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Sluggish Vaccine Pace Risks Rethink of Canada Recovery Forecasts

Arab States to Restore Ties With Qatar as Three-Year Rift Ends

Four Arab states agreed to fully restore ties with Qatar, Saudi Arabia said on Tuesday, ending a more than three-year dispute that divided the major energy-producing region at a time of heightened tensions over Iran.

Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt made the pledge after the kingdom hosted a Gulf Cooperation Council summit of regional leaders.

“A resolution of all areas of differences and a restoration of all diplomatic ties” was agreed by the GCC and Egypt, Saudi Foreign Minister Faisal bin Farhan told a news conference. “It will be a strong and important foundation to the future of the region and its stability.”

Saudi, Qatar Rulers Embrace At Gulf Summit as Borders Reopen

The shift comes two weeks before President Donald Trump, who has led an offensive to weaken Iran, is set to leave office. His successor, Joe Biden, has pledged to engage diplomatically with Tehran if it first returns to the terms of a landmark nuclear deal.

“What we are hearing from the Biden administration shows that they realize the threat” posed by Iran, the Saudi minister said.

— With assistance by Dana Khraiche, and Abeer Abu Omar

OPEC+ approves slight crude output increases

OPEC called at the same time for caution on the part of those active in the sector owing to the coronavirus pandemic

Members of the oil cartel OPEC and their partners agreed Tuesday to raise output slightly in February and March, but only in Russia and Kazakhstan.

In fact, the amount of crude oil the group has voluntarily withdrawn from global markets is to decline from 7.2 million barrels per day to 7.125 mbd in February, and 7.05 mbd in March, the OPEC+ group said in a statement issued at the end of its first ministerial meeting of the year.

It called at the same time for caution on the part of those active in the sector owing to the coronavirus pandemic.

European Economics Preview: Germany Retail Sales, Unemployment Data Due

Retail sales and unemployment figures from Germany are due on Tuesday, headlining a light day for the European economic news.

At 2.00 am ET, Destatis is slated to issue Germany’s retail sales and unemployment data. Sales are forecast to fall 2 percent on month in November, reversing a 2.6 percent rise in October.

Half an hour later, consumer price figures are due from Switzerland. Economists forecast consumer prices to fall 0.7 percent annually in December, the same rate of decrease as seen in November.

At 3.00 am ET, Spain’s unemployment data for December is due.

At 3.55 am ET, the Federal Labor Agency publishes Germany’s unemployment data for December. The jobless rate is seen at 6.1 percent, unchanged from November.

At 4.00 am ET, the European Central Bank is set to release money supply data. Economists expect the M3 money supply to climb 10.6 percent annually, following a 10.5 percent rise in October.

Oregon State-CU Buffs men’s basketball game postponed due to COVID-19 – The Denver Post

The Colorado Buffaloes men’s basketball home game against Oregon State on Saturday has been postponed due to COVID-19 protocols within the Beavers’ program.

OSU’s team activities have been paused due to “testing results and contact tracing protocols,” the school announced Tuesday.

CU (7-3, 1-2 in the Pac-12) is still slated to play Oregon at 9 p.m. Thursday at the CU Events Center.

The two schools are working on rescheduling the game.

European Economics Preview: UK Nationwide House Price Data Due

House prices from the UK and flash consumer prices from Spain are due on Wednesday, headlining a light day for the European economic news.

At 1.00 am ET, IHS Markit releases Russia’s manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ survey data for December.

At 2.00 am ET, UK Nationwide house price data is due. House price inflation is seen rising to 6.7 percent in December from 6.5 percent in November.

At 3.00 am ET, Spain’s INE publishes preliminary consumer and producer prices for December. Economists forecast the harmonized index of consumer prices to drop 0.7 percent annually following a 0.8 percent decrease in November.

In the meantime, Switzerland’s KOF leading index is due. The index reading is seen at 100.5 in December versus 103.5 a month ago.

Sluggish Vaccine Pace Risks Rethink of Canada Recovery Forecasts

Canada’s vaccine rollout has been slower than expected and the laggardly pace could prompt a reassessment of how robust the country’s economic recovery will be, according to Bank of Montreal.

Only 0.32% of the Canadian population had been inoculated as of Monday, making it a “relative underperformer” versus peers such as the U.S. and the U.K., which have both vaccinated 1.4%, Doug Porter, chief economist at the Toronto-based lender, said Tuesday in areport to investors.

Canada has administered about 40,000 doses a week since Covid-19 vaccinations began in December. Authorities will need to raise that to 550,000 doses a week to reach 60% of the population by September. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has said he expects anyone who wants to get vaccinated will be able to by that time.

“Some of the sluggish pace may simply reflect teething pains that might get smoothed in the weeks ahead,” Porter said. “If not, currentrobust expectations for activity later this year may soon see some serious scaling back.”

Most economists, including Porter, expect asharp rebound in economic activity in the second half of this year as vaccinations proceed.