The US CPI report was good news for bulls as it suggests the FOMC can start easing off the brakes, though this is not likely in May (69% chance of another hike). Some market participants believe one more 25bp and they will be done, others remain Hawkish and that moving CORE CPI & CPE from the 5% to the 3-2% range will prove problematic and this could mean hikes in May and June too.
FOMC minutes showed considerable discussions over the banking turmoil, as indicated in Chair Powell’s press conference. The “banking sector” was the literally the lead paragraph of the report and was mentioned 24 times overall, compared to zero in February. There was some overall softening in outlooks, which also “increased the already-high level of uncertainty associated with the outlooks on economic activity.” However, ultimately “all” participants supported the 25 bp rate hike. A mild recession is expected from the FOMC.
The Bank of Canada left its target rate at 4.50%, as expected, unchanged from March after the 25 bp tightening in January. But it was a “hawkish” pause as inflation and economic activity have not really evolved as expected. CAD gained on the news.
Volatility dominated the newsflow yesterday. USD dived and remains pressured, EUR, Sterling & AUD all benefitted. US Stocks markets all closed lower, and this fed through to mixed Asian markets and European & US Futures. Treasury markets caught an extra bid and yields finished lower, led by the 2-year’s 6.5 bp slide to 3.958% & the 10-year’s +3.5 bp to 3.395%, remaining 56 bp inverted. Gold and Oil both benefited from a weaker USD and BTC continues to hold at $30k.
Overnight Data China March Trade – big beat – (USD) Exports +14.8% y/y (expected -7.1%) & Imports -1.4% y/y (expected -6.4%). AUD Jobs beat (53k vs 20k), Unemployment (3.5% vs 3.6%) & CPI (4.6% vs 5.3%) both fell significantly too. German Final CPI in line at 7.8% and UK GDP (Feb) missed again (0.0% vs 0.1% & 0.4%) last time.
- FX – USDIndex declined to test April lows at 101.05 and remains anchored well below 102.00 today at 101.20. EUR spiked to 1.1000 yesterday and again today and trades at 1.0988. The 2023 high is 1.1032. JPY dived from 134.00, tested below 133.00 and trades at 133.25 now. Sterling rallied from 1.2400 but remains under the key 1.2500 once again at 1.2490.
- Stocks – US markets closed lower (-0.11% to -0.85%) as the rate sensitive Tech sector led the declines once again. #US500 closed down 17pts. at 4091. – US500 FUTS are also lower today at 4124 from highs of 4177 yesterday. #LVMH rallied after surging sales in China.
- Commodities – USOil – Futures have tested the $83.50 level today despite official EIA inventories showing weaker demand as a build (+0.6m vs -1.0m and -3.7m last week) for both gasoline and petroleum products was recorded. Gold – has broken the $2020, level again today having been to a low of $2001, and a high of $2028 yesterday.
- Cryptocurrencies – BTC holds the $30k level spiking to $30.4k and $29.6k extremes yesterday.
Today – EZ Industrial Production, US PPI, US Weekly Claims, OPEC MOMR, speeches from BoC’s Macklem, BoE’s Pill.
Biggest FX Mover @ (06:30 GMT) AUDJPY (+0.38%). Continued to rally from under 88.00 on Monday to test 89.50 today. MAs aligned higher, MACD histogram & signal line positive & rising, RSI 63.00 & rising, H1 ATR 0.187, Daily ATR 1.526.
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