Time Out for the Holidays

December 26, 2016

The dollar is unchanged against the euro and Swiss franc, up 0.2% relative to the yen and 0.1% vis-a-vis the yuan and Mexican peso but down 0.5% against the kiwi, 0.3% versus the Aussie dollar and 0.2% against the loonie.

Share prices rose 0.4% in China, reversing an initial sharper slide, but fell 0.2% in Japan and 0.9% in Indonesia.

A very wide spectrum of global markets are closed today in observance of Christmas, Boxing Day or St. Stephen’s Day. The shut markets include the United States, Great Britain, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Switzerland, Sweden, Iceland, Cyprus, Belgium, Austria, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Finland, Norway, Denmark, Ireland, Greece, Poland, Hungary, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Australia, Kenya, South Africa, Lebanon, Hong Kong, Singapore, The Philippines, and Sri Lanka. Open markets today include Russia, Ukraine, Brazil, Morocco, Serbia, Israel, and most of the Islamic Middle East. The lack of market volume limited movement.

Corporate service prices in Japan rose only 0.1% in November, causing the 12-month rate of increase to dip unexpectedly to 0.3% from 0.5% the month before.

Japan’s October index of leading economic indicators was revised down 0.2 points to 100.8, still a two-month high after printing at 100.0 in September and 100.5 in August. The index of coincident economic indicators was 113.5, a 12-month high, warranting a trend designation of “improving.” The index of lagging economic indicators fell 0.7 points to a 2-month low of 113.2.

Published minutes from the November 1 Bank of Japan meeting reflected some disagreement over a policy that now focuses on target interest rate levels for both overnight deposits and the 10-year Japanese Government Bond yield yet also retains a quantitative element of 80 trillion JGBs to be purchased annually.

The Bank of Israel kept  its key interest rate at 0.10%, its level since a 15-basis point cut in February of 2015. The interest rate had earlier been reduced 75 basis points each in 2011, 2012, 2013, and 2014.

Internal political frictions in Israel intensified in the wake of the U.N. resolution condemning ongoing settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

China’s government is enacting more measures to restrain the hot property market.

Indian Prime Minister Modi is considering an increase in taxation on earnings from equity holdings.

Some markets will continue to be closed on Tuesday, such as Australia, Canada, Britain, Hong Kong, and New Zealand.

Copyright 2016, Larry Greenberg. All rights reserved. No secondary distribution without express permission.


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