Few Data Releases, Firmer Share Prices and Metals, Steady Oil and Sovereign Debt Yields

August 20, 2018

Dollar/yen is unchanged. The dollar is down 0.3% against the yuan but has risen 0.3% against the euro, 0.2% relative to the Australian dollar, kiwi, and Mexican peso, and 0.1% versus the Swiss franc, loonie and sterling.

Equities climbed Monday by 1.9% in Indonesia, 1.5% in Hong Kong, 1.1% in South Korea, 0.9% in India and New Zealand, but slipped 0.3% in Japan and 0.2% in Singapore. Share prices in Europe so far show advances of 1.1% in Greece and Germany, 0.7% in France, 0.5% in Spain and Great Britain and 0.4% in Switzerland. Italy continued to lag behind, as share prices there are flat. Futures point to a rise in the U.S. market.

Precious metals like gold (+0.9%) advanced. So did industrial metals like copper (up 1.8%), but West Texas Intermediate crude oil is flat and marginally south of the $66.00/barrel level.

Ten-year U.S., German, British, and Japanese sovereign debt yields are all unchanged from Friday closing levels.

German producer price inflation held steady in July at June’s nine-month high of 3.0%. The PPI rose 0.2% on month, as energy popped 0.5% higher, while all other producer prices only edged up 0.1% collectively.

Construction output in the euro area was 2.6% higher in June than a year earlier. Quarter-on-quarter gains of 1.3% in 2Q18 and 0.9% in the final quarter of 2017 were sandwiched around a weather-depressed 0.1% dip in the first quarter.

The 12-month rate of increase in the British Rightmove house price index slipped back to 1.1% in August, matching its 2018 low hit initially in January and again in May.

Icelandic consumer price inflation accelerated a half percentage point to 1.9% in July from 1.4% in June. Polish producer prices inflation eased to 3.4% in July from 3.7% the month before.

Greece had a smaller-than-expected EUR 210 million current account surplus in June, and the first-half deficit of EUR 3.8 billion was EUR 555 million wider than a year earlier.

Real GDP in Thailand rose 1% on quarter in 2Q18. On-year growth of 4.6% had a “four” handle for a fourth straight quarter and exceeded 3.9% posted in the year through 2Q17 and 3.6% in 2Q16.

Copyright 2018, Larry Greenberg. All rights reserved. No secondary distribution without express permission. 

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