To the scoreboard:
- Dow: 25,064.50 -134.79 (-0.53%)
- S&P500: 2,804.49 -11.13 (-0.40%)
- AUD/USD: 0.7359 -0.0039 (-0.53%)
- ASX SPI futures (September contracts): 6,201 (-11)
1. US President Trump said overnight that he’s “not thrilled” with the Federal Reserve raising interest rates. The comments break with a longstanding precedent of the White House not commenting on central bank policy in respect of its independence.
2. Trump’s comments took the heat out of a rally in the US dollar, which rose strongly following indications that Chinese authorities may adopt a more hands-off approach amid the USD’s appreciation against the yuan. The AUD hit an overnight low of 0.7322 US cents before gaining back some ground.
3. Markets adopted a cautious tone as trade war fears still linger. China’s foreign ministry spokesperson said Washington blaming Beijing on progression of trade talks is “bogus”. White House Economic Advisor Larry Kudlow suggested Wednesday that Chinese President Xi Jinping was stalling a potential deal.
4. There were no big surprises in the latest round of US earnings results, but the S&P500 dipped following falls in Chinese and European markets. London’s FTSE edged higher amid weakness in the pound, following a miss in UK retail sales data.
5. Commodities under pressure: Copper prices briefly hit a 1-year low, while early strength in the USD saw gold slump again before it recouped some losses. Iron ore held steady, while oil traded flat. Bitcoin held its value above $US7,400, and a new benchmark pricing index for cryptos may be on the way.
6. And looking ahead, the US federal deficit is now expected to top $US1 trillion by next year. New deficit figures submitted by the White House last week are $US926 billion higher for the next 10 years than previous estimates.
Here’s look at today’s economic calendar:
- G20 finance ministers meet in Buenos Aires.
- General Electric reports earnings.
- Retail sales and CPI are out in Canada.
- The eurozone reports current account numbers.
Have a great weekend.
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