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Greetings,

We begin with China where exports declined by most since 2009. A portion of this was due to the New Year's holiday, but the fact that the decline was double the projected figure suggests that export weakness persists.
Some are suggesting that given the recent weakening of the yuan, we may see a rebound shortly. Perhaps. 
Source: @Callum_Thomas
Here are several other developments in China.

1. Mainland China imports from Hong Kong jump 88%, which seems highly implausible. A more likely explanation is more fake/bloated receipts - a way to avoid capital controls and take money out of the country.
Source: @TomOrlik
2. China's FX reserves continue to declines but the rate of decline seems to have slowed.
Source: ‏@RBS_Economics
3. China's freight price indices are declining, which reflects weakening trade activity. 
Source: @Callum_Thomas
4. Beijing is getting ready to crack down on property buyers using loans to finance their down payments. Remember "second mortgages" in the US? China's first-tier property prices have jumped recently.
Source: @SoberLook, Bloomberg
Markets are betting that Beijing will continue to supply more stimulus - both fiscal and monetary. As a result, iron ore went "vertical". 
Source: barchart
Some are questioning the sustainability of this rally, as China's steel output has not kept up with its iron ore imports. Bloated iron ore inventories should therefore pressure prices.
Source: WSJ
Speaking of steel, here is the steel rebar futures contract in Shanghai.
Source: barchart
Most other commodity markets continued to rally as well - some of this also on the back of new China stimulus expectations. It's not clear however how much stimulus is actually coming and whether it will be enough to support the commodity rebound.

1. Here is the (broad) CRB Commodity Index.
Source: Investing.com
2. Brent crude broke through $40/bbl, ignoring an uptick in Iran's crude production (second chart below).
Source: @SoberLook
By the way, apparently investors expect a fairly steep price appreciation in crude oil over the next couple of years. Some of these expectations seem to be above the forward curve.
Source: ‏@JKempEnergy, @merrillmatter
3. Lumber futures have rallied sharply. This is also China stimulus-related as the nation imports quite a bit of lumber. Will stimulus reverse the recent import declines (second chart below)?
Source: barchart
4. Last, we have the orange juice futures contract bucking the trend.
Source: barchart
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The commodity rally has pushed the Russian stock market close to record levels (in rubles of course).
Chilean imports fall to 2010 levels as the weak peso makes foreign goods unaffordable. The situation is similar in several other Latin American nations.
Taiwan's Inflation hit a 3-year high in February. This was attributed to "rise to crop and fish farm damage caused by a cold wave earlier this year, causing higher prices for fruit, vegetables and fish" (Focus Taiwan).
Source: The Central News Agency (Focus Taiwan News Channel);  "Vegetable prices jump 80.7 percent after cold snap in January"
Turning to Japan, the latest GDP decline was not as bad as expected. Tokyo is once again considering delaying the next consumption tax hike (to 10%). The nation's consumer spending never recovered from the damage the last tax hike had caused.

Here is Japan's 40-year bond yield. Will the 10-year paper in Japan yield more or less than 82 basis points in 30 years?
In the UK, the overnight rate forward curve has flattened sharply over the past month - pushing out the next BoE rate hike.
Source: BoE
By the way, Brexit odds in the betting markets remain relatively low.
Source:  @PredictWise
Negative rates make it difficult for central banks to hold euros as a reserve currency - some are not permitted buy bonds with negative yields. The euro balances at central banks may therefore continue to decline as a reserve currency. This of course works well for the ECB as it tries to weaken the euro further.
Source: @Schuldensuehner

Based on the ECB's own rule, the larger the rate cut the more negative-yielding bonds the Eurosystem can buy as part of QE (bond yields have to be above the deposit rate at purchase).
Source: @SoberLook, Bloomberg
Back in the United States consumer credit growth came in weaker than expected. Here are some trends from that report.

1. Government-owned student loans as a percent of total consumer credit are now over 27%.
2. We've seen massive growth in US auto debt over the past 5 years, but is it now slowing? 
3. Here is the average maturity of new US auto debt at finance firms. Is the super-easy credit in auto finance about to end?
4. After the recession, credit unions fell in love with auto debt. Once again, this does not look sustainable.
5. Speaking of consumer credit, here is the distribution by type and age. 
Source: ‏@sobata416
Turning to other US economic developments, ...

1. US restaurant index takes a sharp dive. What does this say about discretionary spending and consumer sentiment?
Source: ‏ ‏@historysquared
2. Here is a note from Deutsche Bank about the financial conditions index and the Fed being in a bind with respect to raising rates.
Source: Deutsche Bank
3. Fed's labor market conditions index seems to be inconsistent with the payrolls report on Friday. This index is subject to many revisions, but it's a data point nevertheless.
Finally, we have a few developments in US fixed income and equity markets.

1. How about this HY bond fund inflow? 
Source: @MorningstarInc
2. Energy CDS spreads seem to be tightening.
Source: @fastFT
3. Dealer inventories of longer-dated treasuries hit a record. Apparently many of these positions are hedged in the futures market. 
Source: @SoberLook, NY Fed
4. Increased risk appetite has resulted in energy and small cap shares outperforming sharply over the past few days.
Source: Ycharts.com
Source: Ycharts.com
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Turning to Food for Thought, we have 5 items this morning:

1. This is a bit dated but interesting nevertheless. Breakdown of global venture capital deployed (by country).
Source: ‏@wef 
2. What are the betting markets telling us about the next US Supreme Court nomination?
Source: @PredictWise
3. Speaking of betting markets, the probability of Marco Rubio's GOP nomination has collapsed. 
Source: ‏ @pivit
4. Blockchain tech spending is expected to rise sharply. Is it going to fundamentally change global banking?
Source:  @wef
 
5. Projected legal marijuana sales.
Source: ArcView Market Research
Thanks to Josh, @NickatFP, @MattGarrett3, Jake Badalamenti, and Ycharts.com for helping with research for the Daily Shot.

We would also like to thank the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis for the incredible job they have done providing data and graphics to the public. Here is credit and legal notice related to FRED charts: FRED® Graphs ©Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis. All rights reserved. All FRED® Graphs appear courtesy of Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis. http://research.stlouisfed.org/fred2/
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