The dollar ended on a softer note on Friday but up about 1% over the week, in volatile trade, late in the day. This came about after various Fed speakers, including Janet Yellen, indicated that a March rate hike is very much on the table as long as the economic data retains its current upward path and more or less implied that at least 2 hikes are in line for 2017. In what looks like a “buy-the-rumour/sell-the-fact” move, it now appears that a March rate hike is now pretty much priced in and that we can expect further two way volatility but possible little directional movement as we approach the FOMC meeting on March 15. Stocks finished slightly lower, while commodities made back their early losses as the dollar came under pressure late in the Friday session.
The coming week will be busy, with the focus being on the interest rate decisions to come from the RBA, PBOC and the ECB as well as the monthly Jobs/NFP/Average Hourly Earnings data due on Friday. There will be plenty else besides, particularly from China where we have a data download on most days. Other highlights will include the EU Sentix Investor Confidence Survey (Mon), the EU GDP (Tue) and the UK Consumer Inflation Expectation (Fri). Today will see some early action in the Aud with the release of the TD Inflation, the ANZ Job Ads and the January Retail Sales (exp +0.4%). Have a good week.
US$ sold off against all the major currencies as Yellen/Fischer speeches prove anticlimactic, repeating the claim for a near term rate hike but seeing economic potential at only about 2%, keeping a lid on yields and the dollar. US Factory Orders today
Euro makes gains on the crosses. EU Sentix Investor Confidence Survey today.
Sterling remains under pressure after a weaker-than-expected services PMI on Friday.
Commodity bloc recovers after a bounce in commodities. Australian Retail sales, Job Ads due today.
US STOCKS: Choppy but without any real direction
ASX SPI: Choppy but without any real direction
METALS: Choppy but higher at the end of the day on the back of the weaker dollar.
OIL: WTI was choppy but ended higher, underpinned by the softer dollar.
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|INDICES / COMMODITIES|
|OIL (WTI): 53.18|