To the scoreboard:
- Dow: 25,462.58 +136.42 (+0.54%)
- S&P 500: 2,840.35 +13.13 (+0.46%)
- AUD/USD: 0.7400 +0.0040 (+0.54%)
- ASX200 SPI futures (March contracts): 6,204 (+21)
1. US jobs data on Friday night showed the unemployment rate held near an 18-year low. But the headline jobs figure missed estimates while wage growth was unchanged — a result which reinforced the current US economic paradigm of steady growth with low inflation.
2. With few signs of inflationary pressures in the US jobs data, bond yields dipped in the wake of the release. That gave US stocks a boost, after European markets climbed on some solid earnings reports. A positive global lead means the ASX looks set to open higher this morning.
3. Trade war fears still linger, with China now threatening to impose tariffs on $US60 billion worth of US goods in response to President Trump’s latest trade threat. Currency traders will also be watching the yuan this week after Chinese policy makers stepped in to support the currency on Friday.
4. Bitcoin slumped below $US7,000 over the weekend, after the forced cancellation of a $US416 million bitcoin futures trade on Hong Kong exchange OKex. Strategists at Goldman think BTC’s decline will continue, while the owner of the New York Stock Exchange has team up with Microsoft to create a crypto ecosystem.
5. The UK pound briefly dipped below $US1.30 on Friday after Bank of England Governor Mark Carney said the risk of a no-deal Brexit remains “uncomfortably high“. Both the euro and the pound remain under pressure this morning, while the AUD is holding steady after rallying back towards US74 cents on Friday.
6. In commodities, copper bounced off the mat on Friday — a move which helped provide support for the Aussie. And oil will be in focus today after prices edged lower on Friday, and Saudi Arabia said over the weekend that it will resume oil exports through the Red Sea shipping lane.
The week ahead: Domestically, the RBA takes centre stage this week with the monthly interest rate meeting on Tuesday, and the latest Statement on Monetary Policy (SoMP) on Friday. Looking abroad, Chinese trade data will be in focus on Wednesday. The full calendar is here.
Have a great week.
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