The US$ is generally soft at the end of Monday trade due to speculation that the US-led missile strike on Syria will not escalate beyond the weekend strike. This enabled a move back into stocks, also underpinned by investor focus on company earnings, allowing the DJI and the S+P to close up by around 0.9%, and spurring investors to reduce safe-haven holdings of the dollar. Cable in particular had a good day, in closing in on the 2018/post-Brexit high as traders focus shifted to upcoming UK data that could see a May rate hike, taking the focus away from Britain’s military intervention in Syria.
US stocks closed higher, with the biggest boosts from the technology and healthcare sectors as investors turned their focus to the upcoming earnings season.
The metals were fairly rangebound, while WTI fell by 1.5% as the Middle East tension appeared to subside somewhat.
Tuesday will get off to a busy start with the release of the RBA Minutes of the last meeting and will be closely followed by the February Retail Sales (exp 9.9%), Industrial Production (exp 6.2%), the Q1 GDP (exp 1.5%qq, 6.5%yy) and the NBS Press Conference. The Japanese Capacity Utilisation and Industrial Production for Feb are also due. The focus in Europe will be on the German/EU ZEW Economic Sentiment Survey and the UK Unemployment data (exp Claimant Count Change; +1.1K), while from the US we get the March Building Permits (exp 1.32 mio mm, +11.9%), Housing Starts (exp 1.27 mio mm, -6.7%), Capacity Utilisation (exp 77.9%) and Industrial Production (exp 0.3%). Fed speakers will include Williams, Quarle and Evans. Oil traders should note the API Weekly Crude Oil Stock Inventory while Kiwi traders will watch for the Global Dairy Trade Index around midday, London. Have a good day.
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