First Friday of the Month

December 6, 2013

Investors await U.S. and Canadian jobs figures.  Analysts project a 185K increase in U.S. employment.  A gain of 200K or more would goose speculation about earlier Fed tapering.

Ahead of this key release, traditionally scheduled for the first Friday of the month, the dollar is unchanged against the euro and Aussie dollar, up by 0.3% relative to the yen, 0.2% versus the kiwi, and 0.1% against the loonie but off 0.2% against sterling and 0.1% vis-a-vis the Swiss franc.

Spain is closed for Constitution Day, marking 35 years since the referendum in which voters approved the current constitution.

Share price movements have been mostly mild.  Stocks fell 0.6% in China, 0.3% in Singapore and the Philippines, 0.2% in Australia and South Korea and 0.1% in New Zealand and Taiwan but edged up 0.2% in India, 0.1% in Hong Kong and 0.8% in Japan.  In Europe, the German Dax, British Ftse, and Paris Cac show gains of 0.5%, 0.4%, and 0.2%.

Ten-year German bund and British gilt yields are steady.  The Japanese JGB rose 2 more basis points to 0.67%.

Prices for WTI crude oil and gold both have slipped 0.2% to $97.23 per barrel and $1230.80 per ounce.

Japan’s index of leading economic indicators climbed 0.7 points to 109.9 in October.  The index of coincident economic indicators rose 1.2 points to 109.6.  Japanese reserves fell in November by $1.399 billion following jumps of $19.2 billion in September and $3.3 billion in October.  Japan recorded a larger JPY 1.07 trillion customs trade deficit in November 1-20 compared to JPY 722 billion a year earlier.  Imports were up 23.2% on year.

German industrial orders fell much more than anticipated, dropping 2.2% in October after a 3.1% advance in September.  October’s level was 0.3% below the 3Q average.  Domestic and foreign orders for capital goods respectively dropped by 4.2% and 5.8% in the latest month relative to September.

Australia’s construction purchasing managers index increased 0.8 points to 55.2.  For slightly over three years until September the index had been below 50, signifying a prolonged period of contraction in that sector.

The British Halifax house price index went up 1.1% in November and was 7.7% higher in September-November than a year earlier.  That represented an acceleration from an on-year 6.9% increase.  The Bank of England’s expected inflation index accelerated to 3.6% in November from 3.2% in October.

The French trade deficit narrowed to EUR 4.7 billion in October from EUR 5.6 billion in September.

On-year growth in Danish industrial production doubled to 3.1% in October.  Norwegian industrial output record sequential and on-year declines in October of 2.9% and 7.5%.  Hungarian industrial output, in contrast, was 6.0% above its year-earlier level.  Irish factory output posted a 7.6% on-year drop in October, not quite offsetting an 11.5% rise in September.

Swiss consumer prices were unchanged in November and 0.1% above a year earlier.  A 0.1% on-year dip had been anticipated.

Icelandic GDP rebounded from a 6.6% sequential drop in 2Q with a 6.1% increase in the summer quarter.  The turnaround was led by exports.

The German Bundesbank released new semi-annual macroeconomic forecasts, calling for GDP to rose 0.5% this year followed by 1.7% in 2014 and 2.0% in 2015, with CPI inflation of 1.6% in 2013, 1.3% in 2014, and 1.5% in 2015.  Officials at Germany’s central bank have been outspokenly critical that ECB policy is too accommodative.

U.S. releases today include the Labor Department jobs report, personal income and spending, and the U. Michigan business sentiment index.  Canada releases unemployment and employment as well as labor productivity.  The Bank of Mexico is expected to leave its main interest rate steady at 3.5%.

Copyright 2013, Larry Greenberg.  All rights reserved.  No secondary distribution without express permission.

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