GBP/USD – British pound pushes above 1.32 as wage growth rises

GBP/USD has gained ground in the Tuesday session. In the North American session, the pair is trading at 1.3198, up 0.34% on the day. On the release front, the focus was on British job numbers. Wage growth climbed 2.7%, edging above the estimate of 2.6%. The unemployment rate remained unchanged at 4.0%, matching the estimate. However, unemployment claims jumped to 18.5 thousand, well above the estimate of 4.5 thousand. In the U.S, there are no major events on the schedule. JOLTS Job Openings is expected to dip to 6.90 million. The markets are still waiting for the U.S Treasury to release its semi-annual currency report, which may occur later on Tuesday. On Wednesday, the U.K releases a host of inflation indicators, led by CPI. The U.S will release Building Permits and Housing Starts, and the Federal Reserve will publish its minutes from the September policy meeting.

EU leaders are meeting in Brussels, and officials had hoped that the summit would include a draft statement on Brexit, but this plan has been shelved due to a deadlock over the Irish border. This is certainly not good news for Prime Minister May, who remains embattled as the Brexit negotiations remain painfully deadlocked. The EU is insisting that it will not sign a withdrawal agreement with Britain, unless there is a backstop which allows Northern Ireland to remain in a customs union with the EU after Brexit. However, the British government is unlikely to agree to such a move, since it would require regulatory barriers within the United Kingdom. With plans for a Brexit statement at Wednesday’s meeting on hold, a Brexit statement with have to wait until EU leaders meet in November or even December, which is extremely close to the Brexit deadline in March 2019.

U.S indicators were a mixed bag on Monday, as retail sales were soft but manufacturing data was solid. Retail Sales posted a meager gain of 0.1%, shy of the estimate of 0.4%. Core Retail Sales surprised with a decline of 0.1%, compared to an estimate of 0.4%. This marked the first decline since June 2017. There was better news from the manufacturing front, as Empire State Manufacturing Index strengthened to 21.1, above the estimate of 20.4 points.

Asia Market update : A time out

Risk remains on the back foot

The buck cannot find a bid

GBP/USD Fundamentals

Tuesday (October 16)

  • 4:30 British Average Earnings Index. Estimate 2.6%. Actual 2.7%
  • 4:30 British Unemployment Rate. Estimate 4.0%. Actual 4.0%
  • 4:30 British Claimant Count Change. Estimate 4.5K. Actual 18.5K
  • 9:15 BoE Deputy Governor Jon Cunliffe Speaks
  • 9:15 US Capacity Utilization Rate. Estimate 78.2%
  • 9:15 US Industrial Production. Estimate 0.2%
  • 10:00 US JOLTS Job Openings. Estimate 6.90M
  • 10:00 US NAHB Housing Market Index. Estimate 68
  • 16:00 US TIC Long-Term Purchases. Estimate 50.3B
  • 16:15 US FOMC Member Mary Daly Speaks
  • Tentative – US Treasury Currency Report

Wednesday (October 17)

  • 4:30 British CPI. Estimate 2.6%
  • 8:30 US Building Permits. Estimate 1.28M
  • 8:30 US Housing Starts. Estimate 1.21M
  • 10:30 US Crude Oil Inventories
  • 12:10 US FOMC Member Lael Brainard Speaks
  • 14:00 US FOMC Meeting Minutes

*Key events are in bold

GBP/USD for Tuesday, October 16, 2018

GBP/USD October 16 at 12:20 DST

Open: 1.3153 High: 1.3153 Low: 1.3237 Close: 1.3198

GBP/USD Technical

S1 S2 S1 R1 R2 R3
1.2852 1.2966 1.3173 1.3301 1.3447 1.3527

GBP/USD ticked lower in the Asian session The pair posted gains in European trade. GBP/USD has posted small losses in North American trade

  • 1.3173 is providing support
  • 1.3301 is the next resistance line
  • Current range: 1.3173 to 1.3301

Further levels in both directions:

  • Below: 1.3173, 1.2966, 1.2852 and 1.2723
  • Above: 1.3301, 1.3447 and 1.3527

This article is for general information purposes only. It is not investment advice or a solution to buy or sell securities. Opinions are the authors; not necessarily that of OANDA Corporation or any of its affiliates, subsidiaries, officers or directors. Leveraged trading is high risk and not suitable for all. You could lose all of your deposited funds.

Live FX Market Analysis – 16 October 2018 (Video)

It’s been another turbulent week in FX markets with last week’s sell-off suitably spooking investors, Saudi Arabia causing a stir following allegations of murder at its embassy in Turkey, Brexit talks stalling and Italy risking the wrath of the European Commission after submitting its budget. Senior Market Analyst Craig Erlam discusses all of these and more in this week’s webinar.

Craig also gives his live analysis on EURUSD (16:37), GBPUSD (18:09), EURGBP (20:05), AUDUSD (21:56), USDCAD (24:25), GBPCAD (29:37), NZDUSD (30:14), USDJPY (31:05), GBPJPY (31:50) and EURJPY (32:40).

Markets stable for now but risks pile up

Saudi in the spotlight as lies start to unravel

Investors may not be feeling particularly comfortable yet but we are seeing some welcome stability in the markets on Tuesday, with Europe posting small gains following a mixed session in Asia overnight. US futures are also pointing a little higher which will provide some comfort following a number of rather explosive sessions.

As ever, politics is driving everything right now and while a trade spat between the US and China has gone quiet, it’s been Saudi Arabia in the spotlight following the disappearance and alleged murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi. Brexit is never far from the headlines as the UK and EU continue efforts to resolving the Northern Ireland backstop – without much success – while Italy offers another headache from within after it submitted its first populist budget that put it on a collision course with Brussels as it breaks its fiscal rules.

The buck cannot find a bid

Oil eases as Trump takes heat out of situation

Oil prices have continued to edge lower on Tuesday, as Trump appeared to take some of the heat out of the Saudi situation following a phone call with King Salman. Trump appeared reassured by the conversation after the King denied any knowledge of what happened, which suggests he’ll be in no rush to impose sanctions or other measures against the country.

WTI and Brent Crude Daily Charts

OANDA fxTrade Advanced Charting Platform

While it later emerged that Saudi Arabia was willing to admit that Khashoggi was unintentionally killed during an interrogation, having previously claimed he left via the back door, traders don’t appear to believe that this will influence Trump’s response to the situation with the American President clearly very reluctant to enter into a tit-for-tat with a key middle eastern ally.

Saudi Arabia has a number of options at its disposal for responding to US sanctions, including causing severe disruption in the oil market if it suddenly reduced output in what is already a tight market. Prices have already risen to levels not seen in four years and if the Saudi’s decide to use this as a weapon, it could cause prices to soar which would be very damaging for the global economy. There is a hope that the self-harming nature of such a move would deter such action.

Commodities Weekly: Gold at 2-1/2 month high as safe haven status reborn

UK wage growth accelerates in August

The UK labour market data this morning provided some positive news among the constant flow of tedious rhetoric regarding to the stalled Brexit negotiations. Despite the low growth environment the country finds itself in due to the uncertainty around the negotiations, unemployment remained at a 43-year low in August while wage growth exceeded expectations, rising 2.7% or 3.1% when bonuses are stripped out.

UK Real Wage Growth

Source – Thomson Reuters Eikon

Real wage growth has been among the greatest casualties so far of the referendum result, having fallen in large part due to the currency impact on inflation. While we have edged back into positive territory this year, the increases are tiny which makes even a small beat today something to celebrate. The pound rallied following the data, breaking 1.32 against the dollar before paring gains.

GBPUSD Daily Chart

Economic Calendar

For a look at all of today’s economic events, check out our economic calendar.

The buck cannot find a bid

Tuesday October 16: Five things the markets are talking about

The ‘big’ dollar came under pressure yesterday and is finding it difficult to gain much traction this morning as investors taking profit on U.S assets outweighs concerns about Italy, Brexit and a Sino-U.S trade war. Furthermore, twin U.S deficits and prospects of a halt in Fed’s rate hike cycle are also weighing on the dollar.

Elsewhere, it has been mixed picture across regional stock markets overnight as investors await the next wave of corporate earnings and further developments across the aforementioned geopolitical issues.

Note: Any hint of a slowdown or stronger growth could affect the pace of Fed’s rate hikes.

Oil prices continue to fluctuate within striking distance of recent highs amid tensions between Saudi Arabia and the U.S over the disappearance of Jamal Khashoggi, a prominent journalist with U.S citizenship, while the precious ‘yellow’ metal holds its gains.

On tap: FOMC minutes are due Wednesday (02:00 pm EDT), with investors focused on projections for further interest rate rises.

1. Stocks mixed results

In Japan, the Nikkei rebounded overnight, supported by short covering in index heavyweights (automakers and SoftBank), but retailers came under pressure on worries about domestic personal consumption and slowing demand from China. The Nikkei share average closed +1.3% higher, after tumbling -1.8% yesterday. The broader Topix rallied +0.7%.

Down-under, Aussie shares rebounded overnight, as mining and financials bounced back from Monday’s -1% drop and six-month low, but rising tensions between Saudi Arabia and the West and weaker PPI data in China capped broader market gains. The S&P/ASX 200 index rose +0.6%. In S. Korea, the Kospi stock index closed flat on Tuesday as global uncertainties capped gains during the day.

In China, stocks ended lower overnight, after data showed factory-gate inflation had cooled for a third consecutive month in September amid lean domestic demand. The blue-chip CSI300 index ended -0.8% weaker, while the Shanghai Composite Index also closed -0.8% lower. In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng was up +0.1%.

Note: Chinese inflation was boosted by food while prices were mostly subdued elsewhere. China Sept CPI y/y came in as expected at +2.5% vs. +2.5%e (a seven-month high): PPI y/y was +3.6% vs. +3.5%e.

In Europe, regional bourses trade mostly higher across the board with the Italian FTSE MIB outperforming following the submission of its draft budget to the E.C, while the U.K’s FTSE underperforms on Brexit uncertainty.

U.S stocks are set to open in the ‘black’ (+0.3%).

Indices: Stoxx600 +0.4% at 361, FTSE -0.2% at 7012, DAX +0.2% at 11638, CAC-40 +0.1% at 5099, IBEX-35 +0.9% at 9004, FTSE MIB +1.1% at 19500, SMI +0.3% at 8678, S&P 500 Futures +0.3%

2. Oil dips on expectations of higher U.S stocks, gold unchanged

Oil prices have eased a tad amid expectations of an increase in U.S crude inventories, but signs of a fall in Iranian oil exports for October are limiting losses.

Brent crude for December delivery has fallen -6c, or -0.07%, to +$80.72 per barrel, while U.S West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude for November delivery is down -14c at +$71.64 a barrel.

U.S crude stockpiles are forecasted to have risen last week for the fourth consecutive week, by about +1.1M barrels, ahead of reports from the API (data is due at 4:30 pm today) and the U.S DoE’s EIA (will be released at 10:30 am EDT tomorrow).

In the first two weeks of October, Iran has exported +1.33M bpd of crude to countries including India, China and Turkey. That is down from +1.6M bpd during the same period in September.

Note: October exports are a sharp drop from the +2.5M bpd in April before President Trump withdrew from a multilateral nuclear deal with Iran. In May Trump ordered the re-imposition of economic sanctions on the country. The sanctions will come into force on Nov. 4.

Also supporting prices is today’s comments from OPEC’s Secretary General Barkindo who said, “global spare oil capacity was shrinking,” adding “producers and companies should increase their production capacities and invest more to meet current demand.”

Ahead of the U.S open, gold prices are holding steady near yesterday’s three-month high as a number of risk-averse investors seek refuge in the metal amid rising political tensions and economic uncertainty.

Spot gold was little changed at +$1,226.71 an ounce – it touched +$1,233.26 yesterday, its highest print since mid July, as global equities slid on rising tensions between the Saudi’s and the West. U.S gold futures are flat at +$1,230.40 an ounce.

3. German Bund yields edge higher

A cautious, risk-on mood currently prevails in eurozone sovereign bond markets so far this morning, with yields of German Bunds and of other core eurozone bonds up, and Italian bond yields down.

This would suggest that market risk sentiment may be improving following last week’s sudden correction, but the balance remains a tad precarious in the current political environment. German 10-year Bund yield has backed up +1.4 bps to +0.51%.

Note: The +0.50% level in Bund yields remains pivotal and with more debt product coming to market today (Germany offers +€4B in the September 2020-dated Schatz) should be able to back up sovereign yields a tad more.

Elsewhere, the yield on 10-year Treasuries has backed up +1 bps to +3.17%, the highest in a week. In the U.K, the 10-year Gilt yield has decreased -1 bps to +1.603%, the lowest in almost two-weeks, while in Italy, the 10-year BTP yield has declined -2 bps to +3.522%.

4. G7 currency pairs are little changed

Major currencies (€, £, ¥ and C$) are relatively unchanged ahead of the U.S open.

Dealers and investors have little technical or fundamental data to work with at current levels. In fact, the market is looking for guidance, which may come in the shape of the U.S Treasury forex report, which is likely to be released this week and where the U.S could name China a currency manipulator.

If the U.S were to name China a currency manipulator it would further pressure China on trade and add to the Sino-U.S trade tensions.

EUR/USD is flat at €1.1579 and other major currency pairs are not moving by much either. GBP/USD is up slightly at £1.3163 as leaders struck a conciliatory tone a day after Brexit negotiations broke down and USD/JPY is up +0.3% at ¥112.07

Elsewhere, the performance of several petro-forex (NOK, CAD, RUB) has been held back due to various unique factors that have not translated into a growth boost for these currencies. The ruble has been driven by U.S sanctions, and the Canadian dollar has been held back by NAFTA re-negotiations.

TRY (-0.20% at $5.7865) has retreated after seven days of gains after the country released U.S pastor Andrew Brunson on Friday.

5. U.K wage growth fastest in a decade

U.K data this morning showed that wage growth quickened over the summer at the fastest pace in almost a decade, adding to signs of inflationary pressure.

The ONS said that average weekly earnings in Britain, ex-bonuses, grew +3.1% in the three-months through August.

The figures will likely reinforce market expectations that the BoE remains on course tighten monetary policy over the next 24-months to keep overall price-growth in check, assuming the U.K.’s exit from the E.U goes well.

Other data showed that U.K unemployment in the three-months through August was unchanged on the previous three-months at +4%, while the number of people in work, +32.4M, remained close to its record high.

Note: The BoE hiked interest rate in August and signalled that they expect to do so again two or more times over the next couple of years to bring inflation back to their +2% annual goal.

A weaker pound since the Brexit referendum has to push up the price of imports, squeezing U.K citizens’ purchasing power.

Forex heatmap

Oil Lower on Saudi Diplomacy and Supply Concerns

Oil is lower on Monday after an eventful weekend that has the energy markets full of uncertainty. After public condemnation on the investigation of a missing journalist Saudi Arabia has launched a threat of retaliation using their oil supply. Tempers flared within the Kingdom and some comments have been walked back by more official sources. The Energy Minister of Saudi Arabia said that the nation will be a responsible actor and keep oil markets stable.

Crude prices have been supported by supply concerns as the Iran sanctions will come into effect in November, but there has already been cuts from buyers that want to avoid incurring the wrath of the US. A soft dollar has limited crude price losses on Monday as a miss on US retail sales with a diplomatic exchange of harsh words between the US and Saudi Arabia over the missing reporter.


West Texas Intermediate graph

Crude prices are being kept at current levels due to estimates on supply even as Saudi Arabia has put on the table the threat of weaponizing oil prices.

While a sequel to the oil embargo of the 70’s is a long shot, there is also the need to remember that a lot has changed since then and Saudi Arabia might not hold a big a stick as it once did.

While the Saudi authorities have walked back, or clarified some of the comments made over the weekend, the threat of reducing their oil supply by applying sanctions to their critics remains. The oil embargo in 1973-74 was the result of a diplomatic dispute against the US.

Their position as the de facto leaders of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) is not as solid as it once was. Internal struggles with Iran and some members feeling ignored (Venezuela, Nigeria, etc) and the advance of shale technology has also reduced the vulnerability of US demand. US production has reached records while foreign have fluctuated.


West Texas Intermediate graph

The US still imports around 28 percent of its foreign oil form Saudi Arabia, but even the kingdom is trying to diversify away from relying on energy exports. An escalation of this conflict will cripple those plans as it would once again concentrate all their power on a single asset.

Sanctions against the US would push oil prices beyond $100. Those levels were already on the table as Iran sanctions are set to begin in November. The irony could be that a Saudi offensive could be the factor that makes the US rethink its sanctions against Iran, putting the OPEC on a crossroads. Demand has not surged at the same rate as prices, so there is not a lot of room above $100 in the short term, with the political decisions guiding markets rather than supply and demand.

Saudi 5-year CDS jump to 11-month high

The cost of insuring exposure to Saudi Arabia’s sovereign debt jumped to the highest level in 11 months on Monday after the kingdom faced increasing international pressure over missing journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Saudi Arabia’s 5-year credit default swaps rose to 100 basis points after closing at 89 basis points on Friday, according to data from IHS Markit.

Reuters

U.S retail sales increase less than expected in September

U.S. retail sales barely rose in September as a rebound in motor vehicle purchases was offset by the biggest drop in spending at restaurants and bars in nearly two years.

The Commerce Department said on Monday retail sales edged up 0.1 percent last month after a similar gain in August. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast retail sales increasing 0.6 percent in September.

Retail sales in September rose 4.7 percent from a year ago.

Excluding automobiles, gasoline, building materials and food services, retail sales jumped 0.5 percent last month. These so-called core retail sales correspond most closely with the consumer spending component of gross domestic product.

Data for August was revised down to show core retail sales were unchanged instead of the previously reported 0.1 percent gain. Consumer spending is being driven by a robust labor market, with the unemployment rate near a 49-year low of 3.7 percent. Tight labor market conditions are gradually pushing up wage growth.

The solid core retail sales increase in September pointed to strong consumer spending that should offset anticipated drags on economic growth from a widening trade deficit and persistent weakness in the housing market. Growth estimates for the third quarter are above a 3.0 percent annualized rate. The economy grew at a 4.2 percent pace in the second quarter.

Last month, auto sales surged 0.8 percent after declining 0.5 percent in August. Receipts at service stations fell 0.8 percent, likely reflecting a moderation in gasoline prices.

Sales at clothing stores rebounded 0.5 percent after tumbling 2.8 percent in August. Online and mail-order sales soared 1.1 percent in September after rising 0.5 percent in the prior month.

Receipts at furniture stores increased 1.1 percent. But Americans cut back on spending at restaurants and bars, with sales dropping 1.8 percent. That was the biggest decline since December 2016.

While the Commerce Department said it was impossible to determine the impact of Hurricane Florence on the data, disruptions caused by the storm could have hurt sales at restaurants and bars last month.

Sales at building material stores nudged up 0.1 percent in September. Spending at hobby, musical instrument and book stores increased 0.7 percent last month.

Reuters

Geopolitical risks and yields dominate proceedings

Monday October 15: Five things the markets are talking about

Following a weekend of warnings on global economic fragility from G10 finance leaders at an IMF meeting in Bali, has global equities starting this new week on the back foot, with regional bourses in Asia and Europe seeing red, while U.S equity futures are pointing to deep declines.

Sovereign yields are lower in this cautious climate, while yen has pushed higher along with gold. Crude oil has advanced as tensions rise between the U.S and Saudi Arabia over a missing journalist.

Politics and data are never a good mix and this week is awash with both.

Italy is to submit its contentious budget to the E.C. Already; the proposed budget has potentially broken specific thresholds, which would require a lot of debating from both parties. Expect Italian BTP yields again to come under pressure, backing up towards the psychological +4%.

The E.U meets on Wednesday and will get an update on the status of negotiations with the U.K’s Brexit. Expect the Irish border to be the ‘hot topic du jour. If there is insufficient progress, the possibility of a special summit next month to finalize an agreement looks dead in the water. Dealers expect the pound to remain volatile in the short-term.

The U.S Treasury report about the international economy and the FX market is to be released Tuesday. To neutral observers, China does not meet the threshold of “manipulation.” However, Trumps interpretation may be very different.

On the data front, the U.S releases retail sales this morning (08:30 am EDT) and FOMC minutes on Wednesday.

Across the pond, the U.K presents its labour report tomorrow, (Oct 16) inflation Wednesday (Oct 17) and retail sales Thursday (Oct 18).

In Canada, Friday’s upcoming data includes retail sales, and CPI – neither of the reports are expected to dissuade the market of pricing in a +25 bps rate hike at next weeks Bank of Canada (BoC) monetary policy decision.

1. Equities see red

In Japan overnight, the Nikkei closed at a two month low as automakers and other manufacturers were hit by news that the Trump administration would seek a provision about currency manipulation in future trade deals. The Nikkei share average ended down -1.8%, the weakest closing point since mid-Aug, while the broader Topix dropped -1.6%, the lowest close in seven-months.

Down-under, the ASX 200 fell to a six-month low overnight, led by the banking sectors growing concerns about the hit to earnings from an inquiry into misconduct. The S&P/ASX 200 index fell -1%. In S. Korea, the Kospi stock index fell -0.77% as institutions cut their exposure to riskier assets. The country’s biggest automaker Hyundai Motor slipped -1.7%, marking its lowest trading level in eight-years.

In China and Hong Kong, stock markets again slipped overnight following last week’s deepest dive in eight-months, as investors await the latest twist in the Sino-U.S trade dispute. The Shanghai Composite index closed lower by -1.5%, while in Hong Kong the Hang Seng closed -1.4% lower.

In Europe, regional bourses trade lower across the board, tracking U.S futures and Asian indices lower. The FTSE and sterling (£1.3140) trade a tad lower after the E.U and U.K paused Brexit talks until after this week’s mini-summit.

U.S stocks are set to open deep in the ‘red’ (-0.8%).

Indices: Stoxx600 -0.6% at 356.8, FTSE -0.3% at 6976, DAX -0.4% at 11474, CAC-40 -0.6% at 5066, IBEX-35 -0.3% at 8876, FTSE MIB -0.2% at 19225, SMI % at -0.8%, S&P 500 Futures -0.8%

2. Oil prices rise on Saudi tensions, gold higher

Oil prices remain bid this Monday morning as tension over the disappearance of a Washington post journalist and Saudi critic, Jamal Khashoggi, fuelled supply worries, although concerns over the long-term demand outlook dragged on sentiment.

Brent crude oil jumped +$1.49 a barrel to a high of +$81.92 before easing to +$81.13, up +70c. U.S crude (WTI) was last up +40c at +$71.74.

Saudi Arabia has been under pressure since Khashoggi, a U.S. resident, disappeared on Oct. 2 after visiting the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.

President Trump has threatened “severe punishment” if it is found that the journalist was killed in the consulate.

On Sunday, the Saudi’s said it would retaliate to any action taken against them over the Khashoggi case. The market is tentatively concerned that the Saudis may use oil as a tool for retaliation.

Despite prices starting the week better bid, there are still lower that last week’s high print.

Also limiting price gains is a report from the IEF last Friday stating that the market looked “adequately supplied for now” and cut its forecasts for world oil demand growth this year and next.

Ahead of the U.S open, gold prices have jumped +1% to hit a three-month high as global stocks resumed their fall and investors wrestled with the impact of the ongoing Sino-U.S. trade war and higher U.S interest rates. Spot gold is up +0.9% at +$1,228.24 an ounce, while U.S gold futures are up +0.8% at +$1,231.80 an ounce.

3. Italian and Portugal yields fall

Portuguese and Italian government bond yields have fallen this morning, with prices outperforming euro zone peers after ratings agency Moody’s upgraded Portugal’s credit rating back to investment grade.

Portugal’s 10-year bond yield fell -4 bps to +2.01% after Moody’s lifted its credit rating to Baa3 on Friday.

The positive periphery sentiment from Portugal has spilled over into Italy’s battered bond market. Italian 10-year BTP yields are down -4.5 bps to +3.53%.

Note: Expect Italian yields to trade rather volatile this week as Italy presents its budget to the E.C.

Elsewhere, the yield on U.S 10’s fell -1 bps to +3.15%. In Germany, the 10-year Bund yield has dipped -1 bps to +0.49%, the lowest in more than a week. In the U.K, the 10-year Gilt yield has eased -2 bps to +1.614%, the lowest in more than a week.

4. Dollar’s safe haven flows ease

Risk aversion flows initially provided a bid for the traditional safe-haven currencies of JPY (¥111.75) and ‘big’ USD, however, market sentiment has eased a tad ahead of the U.S open.

GBP (£1.3147) opened below the psychological £1.31 handle on concerns that a Brexit agreement might be slipping away after the U.K and E.U negotiators were said to have called ‘a pause’ in their Brexit talks and would now wait for the outcome of a summit mid-week (Wed) before any resumption.

TRY ($5.8208) is firmer by over +1% outright for its seventh session gain on optimism that relations between Turkey and U.S would improve following the release of U.S Pastor Brunson.

Bitcoin prices have spiked +6.5% this morning, jumping above +$6,600. While the catalyst behind the move higher is not clear and with few ready to label bitcoin a “true store of value” in turbulent times, BTC has held up better than most of late.

5. Embarrassing losses in Bavarian election shake Merkel’s coalition

Germany’s grand coalition could become even further unstable after coalition members suffered humiliating results in an election in the southern state of Bavaria.

Chancellor Merkel’s Bavarian allies slumped to their worst election results in almost 70 years and her junior coalition partners, the center-left Social Democrats (SPD), saw support in Bavaria halved.

The SPD had hoped that infighting over immigration between Merkel’s Christian Democrats (CDU) and the Bavarian Christian Social Union (CDU) allies would give them a boost in Bavaria.

But instead, the party saw support fall to just under +10%, prompting a discussion over the sustainability of its alliance with Merkel’s conservatives at the national level.

Note: SPD members are still bitter over their leaders’ decision to join a Merkel-led government.

Merkel’s authority may be called into question as soon as in two-weeks in an election in the western state of Hesse – the state is ruled by Merkel’s CDU in a coalition with the Greens, but polls suggest she is losing further support.

Forex heatmap

Pound suffers on Brexit stalemate

 

Pound pressured at start of the week

Weekend news that the latest Brexit negotiations had hit yet another stalemate pressured the pound at this week’s open. UK’s Financial Times reported that PM May is said to call the current draft Brexit deal a “non-starter” and as a result EU leaders may cancel plans for a special summit in November due to the lack of progress in negotiations. EU leaders are supposed to convene for a Brexit summit this Wednesday, and hopes were that a deal could be announced.

GBP/USD hit its lowest level in six days and tested the 100-day moving average support at 1.3099 again. The FX pair had climbed to a three-week high of 1.3259 on Friday on deal hopes, but closed lower on the day. Should the 100-day moving average support be breached convincingly, then the 55-day average at 1.2990 would come in to focus.

 

GBP/USD Daily Chart

Source” Oanda fxTrade

 

Asia Market Update: Echoes of October past

RBA’s Harper reiterates current stance

RBA board member Ian Harper has reiterated the RBA view that interest rates are more likely to rise than fall, however added that a near-term rate increase would “spook” consumers. He commented that a cloud remains over the consumer outlook though some stimulus is coming from a lower Australian dollar, which is helping to support confidence.

Monthly retail sales growth has been either zero or positive over the past eight months, though not setting the economy alight, with a maximum reading of +0.6% in February and the August reading at +0.3%. Meanwhile, Westpac’s consumer confidence index rose above zero for the first time in three months this month.

Aussie has been on the defensive versus the US dollar this morning, looking set to post a decline for the second straight day. AUD/USD is currently at 0.7107 with this month’s previous lows above the 0.7040 level acting as support.

 

AUD/USD Daily Chart

Source: Oanda fxTrade

 

US retail sales expected to show a rebound in September

The Asian data calendar is not yet complete, with Japan’s industrial production and capacity utilization data still pending. The European calendar is barren of tier-1 data, and the highlight of the North American calendar will be US retail sales for September. Sales are expected to rise 0.5% m/m, more than the 0.1% posted for August, and would be back at the June/July levels. The Empire State manufacturing index and business inventories are also due. The Bank of Canada’s business outlook survey is the only release from north of the border.

You can view the full MarketPulse data calendar at https://www.marketpulse.com/economic-events/

 

Market Podcast October 15

Source: MarketPulse – Market Podcast October 15

Friday’s relief rally in full swing

Friday October 12: Five things the markets are talking about

Volatility, in particular, for equities, has notched aggressively higher this week, now that sovereign bond yields are beginning to price out cheap money.

Stronger than expected U.S economic data and weak European underlying inflation in key countries is being blamed as the specific trigger for this week’s ‘bearish’ bout.

However, Chinese trade data released earlier this morning showed better-than-expected growth in Chinese exports has, at least temporarily, helped ease investor concerns about the damage to China’s economy from U.S tariffs and other trade friction.

China’s trade surplus with the U.S widened to a record +$34.1B in September as exports to the American market rose by +13% y/y, despite a worsening tariff war.

Global equities have staged a robust recovery; the ‘big’ dollar trades steady, U.S Treasury yields back up and crude oil prices recover while still heading for the biggest weekly drop in three-months.

Nevertheless, a gradual Fed rate increase remains the order of the day, especially after yesterday’s muted U.S CPI data – the market is pricing in a +25 bps move in December.

Since the Fed’s last meeting in September all data has been in line with the Fed’s depiction of an economy in which low unemployment will be coupled with inflation running near +2% for the foreseeable future.

1. Stocks sell off ends in Asia

Chinese stocks, among the biggest losers in a global market selloff this week, rallied overnight, as investors reassessed the impact of the Sino-U.S trade spat on the country’s economy and its markets.

In Japan, the Nikkei ended higher on Friday as investors took heart from gains in Chinese equities on upbeat export data, which generated buying in manufacturers exposed to China. The Nikkei share average gained +0.5%. On Thursday, the index slid -3.9% and for the week the index was down -4.6%, its biggest weekly drop since March. The broader Topix traded flat.

Down-under, Australia’s ASX 200 lagged most of Asia Pacific overnight as the heavily weighted energy and financial sector held the index back. It ended +0.2% higher, but fell -4.7% for the week. In S. Korea, its stock market rebounded from one of its biggest drops in seven-years. The Kospi rallied +1.5%, its first gain this month. The index fell -4.7% for the week.

In China, the main stock indexes bounced higher overnight after suffering massive losses this week, as investors went bargain hunting on the back of stronger Chinese exports data. At the close, the Shanghai Composite index was +0.9% higher, after touching near four-year lows yesterday. The index was down -7.6% for the week, its worst weekly performance in eight months. The blue-chip CSI300 index closed +1.49% higher.

In Europe, regional indices trade higher across the board rebounding from multi-month lows following a rebound in U.S index futures and Asian Indices.

U.S stocks are set to open deep in the ‘black’ (+0.8%).

2. Oil rebounds, but pares gains on adequate supply, gold lower

Oil has rallied overnight; rebounding after two-days of heavy declines, though prices pared gains after an IEA report deemed supply adequate and the outlook for demand weakening.

Brent crude has rallied +76c to +$81.02 a barrel, having dropped by -3.4% yesterday. U.S crude (WTI) has added +71c to +$71.68.

Note: Brent is still on course for a -3.7% decline this week, the biggest weekly fall in about four-months.

Oil found support from data showing that China’s daily crude imports last month hit their highest in four-months and from a rebound in equities.

Gains were pared, after a monthly report by the IEA said the oil market looked “adequately supplied for now” after a big rise in production and trimmed its forecasts for world oil demand growth this year and next. “This is due to a weaker economic outlook, trade concerns, higher oil prices and a revision to Chinese data,” said the IEA.

Ahead of the open, gold prices are under pressure as global equities rally, but the ‘yellow’ metal trades within striking distance of its 10-week high print in yesterday’s session. Spot gold is down -0.4% at +$1,218.86 an ounce, after rallying +2.5%yesterday, as this weeks equity rout sent investors rushing to safe-havens. U.S gold futures are down -0.4% at +$1,222.30 an ounce.

3. Yields back up on relief

Eurozone government bond markets show signs of relief as equity markets rebound. The 10-year Bund yield is trading +2.3 bps higher at +0.54%, pulling the yields of other core and semi-core issuers higher.

Note: Bunds yields are down from five-month highs reached earlier this week at +0.58%.

Eurozone periphery government bond yields trade lower, indicating a lower level of concern, at least for the day. Italy’s 10-year BTP yield is trading -4.5 bps lower at +3.53%.

Note: Italian 10-year bond yields rose to five-year highs earlier this week on tension between Rome and the E.U over Italy’s expansionary budget plans.

Elsewhere, the yield on 10-year Treasuries has backed up +3 bps to +3.18%, the biggest advance in a week. In the U.K, the 10-year Gilt yield has gained +2 bps to +1.694%. In Japan’s 10-year JGB yield has climbed less than +1 bps to +0.15%.

4. Dollar stable, EM pairs rally

USD initially tested multi-week lows as a weak Wall Street soured its recent bullish sentiment. Nevertheless, the greenback is off its worst levels as the equity sell-off has eased.

After jumping to an 11-day high of €1.1611 overnight, the dollar has stabilized and EUR/USD trades slightly higher, last by +0.1% at €1.1593. However, expect Italian fiscal risks and the direction of U.S yields to continue to drive the EUR/USD.

Emerging-market currencies are having another good day after weathering the global equity selloff this week. The South African rand is up +1.1% at $14.483, and the Mexican peso has gained +1.5% at $18.8718. The Turkish lira has paired some of its gains, but its trading +2% at $5.9451 – up +5% on the week.

The PBoC set yuan at weakest level since March 2017, a day after U.S Treasury staff advised Secretary Steven Mnuchin that China was not manipulating its the exchange rate. The midpoint for the dollar was ¥6.9120.

GBP/USD (£1.3215) is trading within striking distance of its three-week highs on hope for a Brexit agreement at the upcoming E.U leader summit next week. There is speculation that PM May is close to an agreement, but obstacles remain, as she requires the DUP Party ally and rebel Tory members support.

5. Eurozone factory output rebounds

Data this morning showed that industrial production in the eurozone rebounded strongly in August, as surges in Italy and the Netherlands offset weakness in Germany to suggest economic growth across the currency bloc continues at a modest pace.

The E.U’s statistics agency said industrial production was +1% higher in August than in July, and up +0.9% on year. The market was looking for a monthly gain of just +0.2%.

It was the first rise in production since May, following two straight months of decline.

Today’s healthy rebound will likely reassure the ECB that the economy is on course to grow more slowly this year than last, but still at a rate that will lead to new jobs being created, thereby pushing wages and inflation higher.

Note: The IMF trimmed its eurozone growth forecast for this year to +2% from +2.2%, noticeably downgrading its growth projection for Germany to +1.9% from +2.2%.

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