Stronger Dollar, Flat U.S. Share Prices and Lower Commodity Prices

April 11, 2019

Compared to Wednesday’s closing, the dollar has strengthened 0.6% against the Aussie dollar, 0.5% versus the kiwi, 0.4% relative to the yen and loonie, 0.2% vis-a-vis sterling and 0.1% against the euro and yuan.

Share prices overnight fell in China, Hong Kong and Australia  but rose in Europe. The DOW initially rose but now shows a net loss on the day. Sovereign debt yields have increased.

Oil and gold prices are each down somewhat more than 1.0%.

Japanese M2 money growth slowed to 2.4% last quarter from 2.9% in 2018 and 4.0% in 2017.

Chinese consumer and producer price inflation advanced to 5- and 3-month highs of 2.3% and 0.4%, respectively, in March.

U.S. producer prices climbed 0.6% on month in March, twice expectations and lifting the 12-month increase to a 2-month high of 2.2%. But core producer prices (excluding food, energy and trade) fell 0.3 percentage points to 2.0%.

U.S. new jobless insurance claims fell 8K last week to 196K, lowest since the week of October 4, 1969.

Complete data confirm the preliminary estimate that German CPI inflation dropped 0.2 percentage points to an 11-month low in March of 1.3%. Core inflation was 1.1%.

Likewise, French CPI inflation dropped to a 17-month low in March of 1.1%. Irish CPI inflation was also at 1.1% last month, and Swedish CPI inflation was 1.9% for a third straight month.

New Zealand food price inflation decelerated half a percentage point to a 2-month low of 1.2% last month.

In public remarks, Fed Vice Chairman Clarida predicted that the U.S. economic upswing, which began in mid-2009, will soon break the record for longevity.

Turkey’s January-February current account deficit of $1.31 billion was 89% smaller than a year earlier. The Filipino trade balance swung from a surplus of $2.54 billion in February 2018 to a deficit of $2.788 billion in February 2019.

South African factory output dropped 1.8% in February to only 0.6% above its year-earlier level. Mexican industrial production was 0.8% lower than in February 2018.

The British Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors house price balance index rebounded to -24% in March, but that was still the second weakest reading in the current seven-month string of sub zero percent scores.

Peruvian monetary officials are holding a policy review today.

A new witching hour for Brexit of October 31st has been granted. British Prime Minister May’s remaining hold on power is thought likely to end well short of that deadline.

Copyright 2019, Larry Greenberg. All rights reserved. No secondary distribution without express permission.


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