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- - Covid cases continue to gradually decrease with the 7D SMA of daily new cases dropping below 1,800 (and down from 12,300 from its early March highs). Therefore, Czech government opens all primary schools with rotating classes, as well as museums and galleries as of May 10. Other cultural events like theater performances with live audiences may be allowed as of May 24 depending developments (BBG).
- Czech opposition leaders failed to trigger new election before the summer after Czech Pirate Party announced on Thursday that it was not able to mobilize enough supporters according to Bloomberg. The current minority government run by PM Andrej Babiš is currently under pressure following the diplomatic spat between Prague and Moscow and criticism over the management of the pandemic after nearly 29,500 Covid deaths were reported since the beginning. The elections will therefore be held on October 8/9 as planned.
- As expected, the CNB decided to keep its benchmark rate steady at 0.25% as policymakers aim to maintain financial conditions as loose as possible. Debates over rate hikes will likely start in August, implying that the CNB will be one the first central banks to start raising rates in 2021 in Western/Central/Eastern Europe (Norway on the list in DM).
- CNB Governor Rusnok mentioned in a conference that the central bank sees 'new inflation pressures', but still no urgency to sharply increase Czech rates. Rusnok also mentioned that CNB is 'fully 'confident' of at least one rate hike this year.
- Yesterday, March retail sales rose 13% YoY, less than the 15.8% expected and up from -4.9% the previous month.
- This morning, we saw that economic data showed that Czech industrial production rose 18.2% YoY in March (vs. 12.1% exp.), mostly driven by the low base effect.