Asian Stock Markets : Nikkei down 0.14%, Shanghai Composite down 1.42%, Hang Seng down 0.53%, ASX down 0.22%
Commodities : Gold at $1344.30 (-0.33%), Silver at $17.19 (-0.31%), WTI Oil at $73.61 (-0.23%), Brent Oil at $68.09 (-0.29%)
Rates : US 10-year yield at 2.914, UK 10-year yield at 1.506, Germany 10-year yield at 0.595
News & Data:
(GBP) Retail Sales m/m -1.20% vs -0.50% expected
(USD) Philly Fed Manufacturing Index 23.2 vs 20.8 expected
(USD) Unemployment Claims 232K vs 230K expected
Stable China-U.S. relations contribute to global prosperity: Chinese ambassador to US
Japan's Aso: Current account imbalance must be addressed via multilateral framework
Asian markets traded lower today, primarily due to spillover from Chinese equities. Waning smartphone demand, reported by one of the largest Taiwanese chip makers is believed to be the trigger for today’s fall. High oil prices continue to stir inflation fears, and soverign bonds continue to flail as a result.
ASX’s major banks flat following latest barrage of headlines related to the ongoing Royal Commission. The enquiry has prompted the government to increase penalties for corporate misconduct and empower the regulators.
Chinese markets are in the red; reports have emerged that the US Treasury is considering an emergency law that will effective block Chinese investments in US technology companies.
Liquidity has also been a focus as PBoC skipped OMOs today. Nikkei downside been capped as yen touches its lowest against vs USD in a week. Japanese inflation fell ahead of next week’s BoJ meeting, where policymakers are expected to reassure markets they are nowhere near exiting ultra-loose policies.
In currency markets, the main mover was sterling which dived late on Thursday when Bank of England Governor Mark Carney cooled expectations for an interest rate hike in May, pointing out there were “other meetings” this year. Oil prices were creeping up again after hitting their highest since late 2014 on drawdowns in global supply and as Saudi Arabia looks to fatten its export revenue
09:30 AM GMT – (GBP) MPC Member Saunders Speaks
11:30 AM GMT – (EUR) German Buba President Weidmann Speaks