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Thread: NEWs NEWs NEWs

  1. #1
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    NEWs NEWs NEWs

    ECONOMIC REPORTS AND EARNINGS DRIVE U.S. EQUITY PERFORMANCE

    U.S. indices have been climbing steadily higher, driven by an increasingly rosy picture for the U.S. economy, and solid corporate earnings thus far for the second quarter of 2018. Federal Reserve chairman Jerome Powell helped underscore the economic growth in the U.S. on Tuesday and Wednesday, testifying on Capitol Hill and reinforcing both the strong U.S. economic growth, and the notion that interest rates would continue a steady march higher every three months. The Fed chairman’s words got confirmation on Wednesday as the Beige Book pointed anecdotally to solid growth in 11 of the 12 Federal Reserve districts. Only St. Louis reported slight growth, while the other districts reported growth that was moderate or better. Adding to the optimism over the economy has been corporate earnings results so far this quarter. Although earnings season is just getting started, so far data shows that 90% of the companies who have reported have beaten expectations for revenues and profits. There are some clouds on the horizon however, with the Beige Book also noting that the U.S. economy could have trouble making its next leg higher due to a lack of skilled workers and rising raw materials prices.
    Any troubles are likely far off, with the Fed chair seeing no signs of an impending recession, and with Larry Kudlow, economic advisor to President Trump, saying Wednesday at a CNBC event that more pro-growth measures could be imminent.

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    Australia: Domestic and international factors guiding the economy

    Australia, last week we saw the RBA minutes of their July meeting which emphasised that policy remains firmly on hold, although they did contain a detailed discussion of household debt dynamics

    “Again, the RBA said the next move “would more likely be an increase than a decrease”, although they re-introduced the notion that a stable cash rate would be a source of stability and confidence.”
    “However the key data release last week was very strong employment data for the month of June. Australian employment increased by 51k in June, well above expectations, with full time jobs contributing most of the gains.”
    “Although the unemployment rate held at 5.4% as the participation rate rose as workers were pulled into the workforce. This responsiveness of labour supply does show why wages have been slow to respond to this employment strength. And while a strong result, momentum is still slowing from the peak in employment growth seen in 2017.”
    “This week brings a number of important events globally and locally. On the international front we see US Q2 GDP which is shaping up as a cracker given current consensus forecasts of 4%. We also see Flash PMIs on Tuesday, as well as the ECB on Thursday who at their last meeting emphasised a commitment to keep rates steady until at least summer of 2019.”
    “Domestically, the highlight will be June’s CPI print. Our economics team is expecting another benign print, and it is worth noting that for the last 18 months consensus forecasts have overestimated inflation outcomes and inflation remains far from threatening the RBA outlook.”
    “The potential for further tweets from Trump, heightened risks around trade wars and thin liquidity conditions given northern hemisphere summer holidays all adds to the near term uncertainty for FX markets. However, if the Yuan continues stabilising below 6.80, the AUD should remain close to 74c.”


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    US President Trump threatens another government shutdown - Reuters

    As was reported earlier, US President Donald Trump has again threatened a government shutdown in an effort to force Congress to provide funding for his long-promised border wall with Mexico. Reporting from Reuters gave further details on Trump's difficulties in getting majority support for his border control choices.

    Key quotes

    "U.S. President Donald Trump said on Sunday he would allow the federal government to shut down if Democrats do not fund his border wall and back immigration law changes, betting that maintaining a hard line will work in Republicans’ favor in November congressional elections. However, a disruption in federal government operations could backfire on Trump if voters blame Republicans, who control Congress, for the interruption in services.

    “I would be willing to ‘shut down’ government if the Democrats do not give us the votes for Border Security, which includes the Wall! Must get rid of Lottery, Catch & Release etc. and finally go to system of Immigration based on MERIT! We need great people coming into our Country!” Trump said on Twitter.

    Americans are divided along party lines on immigration, and 81 percent of Republicans approved Trump’s handling of the issue, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll released this month. The Republican president has threatened a shutdown several times since taking office in 2017 in a bid to get immigration priorities in congressional spending bills, especially funding for a wall along the southern U.S. border. Trump has asked for $25 billion to build the wall.

    “I don’t think it would be helpful, so let’s try to avoid it,” Republican Senator Ron Johnson, chairman of the Senate Homeland Security Committee, said on CBS’ “Face the Nation.”

    Congress must agree on a spending measure to fund the government by a Sept. 30 deadline. Although Republicans control both the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives, disagreements between moderates and conservatives in the party have impeded a speedy legislative fix."

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    US jobs data in focus with trade “noise” making a comeback

    The US jobs report for July is due on Friday at 1230 GMT, with the release widely viewed as the most important monthly print out of the world’s largest economy since the global financial crisis. Overall, a relatively healthy labor market is anticipated by analysts, with wage growth data again attracting the lion’s share of attention.
    According to economic forecasters, the US economy added 190k positions during July, something which may on the one hand point to weakening jobs growth compared to June’s 213k, but on the other hand still constitutes a robust number. Meanwhile, the unemployment rate is projected to tick down to 3.9% – not far above May’s 3.8% which matched a low last recorded in April 2000 – after climbing to 4.0% in June. It should be kept in mind though, that June’s uptick was owed to a rise in the participation rate to 62.9%, as individuals reentered the labor force. For the record, the participation rate has not been above 63.0% since early 2014.
    Turning to average earnings, which are again expected to be in the spotlight, they are projected to expand by 0.3% m/m – above June’s 0.2% –, something which would maintain the year-over-year pace of growth at 2.7% for the third straight month.

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