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Good morning, Australia

Craig James
Monday, April 15, 2019

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How’dy USA

In US economic data, export prices rose 0.6% in March (forecast +1.1%) with import prices also up 0.6% (forecast +0.4%). Consumer sentiment eased from 98.4 to 96.9 in April (forecast 98).

US share markets were firmer on Friday. Investors were encouraged by earnings from JP Morgan Chase (shares up by 4.7%). Financials rose 1.9%. Shares in Walt Disney rose 11.5% to an all-time high after reporting pricing on its upcoming streaming service. Chevron (-4.9%) said it would buy Anadarko Petroleum (+32%) for $33 billion in cash and stock. The Dow Jones index rose by 269 points or 1.0%. The S&P500 index rose by 0.7% and is nearing record highs. And the Nasdaq index rose by 37 points or 0.5%. Over the week the Dow fell 0.1% with the S&P 500 up 0.5% and the Nasdaq rose by 0.6%.

US treasuries were weaker on Friday (yields higher). Investor risk appetite grew with stocks and commodities favoured over safe haven government bonds. US 2-year yields rose by 4 points to 2.39% and US 10-year yields rose by 6 points to 2.56%. Over the week US 2-year yields rose by 6 points and US 10-year yields rose by 5 points.

Bonjour Europe

European share markets rose on Friday. Autos rose 2%, with banks up 1.9% and basic resources up 1.2%. The pan-European STOXX600 index rose by 0.2%. The German Dax rose by 0.5% and the UK FTSE was higher by 0.3%. And in London trade, shares of Rio Tinto rose by 1.2% while BHP rose by 0.6%. 

Hello World!

Major currencies were firmer against the US dollar in US and European trade compared with the Asia close. The Euro rose from near US$1.1280 to US$1.1325 and was near US$1.1300 in late US trade. The Aussie dollar rose from near US71.20 cents to near US71.90 cents and was near US71.70 cents in late US trade. And the Japanese yen eased from 111.75 yen per US dollar to near JPY112.10 and was around JPY112.00 in late US trade.

Global oil prices rose on Friday. Investors were encouraged by better-than-expected Chinese export data. And investors believe that sanctions on Venezuela and Iran and conflict in Libya will continue to restrict global oil supplies. But the number of US oil rigs in operation rose by 2 last week to 833, potentially leading to higher supplies in the future. Brent crude rose by US72 cents or 1.0% to US$71.55 a barrel and US Nymex rose by US31 cents or 0.5% to US$63.89 a barrel. Over the week Brent rose 1.7% and Nymex rose by 1.3%.

Base metal prices were higher by up to 3.1% with zinc doing the best. But aluminium rose just 0.2% and lead fell 0.1%. Over the week metals fell by between 0.4-2.9% with nickel down the least and lead down the most. But copper rose by 1.2% with zinc up 1.7%.

The gold futures price rose by US$1.90 an ounce or 0.1% to $1,295.20 an ounce. The spot gold price was near US$1,290 an ounce in late US trade. Over the week gold fell by US40 cents. Iron ore rose by US80 cents or 0.8% to US$95.80 a tonne. Over the week iron ore rose by US$3.00 or 3.2%.

G’day Australia

In Australia no major data is scheduled. In the US, the Empire State index is expected with capital flows data.

Published: Monday, April 15, 2019

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