It has been a choppy session today, with the US$ generally higher, particularly against the Jpy, while commodities are lower and stocks have been rangebound and are closing not too far removed from previous levels. The pattern of risk on/risk off continues In the stock markets, the tech sector, the main reason of yesterday’s selloff has stabilised mildly and as a result, Yen and Swiss France are both being sold off as safe haven demand diminishes, while the commodity bloc currencies remain heavy. The US$ has also found demand today through quarter-end flows as traders also shook off fears of a trade was and also due to some position-squaring ahead of the Easter long weekend. The strength of the dollar has hit the metals, with Gold down by around 1.4%, while WTI is also down, by around 1% as data showed U.S. crude supplies resumed their expansion, while domestic producers continued to raise output,
In terms of data, the Q4 US GDP growth was finalised at 2.9% annualised, revised up from 2.5% while the GDP price index was unchanged at 2.3%. Wholesale inventories were up by 1.1% mm in February while the US Trade deficit widened slightly to US$ -75.4 bio in February.
Looking ahead, conditions will become increasingly thin as we approach the holiday. The day starts with the Japan Retail Trade (Feb) and the Australian Private Sector Credit (Feb). Europe will see the Q4 UK GDP (exp 0.4%qq, 1.4%yy), Total Business Investment (exp 0.0%qq, 1.9%yy) and the Consumer Credit (+Gbp 1.4 bio), while from German we get the Preliminary CPI( exp 0.5%mm, 1.7%yy; HICP, exp 0.5 mm, 1.6%%yy). The US will wind things up with the Core Personal Consumption Expenditure – Price Index (exp 1.6% yy), Chicago Purchasing Managers Index, Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index (exp 102) and a speech from the Fed’s Harker. Have a good break.
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|ASX SPI: 5772|