Dave Lutz, the head of exchange-traded funds at JonesTrading, has a quick overview of what traders are talking about on Monday. In brief:
- US stock futures are lower to start the week as investors are willing to take less risk.
- Meanwhile, the US dollar index is near a six-week low on “America-first” angst. That refers to concerns that more protectionist trade policies could be detrimental. NBC News reported that President Donald Trump is expected to sign an executive order as early as Monday to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).
- McDonald’s reported fourth-quarter sales that topped expectations ahead of the opening bell. Halliburton beat profit estimates amid increased drilling activity in the US with the upturn in oil prices.
Markets under some pressure – “broadly risk off tone” says the wires. While industrials off only small, Russell getting hit for 30bp as the $ falls on “America First” angst. Overseas, Europe all red — DAX off 40bp as the Fins drop, offsetting a rally in the Discretionary names. Italy outperforming on Generali chatter, moving the MIB back into the green. Volumes are pacing roughly average. FTSE getting hit for 50bp as the Pound jumps higher, but those Miners are seeing some decent buying pressure. In Asia, Hang Seng closed up small as Casinos rallied sharply on Macau #s – Shanghai climbed 40bp – Aussie 1month lows – Yen Strength hit Nikkei for 1.3% – Emerging Markets snapped a two-day losing streak.
There was heavy buying in Asian trade of Bunds and Treasuries, but that seems to be reversing, with the German 10YY moving back towards 41bp and US 10YY unch. FX Angst from the Inaugural protectionist tone has the DXY on 6week lows – Pound hits five-week high as PM May prepares to meet Trump Friday – Mexican peso touches two-week high, while the Turkish Lira slides into their Central Bank call tomorrow. With the weaker $ – Base Metals rallying with Gold hitting two-month highs, and Industrial metals higher despite Ore losing 40bp ahead of Chinese New Year. Energy complex a sea of red as the biggest jump in Rig Count in 4 years has Oil off 1.5%, while Natty gas drops 1%. Softs looking mixed across the board.
Pretty quiet day of catalysts ahead, with Conference Board China December Leading Economic Index at 9 – Bank of England Bond-Buying Operation Results at 9:50, and EU Consumer Confidence at 10. Down in Washington, at 3:30 the Chairman of House Ways and Means Tax Policy subcmte will give a speech on tax system overhaul. At 4:30 the Senate Foreign Relations Cmte scheduled to vote on Rex Tillerson’s nomination for secretary of State. We get unlocks from BBG, BIOA, BLUE, ENBL, KDMN, USAC and the street’s attention is on HAL and YHOO numbers after the close.
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