Good morning and happy Friday.
To the scoreboard:
Dow: 24,509.49 -75.94 (-0.31%)
S&P 500: 2,651.78 -11.07 (-0.42%)
AUD/USD: 0.7671 +0.0035 (+0.46%)
ASX200 SPI futures (December contracts): 6,018 (+5)
1. There was a wave of central bank activity overnight, as ECB President Mario Draghi upgraded growth forecasts although inflation is expected to remain below the bank’s 2% target range all the way to 2020. The Bank of England kept rates on hold at 0.5% and remains optimistic about Brexit, while Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz didn’t rule out further rate rises in 2018.
2. Aussie dollar edges higher: The AUD built off momentum from yesterday’s bumper jobs report, although it couldn’t break higher above US77 cents. The steepest move was in the Canadian dollar, which rose sharply after Poloz’s hawkish speech. The US dollar index is flat despite a strong retail sales report, with the greenback largely propped up overnight by weakness in the euro.
3. It’s a done deal: The deal that had markets talking is now official, with Disney set to buy Fox’s film and TV assets for $US52.4 billion. US stocks tracked lower into the close amid holdups on the tax bill, with Senator Marco Rubio stating he’ll vote no unless further changes are made.
4. Ripple in the waters: Cryptocurrency Ripple (XRP) almost doubled overnight and its market capitalisation has now risen by $US18 billion for the week. And there’s a specific demographic group which dominates Bitcoin trading, according to research by Deutsche Bank.
5. Bond markets calm: Major bond markets were little changed in the wake of all the central bank activity, with benchmark US 10-year bond yields holding steady at 2.35%. Turkish 10-year yields rose 12 basis points and the Turkish lira slumped by 2% after the central bank raised interest rates by 50 basis points to try and corral inflation — less than the 100 basis points the market expected:
6. Iron ore dips: Iron ore fell for the sixth time in eight sessions, but amid the recent choppiness it’s holding at the same levels it started the month. And it was a good night for base metals, as copper continues to climb off its recent lows while zinc and nickel both rose by 1%. Benchmark crude oil was also up more than 1% for the day while gold is holding steady at just above $US1,1250 an ounce.
Have a great weekend.
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