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Price action: Since the North American markets closed Wednesday, the foreign exchange market has been subdued.  Most of the major currencies are +/- 0.2%.  The Antipodeans and sterling have risen a bit more.  The euro is in the middle of this week’s range (~$1.0850-$1.0965).  The dollar is at the upper end of this week- range against the Japanese yen (~JPY147.15-JPY149.75).  Sterling is trading near the high for the week set in Europe today near $1.2565.  Recall that the $1.2590 area is the (50%) retracement of the losses since the March high (~$1.3140). The Australian dollar is firm but holding below the week’s high (~$0.6590) and the 200-day moving average (~$0.6585).  The US dollar settled on Wednesday slightly above CAD1.3685.  It has been in a range of roughly CAD1.3650-CAD1.3710 but is trading near Wednesday’s settlement.  The greenback is consolidating within the range set on Wednesday against the Chinese yuan (~CNY7.1365-CNY7.1650).  

Developments

A. Reports indicate China is consider new bolder efforts to support the property market.  Developer stocks rallied. 

B. Far-right won the most seats in the Dutch election, but market took in stride as Wilder’s Freedom Party may have the more seats than any other party, it looks almost impossible for him to cobble together a majority coalition.  Still, shows shift in Europe—especially anti-immigration. 

C. OPEC’s meeting was delayed until next week amid reports of discord, like in June over quotas. Many had expected an extension of Saudi Arabia’s cuts and maybe pressure on others to cut.  January WTI fell on the news. 

D. Preliminary PMIs

  • Australia softened.  Manufacturing and services eased, and the         composite fell to 46.4 from 47.6.

  • EMU showed improvement but all the readings remain below 50 boom/bust.

  • German’s composite rose to 47.1 from 45.9, it is the highest since July.

  • France’s PMI deteriorated slightly, the opposite of Germany, and the composite slipped to 44.5 from 44.6.

  • The UK’s PMI was The surprise.  Its PMI was better than expected, and the improvement saw services move above 50 and so did the composite, for the first time since July.   Sterling led the G10 currencies higher yesterday.  

E. Germany’s Constitutional Court ruled recently that a plan to shift Covid funds in an off-budget facility to climate change was unconstitutional.  It has thrown German fiscal policy into disarray and the government has been forced to suspend it debt brake again.  In effect, the court decision created a 37 bln euro fiscal hole.  The market fears it will be filled by new issuance.  This has triggered a steep sell-off of European bonds and appears to be pushing US yields higher too, and dragging up JGB yields.  Separately, the Bundesbank warned in its financial stability report that financial institutions “book values are often higher than current market values, so selling securities would result in losses.“  

F. Japan’s October national CPI rose slightly less than expected, but the report was broadly in line with the Tokyo CPI that was released a few weeks ago.  For the nation, October CPI rose to 3.3% from 3.0% (median forecast in Bloomberg’s survey was for 3.4%).  The core measure, which excludes fresh food rose by 2.9% from 2.8% (3.0% median forecast), while if energy is also excluded the core-core measure eased to 4.0% from 4.2% (4.1% expected).  

G. North America today

  • The US sees the flash November PMI.  Slightly softer readings are expected but the composite is expected to have remained above 50.

  • Canada reports September retail sales.  The median forecast is for a flat report and a small decline excluding autos.

  • Mexico reports IGAE surveys, which are likely to have moderated in September, and Q3 GDP revision (from 3.3% year-over-year and 0.9% quarter-over-quarter.

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Opinions expressed are solely of the author’s, based on current market conditions, and are subject to change without notice. These opinions are not intended to predict or guarantee the future performance of any currencies or markets. This material is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as research or as investment, legal or tax advice, nor should it be considered information sufficient upon which to base an investment decision. Further, this communication should not be deemed as a recommendation to invest or not to invest in any country or to undertake any specific position or transaction in any currency. There are risks associated with foreign currency investing, including but not limited to the use of leverage, which may accelerate the velocity of potential losses. Foreign currencies are subject to rapid price fluctuations due to adverse political, social and economic developments. These risks are greater for currencies in emerging markets than for those in more developed countries. Foreign currency transactions may not be suitable for all investors, depending on their financial sophistication and investment objectives. You should seek the services of an appropriate professional in connection with such matters. The information contained herein has been obtained from sources believed to be reliable, but is not necessarily complete in its accuracy and cannot be guaranteed.

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