To the scoreboard:
Dow: 22,284.32 -11.77 (-0.05%)
S&P 500: 2,496.84 +0.18 (+0.01%)
AUD/USD: 0.7887 -0.0049 (-0.62%)
ASX200 SPI futures (December contracts): 5,675 (+16)
Iron ore benchmark 62% fines: $US64.95/t (+3%)
1. Greenback gains momentum: The US dollar index climbed for the third straight session and the euro is back under $US1.18 for the first time since August 24, as the market assesses the political climate in Europe following Germany’s weekend election. The USD also got a boost after US Fed chair Janet Yellen gave a measured speech overnight, but indicated that the Fed was still on track for a December rate hike.
2. AUD takes another fall: The Aussie closed below US79 cents for the first time in more than a month, as talk of an imminent proposal for US tax reform also helped the US dollar gain traction. The AUD fell as low as 0.7858 before finding support:
3. No dramas: Markets started in risk-off mode overnight, but despite the continued war of words between the US and North Korea most asset classes shrugged off the threat of conflict over the course of the session. Gold started higher but finished more than 1% lower at $1,285 an ounce, the USD moved back above 112 Japanese yen and the yield on benchmark US 10-year bonds edged 2 basis points higher to 2.24%.
4. Global stocks hit the snooze button: US stocks held steady as tech stocks saw demand following yesterday’s sell-off. The UK’s FTSE index dipped slightly while the pan-European STOXX600 index edged to a two-month high. ASX futures traders are again confident of a strong opening another poor showing yesterday, with the local index anchored at the bottom end of its recent trading range.
5. Iron ore climbs off the mat: Buyers finally stepped in for benchmark 62% fines last night, after spot prices had fallen 20% from their recent high. Oil eased back from its two-year high at just below $60 a barrel, finishing 1% down. Base metals were mixed, as copper fell for the fourth straight session and nickel was down more than 1% while zinc prices edged higher.
6. Goldman or Google?: Amid the rise of the global tech titans, Goldman Sachs’ aim to become the Google of Wall Street is well underway. According to a research report by CB insights, almost half of the bank’s new job listings are for technology roles. This chart tells the story: