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  1. #451
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    Market Review – Fundamental Perspective March 31 , 2016

    EUR/USD extended gains on Wednesday from the previous session as currency traders continued to digest extremely dovish comments from Janet Yellen, which provided strong indications that the Federal Reserve could push back the timing of its next interest rate hike beyond the first half of the year. With one trading day left in March, the dollar is on pace for its worst monthly performance in more than five years. As a result, the euro has surged more than 4% against its American counterpart during that span and is up sharply from its level of 1.0860 at the start of the year. Investors continued to react to Yellen's remarks on Tuesday, when the Fed chair emphasized that any rate hikes from the Fed will likely take place in a gradual manner unless considerable global and financial risks recede in the near-term future. Yellen's comments contradict the hawkish positions of four of her colleagues on the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC), which suggested last week that the U.S. Central Bank should approve up to three rate hikes this year. While Yellen acknowledged that the U.S. economy has demonstrated remarkable resiliency as the labor market continues to flourish, she expressed significant concern regarding soft manufacturing and export levels, as well as declining capital expenditures. Notably, Yellen cited research from Federal Reserve of Chicago president Charles Evans on the policy direction that should be undertaken by the Fed in periods of increased uncertainty when short-term rates remain low. On Wednesday, Evans reiterated that he expects the Fed to raise interest rates as much as two times this year, with an April rate hike likely off the table. Much like Yellen, Evans is cautious of lifting rates too quickly as inflation in the euro zone and elsewhere remains stubbornly low.



  2. #452
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    Market Review – Fundamental Perspective April 1 , 2016

    EUR/USD surged to fresh 5-month highs on Thursday, extending gains from the previous three sessions, as the euro completed its best quarter against the dollar in five years. For the quarter, the euro soared by more than 4.75% against its American counterpart, building steam over the last week amid extremely dovish indications from Janet Yellen on a delayed interest rate hike by the Federal Reserve. On Friday, the second quarter will kick off with March's critical U.S. jobs report, which could provide key insight into the Federal Open Market Committee's (FOMC) decision-making process when it meets next in late-April. Earlier this week, Yellen noted that the U.S. economy has displayed remarkable resiliency as the labor market continues to exhibit dramatic improvements. Analysts expect monthly nonfarm payrolls to increase by 210,000 for the month, while the unemployment rate remains steady at 4.9%. In February, U.S. non-farm payrolls shot up by 240,000, pushing the three-month average above 225,000. While the headline unemployment rate remained at eight-year lows last month, economists were also encouraged by a 0.2% decline in U-6 unemployment, a broader gauge of the employment situation nationwide. The U-6 rate, which measures the level of workers marginally attached to the labor markets and no longer actively looking for a job, stood at 9.7% in February. Analysts will also keep a close eye on monthly wage gains after average hourly earnings slumped by 0.1% a month earlier. Also on Thursday, Federal Reserve of Chicago president Charles Evans indicated that he could support a June interest rate hike with sufficient improvements in the economy, one day after strongly hinting that it could be premature to raise short-term rates in April. Any rate hikes by the Fed this year are viewed as bullish for the dollar, as foreign investors pile into the greenback in order to capitalize on higher yields.



  3. #453
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    Market Review – Fundamental Perspective April 4 , 2016

    A strong U.S. jobs report for March, which along with a rebound in wages underscored the economy's resilience, did little to revive projections the Fed might consider accelerating interest rate cuts. Yellen's recent comments that slowing world growth and weak oil prices posed a downside risk for the U.S. economy further cooled any projections the central bank could hike rates again as soon as June. The Fed raised rates in December for the first time in nearly a decade, but officials last month downgraded their economic growth expectations and forecast only two more rate hikes for 2016. Yellen is due to take part in a discussion with former Fed Chair Ben Bernanke on Thursday. For now it will be up to other central banks -- among them Australia's, Poland's and India's -- to consider policy changes, with rate decisions scheduled for the coming days. The first two are expected to keep rates steady at record lows, while India is seen cutting them at its policy review on Tuesday as inflation falls. In China, an update on foreign exchange reserves, expected on Thursday, should show a moderation in the declines noted in recent months when the central bank stepped up efforts to prop up the yuan and dump the dollar to stem capital outflows. Euro area annualized inflation picked up slightly in March, to -0.1 percent from -0.2 percent a month earlier, though it remains well off the ECB's target of nearly 2 percent, raising pressure on the central bank to leave the door open to further stimulus.



  4. #454
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    Market Review – Fundamental Perspective April 5 , 2016

    The dollar edged lower on Monday on contradictory views of prospects for an increase in U.S. interest rates. A usually dovish U.S. central banker, Boston Federal Reserve President Eric Rosengren, said it was "surprising" that futures markets currently imply only one or no interest-rate hikes this year, a prediction he said could prove "too pessimistic." Investors have been trying to reconcile conflicting statements from U.S. Federal Reserve officials in recent weeks since the central bank issued its policy statement on March 16. Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen said last week the central bank would proceed cautiously in raising rates, in contrast to more hawkish comments from other Fed officials. The apparent lack of cohesion has left investors uncertain in an environment of mixed economic data. New orders for U.S. factory goods fell in February and business spending on capital goods was much weaker than initially thought, the latest sign first-quarter economic growth remained sluggish. The Dow Jones industrial average fell 55.75 points, or 0.31 percent, to 17,737, the S&P 500 lost 6.65 points, or 0.32 percent, to 2,066.13 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 22.75 points, or 0.46 percent, to 4,891.80. U.S. crude settled off 3 percent at $35.70 as a global glut seemed likely to continue. Iran will raise its crude output and exports until it reaches pre-sanction levels, the semi-official Mehr news agency quoted Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh as saying. Prices have fallen from above $100 a barrel since mid-2014 on a supply glut, bottoming at $27.10 in late January. Brent topped $42.50 last month in anticipation of agreement among producers to freeze output.



  5. #455
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    Market Review – Fundamental Perspective April 7 , 2016

    Oil prices rose 5 percent on Wednesday, their biggest advance in three weeks, after the U.S. government reported a surprise draw in domestic crude stockpiles versus market expectations for a new record high. Minutes from the Federal Reserve's latest policy meeting indicating no rate hikes in April also weakened the U.S. currency, making dollar-denominated oil more attractive to those holding the euro and other currencies. After hitting one-month lows a day earlier, oil prices rallied by as much as $2 a barrel after the Energy Information Administration (EIA) said crude stockpiles dropped by 4.9 million barrels last week from lower imports and a continued ramp up in refinery runs. U.S. crude's front-month contract settled up $1.86 at $37.75 a barrel. It rallied to $37.90 earlier, after falling to $35.24 a day ago, its lowest since March 4. The 5.2 percent gain was the biggest in a day since March 16. Wednesday's oil rally signaled a sentiment shift after last week's 7 percent drop in U.S. futures and 4 percent in Brent amid worries the global glut in crude was growing again while producing countries' plans to freeze output was failing. U.S. stocks jumped on Wednesday, bolstered by gains in healthcare shares after the collapse of the $160 billion merger of Pfizer and Allergan, and by a rise in energy shares. The Dow Jones industrial average was up 112.73 points, or 0.64 percent, to 17,716.05, the S&P 500 had gained 21.49 points, or 1.05 percent, to 2,066.66 and the Nasdaq Composite had added 76.78 points, or 1.59 percent, to 4,920.72. Investors will soon turn their attention to first-quarter S&P 500 earnings, which are estimated to be down 7.4 percent from a year ago.



  6. #456
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    Market Review – Fundamental Perspective April 8 , 2016

    The dollar continued to slump against the yen on Thursday expectations the Bank of Japan was unlikely to intervene with more policy measures, while global growth concerns knocked down equities. Investors were set to monitor an appearance by Janet Yellen at 5:30 p.m. EDT in a conversation with former U.S. Federal Reserve chairmen for any clues of when the Fed may hike rates again. On Wednesday, minutes from the most recent meeting indicated the central bank is unlikely to raise interest rates before June, as a number of policymakers argued headwinds to growth would probably persist. A cautious Fed and concerns about global growth sent the dollar to a 17-month low of 107.67 against the yen. An optimistic economic outlook from the BOJ also diminished expectations the central bank would take additional monetary easing steps. The dollar was last down 1.2 percent against the yen at 108.44, its biggest daily percentage drop in two months. The decline put the dollar's losses against the yen at nearly 10 percent for the year. The U.S. dollar rally that began in mid-2014 has nearly run its course and will only gain slightly over the coming year, according ta a poll of strategists who said risks to their forecasts are tilted more to the downside. The concerns over debt and growth-related risks to companies worldwide, particularly in developing economies, were also visible in minutes of the European Central Bank's March policy meeting. The lower dollar and growth concerns boosted demand for safe-haven assets such as gold and U.S. Treasuries. Gold was up 1.5 percent at $1,240.21 an ounce after hitting a two-week high of $1.243.50. U.S. crude settled off 1.3 percent to $37.26 a barrel while Brent settled 1 percent lower to $39.43 a barrel.



  7. #457
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    Market Review – Fundamental Perspective April 11 , 2016

    Canada’s dollar surged the most in three weeks after employers added more jobs in March than economists forecast, fanning speculation the Bank of Canada will refrain from cutting interest rates further. The loonie, as the Canadian dollar is known for the image of the aquatic bird on the C$1 coin, gained 1.2 percent to C$1.2988 per U.S. dollar at 5 p.m. in Toronto after Statistics Canada reported that employment increased by 40,600 in March after falling 2,300 the previous month. The job gain exceeded all 21 economist forecasts in a Bloomberg News survey with a median estimate of 10,000 new posts. One loonie buys about 77 U.S. cents. The loonie has rallied 6.6 percent against the dollar in 2016 amid signs the economy is weathering a plunge in the price of oil, a key export. The currency slumped 16 percent in 2015 as Canada’s economy struggled to shift toward manufacturing after a commodity rout led the Bank of Canada to cut the key interest rate twice last year. Strong employment numbers decrease the outlook for another cut at the bank’s April 13 meeting. The jobless rate declined to 7.1 percent from 7.3 percent. Speculators are bullish on the Canadian currency for the first time since May.
    Japan’s 10-year sovereign note yielded minus 0.085 percent on Friday in Tokyo, from a record minus 0.135 percent reached March 18. The yield on the two-year security fell to minus 0.245 percent Friday, half a basis point shy of its all-time low. The yen strengthened to 107.67 per dollar Thursday, a level unseen since before BOJ Governor Haruhiko Kuroda announced an expansion of his quantitative-and-qualitative easing program on Oct. 31, 2014. It closed at 108.07 on Friday in New York, competing a 3.4 percent weekly climb that was its steepest in two months.



  8. #458
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    Market Review – Fundamental Perspective April 12 , 2016

    The yen halted a seven-day gain versus the dollar as an advance in Asian stocks sapped demand for safer assets. Japan’s currency fell against all its 16 major peers before a meeting of central bankers and finance ministers from the Group of 20 this week. The yen surged to the strongest in 17 months against the dollar on Monday as Eisuke Sakakibara, the former Japanese Finance Ministry official, said it may appreciate to 105 in the next few months. The yen has rallied despite rhetoric from officials in the past week aimed at restraining its advance. The yen weakened 0.1 percent to 108.09 per dollar as of 9:49 a.m. in Tokyo after appreciating to 107.63 on Monday, the strongest level since October 2014. The seven-day advance through Monday was the longest since September 2012. Japan’s currency fell 0.2 percent to 123.23 per euro. The MSCI Asia Pacific Index of shares gained 0.4 percent and Japan’s Topix index jumped 1 percent. S&P 500 futures were little changed early Tuesday, following the U.S. benchmark’s 0.3 percent retreat. The index reversed a climb of as much as 0.8 percent Monday as consumer and health-care stocks led declines. Gold advanced to the highest level in three weeks as a slump in the dollar boosted demand for alternative assets. Bullion for immediate delivery rose as much as 0.2 percent to $1,260.06 an ounce, the highest price since March 22, after climbing 1.4 percent on Monday, according to Bloomberg generic pricing. It traded at $1,255.65 at 9:09 a.m. in Singapore. Gold has rallied in 2016 as investors scaled back projections for further U.S. rate rises, hurting the greenback. On Monday, the Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index, which tracks the currency versus 10 peers, tumbled in to its lowest level since June.


    Last edited by PCMNewsdesk; 04-12-2016 at 12:07 PM.

  9. #459
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    Market Review – Fundamental Perspective April 15 , 2016

    The U.S. currency, down 4.2 percent this year, inched higher Thursday following its biggest one-day gain in three weeks as central bankers abroad seek to limit further gains in their currencies versus the greenback. Singapore unexpectedly moved to a neutral policy of zero percent appreciation in the exchange rate this week, while the Bank of Canada has warned that the loonie’s more-than-10 percent gain since the middle of January is starting to hurt the economy, and Japanese officials are trying to talk down the yen, the best performing major currency this month. This year’s dollar weakness, fueled by cautious comments from the Federal Reserve regarding the pace of rate increases in the U.S., poses a problem for overseas central banks, which favor a stronger greenback to enhance the international competitiveness of domestic companies. Atlanta Fed President Dennis Lockhart said Thursday that patience on U.S. rates is warranted. The dollar was little changed as of 8:20 a.m. in Tokyo Friday after advancing less than 0.1 percent to $1.1268 per euro in New York. Bloomberg’s dollar index, which tracks the greenback versus 10 peers, was unchanged after gaining 0.1 percent Thursday. The currency was at 109.37 yenfrom 109.40.
    The pound fell for a second day against the dollar as the Bank of England left its key interest rate at a record-low 0.5 percent. Investors may also look to whether officials discussed a looser monetary policy to counter the potential economic pain of Britain voting to quit the European Union in a June referendum.



  10. #460
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    Market Review – Fundamental Perspective April 19 , 2016

    The dramatic drop in the price of oil since 2014 has delivered only a muted boost to the U.S. economy, but that could change if households start figuring cheap oil is here to stay. That conclusion, in research published Monday by the San Francisco Federal Reserve Bank, suggests that the longer the price of oil stays low, the better the news is for a recovery that has been moderate at best. That's significant for a central bank that is seeking evidence that the economy is strong enough for it to continue to raise interest rates from their current level of 0.25 percent to 0.5 percent. A recent rebound in oil and signs that the U.S. economy is slowly improving have helped stocks rally from a steep selloff earlier this year that had pushed the S&P 500 down as much as 10.5 percent. Helped as well by a U.S. Federal Reserve showing little eagerness to raise interest rates, the index is now up 2 percent in 2016 and only about 2 percent short of its all-time high. The Dow breached 18,000 Monday for the first time since July 21. But Wall Street remains extremely cautious about first-quarter reports, many of which flow in this week. Earnings of S&P 500 companies are seen falling 7.7 percent on average, with the energy sector weighing heavily. During the session, the Dow Jones industrial average rose 0.6 percent to end the day at 18,004.16 points and the S&P 500 gained 0.65 percent to 2,094.34. The Nasdaq Composite added 0.44 percent to 4,960.02. Crude oil ended well off the day's lows, however, with a strike in Kuwait slashing the country's oil output by more than half.
    Brent crude LCOc1 settled down 19 cents, or 0.4 percent, at $42.91 a barrel, after falling $3 earlier in the session, while U.S. WTI crude CLc1 closed down 58 cents, or 1.4 percent, at $39.78 a barrel, after hitting $37.61 earlier.



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