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High Low High Low
EUR/USD 1.1346 1.1308 USD/ZAR 11.6100 11.5570
GBP/USD 1.5251 1.5211 GBP/ZAR 17.70 17.60
EUR/GBP 0.7447 0.7423 USD/RUB 66.00 64.75
USD/JPY 118.79 118.39 USD/NGN 196.3 194.0
GBP/CHF 1.4100 1.4035 S&P 500 2052 2044
USD/ILS 3.8980 3.8690 Oil (Brent) 59.42 58.12

William Shakespeare in his novel Julius Caesar writes: “Men at some time are masters of their fates. The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, but in ourselves, that we are underlings.” And most notably “Beware the ides of March.”  Greece’s PM continues to make waves, declaring that he would not request an extension to the government’s bailout program, stating that it had failed. The existing bailout is due to expire on Feb. 28 and, without an extension, could result in Greece’s exit from the EU. So far it’s too early to say whether Greece is just playing a calculated game of chess with EU Finance Leaders (meeting currently in Turkey), or whether it is willing to become a financial island from the rest of Europe. In other words is GREXIT gathering momentum and can the impossible happen? I have said over and over that GREXIT is not an option. That everything that can be done to maintain the EU, must be done. The most heartbreaking thing is now that the ECB has thrown the proverbial book at EU growth, the Greeks want to start a fight. Do they honestly think they can go it alone? “No man is an Island”, and as I said yesterday Mr. Tsipras is trying to make good on his campaign promise of eliminating the current austerity plan, by proposing an elimination of a portion of the debt-reduction measures the country had agreed to as a condition of international aid. However, Germany has already indicated she has no intention of easing up on the requirements of the bailout terms. Chess is in a game of patience, where the champion waits before going in for the kill. Mr Tsipras if you think for one moment you are Magnus Carlsen then you are sadly mistaken. The EU will not cave in, the Germans (especially) will not cave in, and if Greece wants to go it alone then so be it. We all know who the ultimate loser will be in this game of chess. Mr Tsipras needs to lighten up on his rhetoric (keep his party happy) but understand that for Greece’s sake, it is better to be part of the (EU) community rather than a pariah state.

Chinese CPI dropped below 1% for the first time in 5 years (0.80%), adding to China’s deflationary woes, subdued money growth, property bubble and growth worries. No doubt the world’s second largest economy is starting to feel the pinch. And there we were all thinking that we were past and over the financial crisis that began in 2007 (not 2008 as most commentators would argue). It is now plain to see that the world’s largest economy, the mighty USA, took the right decisions early on to get their economy cooking. That’s why the UK MUST VOTE Conservatives to continue on the present road to growth and recovery. I know I have said this months ago, and recently by industry giants, a LABOUR Government will spell DISASTER FOR THE UK ECONOMY and see the GBP collapse, not to mention the flight of aforementioned industry giants to fairer pastures. You might not support the Conservatives and the BOE is independent, but the changes and the spending mess Labour will bring with it makes GREXIT another atomic bomb prospect. Trust me when I say this, Labour will kill off the UK’s amazing growth of the past 2 years.

Nigeria postpones elections due to terrorist threats. Amazing story really. The giants of Africa, the largest economy in Africa. Suffice to say USDNGN is getting truly whip lashed rising up to 196.30 lows. Locals are changing NGN for USD OVER 200 and even that is “cheap”. More must be done to eradicate the Boko threat once and for all. Just like South Africa in the mid 80’s and the war with MPLA/SWAPO, the SADF piled on the pressure to stamp out this threat. The point I am trying to make is Nigeria is being hammered by lower oil prices and Boko stretching the Govt. and making governing quite testing. I know it is easier said than done, but something needs to change and order needs to be restored. Simple.


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