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I. Market focus
A relative calm prevailed in the foreign exchange markets at the beginning of Tuesday’s session. The main currency pairs remained within narrow ranges, while the U.S. dollar stood near the highs reached the previous day against most currencies.
The outcomes of the Reserve Bank of Australia’s (RBA) monetary policy meeting were fully expected: the regulator left its cash rate unchanged at 1.50 percent. The statement accompanying the regulator’s decision did not differ much from the previous one: the RBA repeated its views that outlook for household consumption is one continuing source of uncertainty, while wages growth remains low and this may continue for some time. Overall, the markets did not receive any new information, therefore the completion of the RBA meeting did not have a significant impact on the market performance.
The markets also digested reports that the UK intends to offer the EU a compromise plan for a Brexit. According to media reports, the UK Prime Minister Theresa May’s offer applies to the border between Northern Ireland and the Irish Republic. In particular, London will implement simplified customs procedures on the border between the British mainland and Northern Ireland after Brexit in exchange for allowing all of the U.K. to remain in the EU's customs regime. Britain’s offers are clearly not equivalent, therefore it is unlikely that the EU will agree with such a compromise. Although, it is possible that the final plan of the UK government will differ from the media reports, and London and Brussels will reach a compromise.
Tuesday's session will not be busy with the releases of important macroeconomic data. The main scheduled event of the day may be the comments of the Federal Reserve’s Chairman Jerome Powell, who will speak at the 60th Annual National Association for Business Economics Annual Meeting in Boston at 16:45 GMT. His speech will be devoted to the outlook for employment and inflation. Audience Q&A expected.
II. The market highlights are:
A report from the Institute for Supply Management (ISM) revealed on Monday the U.S. manufacturing sector expanded in September at a slower pace than in August. The ISM's index of manufacturing activity came in at 59.8 percent last month, down 1.5 percentage points from the unrevised August figure of 61.3 percent, missing economists' forecast for a 60.3 percent reading. A reading above 50 percent indicates expansion, while a reading below 50 percent indicates contraction. The monthly drop by the headline index was primarily attributable to slower increases in the new orders index (-3.3 percentage points m-o-m to 61.8 percent in September), the supplier deliveries index (-3.4 percentage points m-o-m to 61.1 percent), the inventories index (-2.1 percentage points to 53.3 percent) and the prices index (-5.2 percentage points m-o-m to 66.9 percent). These declines, however, were somewhat offset by gains in the production index (+0.6 percentage point m-o-m to 63.9 percent in September), the employment index (+0.3 percentage point m-o-m to 58.8 percent). Timothy R. Fiore, Chair of the ISM Manufacturing Business Survey Committee said, “The past relationship between the PMI and the overall economy indicates that the PMI for September (59.8 percent) corresponds to a 5.1-percent increase in real gross domestic product (GDP) on an annualized basis.”
The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) decided to leave the cash rate unchanged at 1.50 percent at its October monetary policy meeting. The move was widely expected by the markets. The tone of the statement accompanying the regulator’s decision did not differ much from the previous one. The RBA reiterated that the outlook for the labour market remains positive. “A further gradual decline in the unemployment rate is expected over the next couple of years to around 5 percent. Wages growth remains low, although it has picked up a little. The improvement in the economy should see some further lift in wages growth over time, although this is likely to be a gradual process,” the RBA noted. Meanwhile, the outlook for household consumption was repeated to remain “the continuing source of uncertainty”. “Growth in household income remains low and debt levels are high. The drought has led to difficult conditions in parts of the farm sector,” the statement said. Despite this, the bank's central forecast remains for growth to average a bit above 3 percent in 2018 and 2019.
The Cabinet Office reported on Tuesday that consumer confidence in Japan improved slightly this month. The seasonally adjusted consumer confidence index increased to 43.4 in September from 43.3 in August. The reading exceeded the economists’ forecast of 43.0. A score above 50 indicates optimism, while a score below 50 shows the lack of confidence. According to the report, perception improved for willingness to buy durable goods (+0.4 points m-o-m to 42.4) and income growth (+0.1 percent m-o-m to 41.9). Meanwhile, the perception of overall livelihood (-0.2 points m-o-m to 41.5) recorded a marginal decrease, and the perceptions on employment were steady (at 47.7).
III. Market Situation
The currency pair EUR/USD fell moderately, refreshing a three-week low, due to the further strengthening of the U.S. currency as well as sales in the euro amid lingering concerns about the Italian budget deficit. Investors were also adjusting their positions ahead of the Fed Chairman Jerome Powell’s speech at the 60th Annual National Association for Business Economics Annual Meeting in Boston. Powell will speak on “The outlook for employment and inflation.” If the tone of the Fed's statements is hawkish, this may give an additional impetus to the U.S. dollar. Resistance level - $1.1651 (high of September 28). Support level - $1.1526 (low of September 10).
The currency pair GBP/USD traded lower, nearing the previous day’s low. The pair was weighed down by the broad strengthening of the U.S. dollar. The focus of market participants was also on the reports that the UK intends to offer the EU a compromise plan for a Brexit. According to the media, the UK Prime Minister Theresa May’s offer applies to the border between Northern Ireland and the Irish Republic. In addition, investors were preparing for the release of the UK’ data on business activity in the construction sector. Economists expect the manufacturing purchasing manager index (PMI) probably dropped to 52.5 points in September from 52.9 points in August. Apart from the data, traders will also focus on the dynamics of the U.S. currency and the general market sentiment toward risky assets. Resistance level - $1.3115 (high of October 1). Support level - $1.2964 (low of September 11).
The currency pair AUD/USD fell sharply, refreshing the previous day’s low, on the back of the strengthening of the U.S. dollar and the outcomes of the latest meeting of the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA). As widely expected, the RBA left its cash rate unchanged at 1.50 percent and signaled it saw no strong case for near-term policy change. The regulator repeated that outlook for household consumption is one continuing source of uncertainty, while wages growth remains low and this may continue for some time. Despite this, however, the bank expects that Australia’s GDP will show a growth of “a bit above 3 percent” in 2018 and 2019, and the unemployment rate will decline “to around 5 percent” over the next couple of years. Resistance level - AUD0.7314 (high of September 26). Support level - AUD0.7141 (low of September 17).
The currency pair USD/JPY fell slightly, due to a partial profit-taking after the recent rally. However, a further decline was limited by the strengthening of the U.S. dollar. Investors also digested the reports that Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe kept key ministers in their posts in a cabinet reshuffle on Tuesday, including Trade and Industry Minister, Foreign Minister, and Economy Minister, who were engaged in trade negotiations with the United States. States. Resistance level - Y114.34 (high of November 7, 2017). Support level - Y113.31 (low of September 28).
U.S. stock indexes closed mostly higher on Monday, supported by Canada joining the United States and Mexico in a trade agreement to revamp the Nafta trade deal. Focus also was on the ISM manufacturing index, which came in at 59.8 percent in September, down 1.5 percentage points from the unrevised August figure of 61.3 percent. It also was below economists' forecast for a 60.3 percent reading. A reading above 50 percent indicates expansion, while a reading below 50 percent indicates contraction.
Asian stock indexes closed mostly lower on Tuesday, amid concerns over global growth. China’s stock market was closed for a public holiday.
European stock indexes are expected to trade mixed in the morning trading session.
Yields of US 10-year notes hold at 3.07% (-1 basis points)
Yields of German 10-year bonds hold at 0.48% (0 basis points)
Yields of UK 10-year gilts hold at 1.46% (0 basis points)
Light Sweet Crude Oil (WTI) futures traded higher. Crude oil for delivery in November settled at $75.58 (+0.37%). The crude oil prices rose moderately, amid concerns that U.S. sanctions on Iran, expected in November, could cause oil supply shortages. Market participants are now awaiting data on oil inventories in the U.S. Today, the American Petroleum Institute (API) will publish its weekly data on the U.S. crude oil stockpiles. Tomorrow, the focus will be on official report on crude inventories in the U.S. from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA).
Gold traded at $1,192.10 (+0.26%). Gold prices rose slightly, correcting after the previous day’s drop. Gold was also supported by a decline in the U.S. Treasury yields.
IV. The most important scheduled events (time GMT 0)
Producer Price Index
FOMC Member Quarles Speaks
Fed Chair Powell Speech
AIG Services Index
|remaining time till the new event being published|
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