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The Australian market commences Friday trade ahead of key data out of Japan today and out of the US, UK and Europe tonight, plus Monday public holidays across China and much of Asia and western Europe.
In overnight commodities trade, US gold futures settled almost flat. Oil fell. LME copper pulled back. Iron ore (China port, 62% Fe) turned moderately lower.
The $A traded in a relatively narrow range after dropping below US74.70c early yesterday evening.
Locally today, a deluge of corporate quarterly reports and market updates is anticipated.
March private sector credit and March quarter producer prices are also due, 11.30am AEST.
From pre-trade, Japan releases a swag of March economic indicators, including: CPI, industrial production, household spending and employment figures.
This morning, New Zealand has reported a $NZ332M March trade surplus, against expectations of $NZ425M. Year-on-year, the figures produced a $NZ3.67B deficit, following forecasts of a $NZ3.61B deficit.
China is expected to release official April PMIs late-weekend.
China’s markets are scheduled to be closed Monday during the Labour Day public holiday.
Choppy trade featured across major European and US equities markets amid a deluge of corporate reporting and a swag of US data, ahead of influential economic indicators tonight.
In addition, European Central Bank (ECB) president Mario Draghi told a post-policy meeting press conference that the euro zone faced fewer risks and that the region’s recovery was more solid and broad-based.
Rates were kept at status quo however, due to weak underlying inflation.
Germany’s initial April CPI growth estimate came in at 2% year-on-year.
In US data releases, weekly new unemployment claims rose but the four-week average fell.
Durable goods orders undershot expectations, rising 0.7%, but nonetheless improving for t here consecutive months.
Wholesale inventories declined 0.1% year-on-year.
March pending home sales fell 0.8%.
The Kansas City Fed manufacturing index dropped 13 points to seven, a five-month low.
Tonight in the US, an initial March quarter GDP estimate is keenly anticipated, ahead of next week’s Federal Reserve policy meeting.
March personal income and spending, a Chicago PMI and a consumer sentiment reading are also due.
Across the Atlantic, the UK will also publish March quarter GDP growth.
In the euro zone, a preliminary April CPI estimate is anticipated, following 1.5% in March.
Agricultural Bank of China, Baoshan Iron & Steel, Barclays, Chevron, Colgate-Palmolive, Exxon Mobil, Fujitsu, General Motors, Hebei Iron & Steel, Honda Motor, Industrial & Commercial Bank of China, Phillips 66, Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS), Sanofi, Sony, UBS and Yanzhou Coal are among companies listed to report earnings or provide updates today and tonight.
In overnight corporate news, Amazon and Alphabet reported impressive earnings post-US trade, and are hence expected to boost at least some initial US sentiment tonight. Each stock rose more than 4% in after-hours trade.
During regular trade, results from Comcast (cable specialist), Intuit and PayPal (rose 8%) helped boost the NASDAQ to a new record peak.
European markets are heading into a Monday holiday weekend.