- With Japan away for Showa Day, Asian equity markets saw mixed price action amid light trade
- JPY remains in focus after the BoJ meeting, with USD/JPY continuing to fall and trading firmly below 108.00
- Highlights include Eurozone, French and Italian CPI, US Core PCE and Personal Spending, as well as comments from Fed's Kaplan, BoE's Cunliffe and SNB’s Jordan
Asia traded mixed amid holiday thinned trade and a cautious tone following Wall St. losses, where an Apple sell-off and weak US GDP dampened sentiment. However, ASX 200 (+0.4%) edged higher underpinned by commodity strength in which WTI broke above USD 46/bbl. Elsewhere, the Shanghai Comp (-0.3%) was subdued after further discouraging earnings in which PetroChina posted its first ever quarterly loss and ICBC reported lacklustre growth as well as an increase in NPL’s, while the PBoC also conducted a net CNY 290bln drain. Finally, Japanese markets were shut for Showa Day public holiday.
PBoC injected CNY 30bln via 7-day reverse repos; for a net weekly drain of CNY 290bln vs. CNY 680bln net injection last week. (RTRS)
PBoC strengthened the CNY mid-point by the most since 2005 at 6.4589 vs. Prev. mid-point 6.4954. (RTRS)
ECB's Praet (Soft Dove) said there should be no discussion on new measures and focus should be on implementing recent decisions. Praet also added that rates cannot be cut indefinitely and that helicopter money is not on the table, not even informally. (BBG)
Greek Central Bank Governor Stournaras said the country is close to an agreement with creditors and that a Eurogroup meeting regarding Greece will be held on May 9th, according to a Greek official. (BBG)
Barclays month-end extensions pan-eur agg +0.13
UK GfK Consumer Confidence (Apr) M/M -3 vs. Exp. -1 (Prev. 0). (BBG)
UK Lloyds Business Barometer (Apr) M/M 38 (Prev. 43). (BBG)
Barclays month-end extensions sterling agg +0.08
In FX markets, JPY was once again in the limelight following yesterday’s BoJ inaction and was bolstered by safe-haven flows which saw USD/JPY decline to near the 107.00 level, with the absence of Japanese participants contributing to the lack of support. Furthermore, the heavy selling in USD/JPY also pressured USD to an 8-month low, which benefited most of its counterparts, while the PBoC also strengthened the reference rate by the most in over a decade.
Commodities were supported overnight by a weaker USD with WTI crude prices attempting a hold above USD 46/bbl level. Gold (+0.9%) rose nearly 1% as a cautious tone spurred a flight-to-safety. Elsewhere, copper and iron ore prices also benefited from the USD’s demise to 8-month lows, with Dalian iron ore futures hitting limit up in early trade.
Treasuries came under pressure in early US trade despite GDP data missing expectations yet the Personal Consumption illustrated a beat alongside multiple other metrics. However, real money showed real interest at the 7 year auction, with the bid to cover the highest since Feb'14. The ensuing upside in fixed income was helped by a more risk off tone in markets and this was maintained throughout the afternoon’s trade, with T-notes closing up 5+ ticks at 130.00+ and trading relatively rangebound overnight to head into European hours at 130.01+.
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