Slightly Softer Dollar

July 19, 2012

The dollar has fallen by 0.9% and 0.7% against the Australian and New Zealand currencies.  Smaller drops have occurred of 0.3% against the loonie and euro and 0.2% versus the yen, Swiss franc and sterling.  There has been a 0.1% uptick versus the yuan.

Share prices rose 2.0% in Australia, 1.7% in Hong Kong, 1.6% in South Korea, 1.4% in Taiwan, 0.8% in Japan, 0.5% in India and 0.4% in China.  Stocks are also higher in Europe, with gains of 0.8% in Germany and Spain, 0.5% in Paris and 0.3% in London.

10-year British gilt and German bund yields firmed by three and two basis points.  10-year JGB yields fell another two basis points to 0.74%.

Gold and oil prices rose 0.8% to $1583.40 per ounce and $90.90 per barrel overnight.

Japan’s all industry index dropped for the fourth time in five months, sliding 0.3% in May.  The index was 3.2% higher than a year earlier.

Japan’s index of leading economic indicators was revised downward to 95.2 in May from a preliminary estimate of 95.9.  April’s reading was 95.6.

The Aussie dollar benefited from disclosures of increasing diversification into that currency by central banks in Germany, the Czech Republic and China.

Australian business conditions and business confidence weakened in 2Q12 by a point and four points, respectively, to readings of minus 2 and minus 1.

South Korean department store sales were 2.0% weaker than a year before in June.

The Swiss trade surplus narrowed 9.3% on month to CHF 2.25 billion in June.

Irish producer prices rose 0.3% last month and by 3.2% from June 2011.

Italian industrial orders rebounded 1.7% in May from a similarly sharp drop in April.

Yields on Spanish government sales of 2-, 5- and 7-year bonds were higher than at the previous auctions of those maturities.

Euroland’s current account surplus nearly doubled to EUR 10.9 billion in May on a seasonally adjusted basis from EUR 5.5 billion in April.

British retail sales slid 0.1% in June and to a smaller on-year increase of 1.6% after rising 2.1% in the year to May.

Dutch consumer confidence improved eight points to minus 32 in June.  The Dutch jobless rate was 6.3% in June.

South African wholesale turnover rose 1.0% on month and 8.7% on year in May.

Central Bank interest rate announcements are awaited in South Africa and Turkey later today.

Scheduled U.S. data today include the Philly Fed manufacturing index, the index of leading economic indicators, existing home sales, and weekly jobless insurance claims. Canada wholesale sales and Mexican retail sales and wholesale turnover figures are also scheduled for release.

Copyright 2012, Larry Greenberg.  All rights reserved.  No secondary distribution without express permission.


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