enough money beyond their utility bills to spend on nice luxury things or other discretionary spending. so it will hamper growth, but i thing it is a short-term development because as we enter spring, natural gas prices should start to relax again. guy: but we are in a situation where a number of european companies are very exposed to russia. russia represents the fifth largest trading partner for europe. we have already factored in sanctions. sanctions have had an impact, and we are trying to calibrate potential new sanctions now,
where there to be military action. you buy -- what impact do you think it would have on european industrials? what impact do you think it would have on european banks if we were to see significant escalation in sanctions? how much does that take the shine off of owning european stocks? joachim: it would certainly have a significant impact, particularly on industrial companies. when it comes to the banking sector, it depends very much on the individual banks. banks that have a bigger exposure to eastern europe will definitely be harder hit, but a lot of banks will actually benefit from higher interest rates that increase rate margins and lending margins. so there's a bit of a mix, but i would definitely stay away from industrials and partially also from the automotive sector in europe, and focus more on companies in the renewables space, but also in the energy space, and in lenders with
little exposure to eastern europe and russia. alix: last question as we still look at stocks off 3.5%, what is your safety trade? joachim: in the short term, as a hedge against russia and ukraine geopolitical things, it is definitely the energy companies like shell, bp, while i would say any kind of setbacks in big retail companies and consumer companies, whether we are talking about indie techs or about other companies like that, should be used as a buying opportunity into spring as we come out of this crisis eventually, once the heating season is over. alix: it is deftly going to be an interesting few months and interesting few hours. thank you so much. coming up, at the same time all of this is happening, use have political turmoil. italy is beginning its process for tooting -- for choosing its
always a pleasure. talk to us about what is happening, how it works, and what the result -- and win the result is going to start to become a little clearer. reporter: not today, i would say, with some certainty. there are 1008 voters, the numbers of the lower house, members of the senate, 58 regional delegates, and senators for life, they are all taking turns to go into a box in the middle of the floor of the lower house and write their name on a piece of paper. no official names. at the end of this process, each voter gets called individually because of covid regulations, to make the process even slower. the head of the lower house is going to read the names out loud, and we will count and keep track, and most of the parties at least today will vote an empty ballot, so we will have no match today, unfortunately. alix: when do we know? that is today.
what do the next four days, 5, 6, 7, 8 look like? reporter: monday to wednesday, the threshold to be elected is 2/3. that is too broad a majority in such a fragmented place it is today. from thursday, the majority will be 50%, so what will be easier to pass the candidate, and there is less risk of an incident because of course, they have a secret ballot. so we will see what happens, but i think that thursday we might be getting closer to a result. alix: i don't know how efficient this all sounds, but ok. thank you very much. appreciate it. let's get more insight now into what all of this means. silvia ardagna is barclays' head of european comic
research. silvia: good afternoon. the best case scenario is one in which the current prime minister is elected president, and the we have an institutional government that will continue the agenda that has been set by the current p.m. so that there is policy continuity, there's a guarantee for the next seven years that mr. mario draghi will assure that economic policies in italy will be such that the ngo funds will be dispersed in a significant way. guy: what is the worst case scenario? silvia: the worst case scenario that we identify in our report is one in which mario draghi will not be part of the political scene in italy anymore, neither is the president nor is the prime minister. this can happen in case he is
not elected president, in case the current majority that support his government breaks, and that would basically lead to -- alix: i read that we want, i mean the markets, would want mario draghi to stay prime minister because he can be more effectual that way, and the presidential post is more ceremonial. why do you not see it that way? silvia: first, i would say it is also a time horizon, whether you are trading off of the short-term versus the medium term. we have elections in 2023, and mario draghi is a technocrat, unlike a keep going. we have learned that the president has pretty important powers. he has been crucial in the
formation of various cabinets, including the one with mario draghi in charge. guy: prime minister mario draghi has elevated italy's position in europe. you see my are -- you see mario draghi and emmanuel macron fighting for loose rules when it comes to the environmental stability pact. he has been key for stability in brussels because he is seen as being a stability candidates. i appreciate what you are saying about presidents, about that role having significant duties, but nevertheless, can he still fulfill the role i have just talked about if he is no longer prime minister? ? 's silvia: -- no longer prime and -- no longer prime minister? silvia: i think so. more importantly, political stability and the government infrastructure that is already put in place in terms of the
reforms, the use of funds should allow the next government to carry on the work. guy: can i ask a broader question about what is happening in europe right now? there is the potential for a significant energy crisis over the next few months in europe, where there to be conflicts in ukraine. i'm wondering how you think europe, europe's governments, europe's institutions will respond to that. we had a crisis with the pandemic, and europe, and some people's minds, had a hamiltonian moment where it started borrowing together, having joint debt, and spending money together, the next generation fund. using there is a possibility that europe, the eu will respond in similar fashion if we have a crisis in ukraine and we have a major energy crisis?
using there's the possibility of acting in a unified way in the debt markets to find a way out of this? silvia: yes. the crisis is fairly deep. i would notice that the european fiscal roles are still not back to what they were. to counteract the negative impact that energy prices are having on disposable income and consumption, european governments are already putting in place fiscal policies to try to affect lower income households. alix: let's follow on that for a moment. if you take a look at energy prices last year, they saw an enormous incline. we have not seen that kind of
rally today, but you're still up 7% with european natural gas prices. if we continue here, and there is a limited offramp, what is the economic damage that these are going to inflict on the economy? silvia: there's going to be a negative impact on consumption. energy consumption is a particularly large share of the basket of european households. it varies across the various member states, but overall, europe is an energy importer, so clearly it is negative in terms of trade shock. i think it tends to reflect the broader economy a function of monetary and accommodative fiscal policy that is put in place. guy: how do you see this impacting the debate around the growth and stability pact? italy and france want areas of spending including the energy
transition to be excluded. if we see an energy crisis in europe, do you think that will further give credibility to that argument that they should be excluded, give credibility to the italian and french argument? silvia: i think there is already a push to basically safeguard investment in the digital transition and take it out from some constraints of the european fiscal rules. i think it is important to give in mind that the french and italian proposals were written together by president draghi and president macron and others. they clearly want rules that are less tight, but there's also a commitment to appropriately boost potential growth, so i
think the letters on the reform side to be able to make progress on fiscal induration in europe. guy: i am just intrigued to see whether the next generation response to the pandemic is a one-off. if it is a one-off, it was not a hamiltonian moment. if it gets repeated, maybe things start to change in a material way, but i think we need taxation policy to change in a meaningful way as well. we will have to leave it there. we have a lot to digest. i want to take you to brussels. we have a nato briefing taking place right now. the secretary-general is speaking. we will bring you the headlines from that press conference. clearly a firm focus on what is happening on the ukrainian border. this is bloomberg. >> -- for a long time. i think that was a positive sign that this is a step in the right
continent. the ftse 100 is largely being rescued by two stops, vodafone and unilever. both are trading higher. we now understand eight unilever, that stopped being lifted. even it is down 2.5%. the cac 40 is down 3.7%. luxury stocks are down hard. names like airbus are under pressure. industrials are not having a good day, names like volkswagen, with significant exposure into russia. the farther east you go, things get worse. you gotta russia, down 6%. the russian narrative acting as a negative break in europe. that is the picture from an individual market. that is the trajectory in terms of the stoxx 600. it has largely been one way action. we did have a little bit of a
move on the floor when the lows were hit around an hour or so ago. down circa 4% on the euro stoxx 50. on the stoxx 600, down 3.6%. remember, the highest around 390. we have come down hard. not as much as in the united states but we are starting to see significant losses. technology down 5.28%. names like asml under pressure. i mention volkswagen down. construction is down. financial services is down. the sectors are all down over 4%. you can see the list goes on and on. the only performing sector is the grocery sector. the staples. up .6%. that is unilever. vodafone up 4.5%, still in
negative territory. let's talk about individual names. asml down 6.2%. that is having a major impact. vodafone israel heavyweight, helping out -- vodafone is a real heavyweight. the reason for that is talk of consolidation in europe. talk about maybe consolidating the italian assets. maybe u.k. consolidation as well. that is driving that stock to the upside. unilever is also having a major impact today. up 7.31%. on such a big down date that is a huge move. the stock has been incredibly turbulent as a result of the now apparently failed bid for the gsk consumer health unit but also some of the concerns about what is happening with the company and we have concerns of a stake in the business. he has history with this kind of business.
what impact could he have? at the moment a stock up three point -- up 7.31%. alix: let's have more on unilever and bring in an analyst at jefferies who has a buy rating on the stock. what does nelson pal advocate for? >> he has had a recurring playbook. he tends to push for splits of businesses and he tends to push for organizational change and improve performance on the back of that. ultimately unilever is right for that playbook. we have thought for a long time it should split into personal-care assets from its food assets in many in the market view it as a serial underperformer on the top line. it plays well to the pelt playbook. guy: what you think it would be worth where the that to happen if we would see a management
change and a breakup into the component parts? martin: because this stock has been re-rated last year and derated again on this news, the upside to the sum of the parts, which was always marginal in my view has become a lot more interesting. when you look at a stock that can trade in the mid teens, that would be consistent between 45 pounds and 50 pounds a share. the complication of any split is a potential large transaction cost, what are called stranded costs or costs you have to duplicate, potentially a bid to sale. it is not a free lunch. alix: how quickly do you think investors will need to see some action or plan take place to keep the optimism going? martin: i think the optimism
keeps going up its own accord because of peltz's track record. the next critical date for unilever is a q4 presentation on february 10 when not only will it be presenting results to sit down and talk about a major organizational initiative, and then really it will be a case of can they respond to the activist agenda? can they demonstrate they can start to reshape their portfolio , or are we going to see a proposal for a split in the business? guy: the fact that management got so excited about bidding for gsk health care consumer business, which is not a high growth business, what did that tell us about the perception of the current portfolio? martin: it does send a signal that unilever is satisfied with
their growth rate overall. in our view the root cause of the slope growth rate -- of the slow growth rate is that 40% of their business is in food. i think there calculation was that even though the headline growth rate was much better than the unilever growth rate, through their revenue synergies like pushing gsk portfolio through their emerging-market, they can accelerate the growth. that is the implicit objective. david: -- guy: -- alix: do you think m&a or buying growth will be in the future for unilever, and are the valuations right for that? martin: you cannot just be buying growth. you have to be selling. you cannot just keep adding capital in the direction of growth. you have to recycle capital, just as nestle has done.
the markets problem with the gsk's it is a one-way ticket. you are adding before you put your house in order in terms of streamlining portfolios. guy: you think management has to chain for positive things to happen to the stock? do you think this is a management problem that can be resolved with a change of management and a new approach? martin: is an open question. i am not somebody who thinks personalities are always the answer. unilever's problem is not just organizational and cultural, they are structural. that is the key. if he can prove he can reshape the business just as mark schneider did at nestle, he will survive, but he will have to respond smartly to the concerns of the market. guy: they certainly has his work cut out for him.
good to see you again. martin deboo, senior consumer research analyst joining us from jefferies. let's take a look at these markets. let's take a quick look at what has happened early auction process. it has been an ugly session. it has been delivered on fairly decent volume. many sectors down over 4%. a spike lowered during the auction. the ftse dishing down 2.63%. we will carry on the coverage out what is happening in the market in ukraine as well on the radio. we will do that on the cable show. 5:00 p.m. on dab digital radio and 12:00 new york. if you cannot find us on digital radio you can find us on spotify and itunes. alix: the market gets uglier and uglier. those for the day. -- new lows for the day. we did see a boost off of the
ritika: you're looking at a live shot of the principal room. coming up, palombo technology vid columbo joins for an exclusive interview. this is bloomberg. let's check it on the bloomberg first word news. u.s. state department is now warning of what it calls the continued threat of russian military action in ukraine. it has ordered family members at
the embassy in kyiv to leave the country and an advisor says security conditions are unpredictable and get get worse with little notice. the new york times says president biden is considering deploying forces to eastern europe and the baltic. forrest johnson's cabinet may delay in increase in national insurance because of the rising cost of living according to the daily mail. the tax hike is supposed to take effect in april, the same months those energy bills are also due to increase. germany is said to keep current pandemic restrictions in place for the time being. those include limits on access to restaurants, bars, and theaters. germany's health minister says the current coronavirus surge is due to peak the middle of next month and then restrictions could ease. global news 24 hours a day, on air and on quicktake by bloomberg, powered by more than 2700 journalists and analysts in over 120 countries. i am ritika gupta. this is bloomberg. alix: thanks so much.
the selloff picking up steam to the downside. s&p down 3%. the nasdaq also down almost 4% at the moment. joining us is sonali basak. she is going to florida for money managers conference and leaving tonight. it is quite a backdrop. walk us through the backdrop you will be asking these guys. what do they think of a day like today? sonali: for one thing, what is the floor? how much more pain we have to go through. bitcoin hit 29,000 last year and bounced back up. if that is a resistance level, there will be a ton of crypto tomorrow. where do investors put their money? is this now the time to invest in hedge funds? if you look at the money made last year, we reported that hedge fund in credit was up 17%.
they have the fed put. that is what will be what is going way. guy: what do they think the fed put will look like? do they think it really exists? i'm wondering what the conversation will be? credit is behaving, crypto is getting slammed, yet we have a fed meeting on wednesday and the expectation is they come out with their guns blazing. how do we put this all together? a model for the last 10 or 15 years is being thrown out the window at a rapid rate. sonali: good question is a soft landing or a hard landing? which assets get hurt, not that all assets get hurt. the stock is one thing. if you are a credit trader are you comfortable with high yields and what type of high-yield? one thing is an interesting barometer is blackstone. blackstone is reporting earnings later this week.
blackstone is down more than 20% on the year. there private assets are supposed to be fairly stable. our people wondering if they are not going to be able to get loans? are they worried interest rates will suppress the return of anything they invest in in the near term. these are the big questions looming. how much risk can you take on in that new environment? alix: i am wondering are there going to be crypto guys? talk about an asset that has gotten whipsawed. what is it correlated to at the moment? sonali: crypto guys in miami are standing aside hedge fund managers and private asset folks. you have all of these investors having meetings side-by-side and thinking about cryptocurrency as though it is the next new big alternative asset class. we of volatility like this it gets hard to put institutional money into this. if you are waiting on that retail bid, is the retail bid
enough to bring prices higher if you're not getting those institutions to follow it? guy: do think they will be chatting to each other or glued to their bloomberg's trying to figure out what is going on? what is the fiduciary duty of these guys when they're having the kind of volatility we are seeing right now? how many of them are going to be saying my portfolio, i need to look after that? or you think they are beyond that? you think they are not going to worry too much about the short-term volatility. we often hear about the fact they do not invest short-term. does this apply in a situation like this? sonali: it does apply because a lot of these firms got very illiquid very fast. even with blackstone, what we thought was stable and long-term the short-term does matter in the way they put money to work today. they got out for year where they were raising record sums of
money. when they're weedy -- when they are meeting with investors tomorrow cannot still be the case? guy: i hear it will be chilly in florida. sonali: can you imagine 2000 people are meeting in a hotel tomorrow and the next day when the biggest banks have not even brought anybody else back to work until february? guy: i have to say, anecdotally, the u.k. banks are telling people to come back, the trains are filling up. i have to say i do not think it is full yet. plenty of people dragging their heels. alix: is monday. no one comes in on monday. guy: that is the point. they are meant to be coming back but maybe not every day of the week. i will tell you what happens tomorrow. then we will get a better idea. sonali is going to florida. even if it is 50 degrees i'm quite jealous. it will be relatively warm.
everything is about relative today. we are watching what is happening in europe. russia's activities undermine european security, aggression against ukraine will have consequences. what are those consequences going to be? we will try to figure that out. plenty more still to talk about. this is bloomberg. ♪
people are asking. it certainly felt pressure felt when we broke up to a vix of eight points. the market has stabilized at the moment but my sense of goals -- as a lot of investors were waiting for this sort of day when the market took real pressure on a we were nearing the bottom. we are not ready to call it the bottom yet but i think this type of day will help buyers get more reengaged. guy: give us some ideas on how the market is set up and where we are and our people rolling down their puts. i'm curious how the derivatives market is playing this? stuart: the derivative markets have been quite low to start the year. s&p skew is that a 14 month low. we discussed that out of the money protection s&p looks like good value given how much the risks have risen. we have seen hedging flow, a lot more than we have seen people try to take shots to the upside.
the volumes have been lower and we have not scenes you in the s&p. the premium, we've not seen that blowout yet. maybe today we will motivate that but by a large volume has been low and we have not seen that grab for protection the way you might expect. alix: i heard friday the gamma squeeze was blamed for the heavy price action and if you wind up selling a put you have to sell stocks to offset your exposure. while i hear negative gamma squeeze next? stuart: it is easy to blame gamma whenever anything else goes wrong. we also heard about levered etf's. the bottom line is when markets are trading volatile people are looking for reasons to deal with that. friday you had an expiration and people are focused on gamma because of that. by am large there is less volume going through the options this year then you might expect. about 8% to 10% lower than the
end of november post the thanksgiving selloff. we have not gotten that stressed volume and that stressed price action that would drive that. guy: can i take some solace from an inverted vix curve? stuart: we've got a lot of questions on the inverted vix curve. i would say the vix inverts when the market rises in the market rises when the vix sells off. you say by an inverted vix you are basically saying by the depth. if i would to get our statistician out you should say yes we were going to buy it. guy: it means you will not -- alix: it means you will not see volatility sustained. in terms of other asset classes, do you have a sense of how much shorting their is in the treasury market that could been reversed? can you give us perspective on where they sit because those assets to be more sensitive into the fed on wednesday. stuart: it is a great question.
we've gotten some questions on fx volatility. people have been sniffing around to see if exit -- if fx volatility is a way to hedge. credit last week, in the sense those credit funds are total returns, so rates higher could generate negative returns. we see people looking at the credit side. rates got expensive quick. i am not sure there's been as much motivation. people have been trying to understand which assets are most focused on that. guy: thanks for jumping in on such a big day. appreciate your insight. stuart kaiser of ubs. we were talking about unilever a few minutes ago. i headline. unilever said to cut thousands of jobs after peltz builds his stake. unilever one of the
outperformer. intraday cup 7.31%. a big move. alix: a big move. there is what is coming up. the markets and market volatility. we also have earnings soon. ibm is after the bell. spacex dragon crs will reenter earth's atmosphere. we love that because it is cool. guy: and we get to ed ludlow on the show. alix: which is cool. guy: fomc begins tomorrow. what a big event given the backdrop we are seeing in markets. germany's climate index. consumer confidence out of the states. ge is out. it will be another pack today. balance is next. hope you enjoy the show. this is bloomberg. ♪
all i am saying is it is a high-risk operation for him. >> to the world of business -- >> for the fed there is an open question about how to keep its money relevant at the retail level. >> this is "balance of power" with david westin. joe: from bloomberg world headquarters in new york to our tv and radio audiences worldwide welcome to "balance of power." i am joe mathieu in for david westin. stocks are tumbling as president biden deals with challenges abroad and at home. 20 yes are local contributors rick davis and jeanne zaino. thank you for being with us at this moment. we know president biden spent the weekend at camp david. he is now back at the white house