Market Opener – 15 Mar 2019
Local Markets Commentary
The Australian market opens Friday trade following marked vacillating overnight international equities trade amid broad unresolve political tension, and with no scheduled major domestic data releases.
In decidedly mixed overnight commodities trade, Brent crude pulled back and WTI rose further.
US gold futures (April) turned and fell.
Iron ore (China port, 62% Fe) rallied.
LME copper and nickel fell. Aluminium settled little changed.
The $A effectively trod water after falling to ~US70.65c early yesterday evening.
Regionally today, the Bank of Japan is due to announce outcomes from its policy meeting 2pm AEDT.
China reports February home prices 12.30pm AEDT.
Locally, stocks trading ex-dividend today include MIN and TRS. Please see pp3-4 for a detailed list.
Overseas Market Commentary
Marked vacillations featured across major European and US equities markets overnight, amid political and trade strain, plus lacklustre data, on both sides of the Atlantic.
In addition, earlier yesterday, China had released a mixed set of industrial production, retail sales and fixed asset investment figures that spawned varying interpretations.
Speculation also abounded regarding the status of China-US trade talks, with the US president offering there was ‘no rush’ to sign an agreement as media reports emerged suggesting any US-China leaders’ meeting was unlikely to occur before April.
In the US Senate, the president’s emergency declaration in association with Mexico-US border security was voted down.
Meanwhile, the UK House of Commons voted (412 – 202) to push back the UK-EU separation date from 29 March until at least 30 June.
This pushed down the British pound from this week’s nine-month peaks.
Earlier, European Council president Donald Tusk appeared to promote an extended pushback to EU members.
Among new data releases, Germany’s final February CPI growth reading was calculated at 0.4% for the month and 1.5% year-on-year, following 0.8% deflation for January.
In the US, weekly new unemployment claims defied forecasters, rising by 6000, three times more than predicted.
January new home sales tumbled 6.9% for the month and 4% year-on-year. December sales had improved by 3.8%.
February import prices were reported 0.6% higher for the month, mostly on higher energy costs, following a 0.1% January gain.
Initially, the January figure had been reported as a 0.5% fall.
Year-on-year, February import prices represented a 1.3% drop.
Export prices rose 0.6% for the month, and 0.3% year-on-year, after falling 0.5% and 0.2% respectively in January.
Tonight in the US, a New York business activity index, initial March University of Michigan consumer sentiment estimate, January job openings and January industrial production are due.
Elsewhere, a final February CPI reading is due for the euro zone
Companies scheduled to report earnings or provide an update include: Barclays and Prada.
In overnight corporate news, General Electric provided guidance that undershot expectations.
Adobe, Broadcom and Oracle reported post-US trade, guidance, sales and promised shareholder returns initially spawning mixed reactions.