Your morning market update, where it’s all a bit choppy:
– It’s not much of a recovery we are seeing in markets at the moment, which is normal after the plunge of late last week and early this week, but it does tell you that traders are worried about entering before the results of the US non-farm payrolls are out tomorrow at 12.30pm AEDT.
– To that end, the ADP employment report, which printed 175,000 against 180,000 expected, disappointed mildly. It was down sharply from last month’s 227,000 and traders and investors are clearly worried that last month’s tiny 74,000 rise in non-farms may not be the aberration that it was thought to be. Elsewhere on the data front, Markit services PMI’s were lower in most of Europe and EU retail sales fell 1.6% in December against the expected fall of 0.5%. ISM services in the US was 54, slightly more than expected.
– So at the close, in what can only be characterised as “choppy trade”, the Dow is down 5 or 0.03% to 15,540, and the Nasdaq and S&P 500 are down 0.48% and 0.18% respectively. The S&P sits at 1,752 this morning.
– In Europe, traders are waiting to see if ECB boss Mario Draghi will give the markets a little sugar hit in the form of a rate cut or hints of QE tonight. Stocks were down early but recovered as US markets rose off the lows. At the close, the FTSE was up 0.14%, the DAX rose 0.13%, the CAC was unchanged and stocks in Madrid and Milan were 0.21% and 0.26% higher.
– Closer to home, the SPI 200 contract traded briefly under 5000 yesterday afternoon when Asian markets were swooning but it’s 12 points higher overnight to 5031 bid.
– On FX markets, the Aussie dollar was under pressure along with the ASX yesterday afternoon, trading down to 0.8870. It recovered its poise and sits at 0.8910 this morning. Euro and sterling haven’t moved much, sitting at 1.3532 and 1.6310 respectively. USDJPY recovered from yesterday’s low like the Aussie and sits at 101.38 this morning.
– Commodities are moving around as well and waiting to see where risk goes, on or off. Crude is largely unchanged at $97.27 even though the stock build was only about 20% of what the market was forecasting. Gold is up $5 to $1258.80 while Copper is unchanged at $3.22 lb. The Ags’ recovery continued with Corn up 0.4%, Wheat 0.51% higher, while Soybeans rose 0.17%.
On the data front, retail sales and trade are out at 11.30am AEDT in Australia before German factory orders tonight, and the ECB and BoE policy decisions. In the US, the Challenger Job cuts data will be watched closely for a lead on tomorrow night’s non-farm payrolls.