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Aussie consumer confidence up but fails to lift AUD

Published: Wednesday 11 July 2018

  • UK politics stymie GBP
  • 25 base points rise in Canadian base rate expected today
​​By David Johnson
Now I know that, for some of you, everything written in the next few hundred words will just look like blah blah blah and everything that happens today will be a blurry representation of life because you have one thing and one thing only on your mind. You know exactly what I am talking about. Even this evening’s football match is probably just a distraction from your excitement over the upcoming US President’s visit to the UK; I know how hard it will be but, rest assured, he’ll be here sooner than you know.
Overnight we heard that the Westpac consumer confidence index rose at its fastest pace since May 2016 but that wasn’t sufficient to boost the Aussie Dollar. Fears over trade tariff wars are holding back currencies other than the traditional safe havens of USD, EUR, CHF and JPY.
Meanwhile, the UK Prime Minister is under pressure to change her Brexit plans or face a vote of no-confidence. Sterling seems able to sail past this interminable Brexit dialogue. The GBPUSD rate is in the $1.33 region and GBPEUR is hovering around €1.13. UK data has taken a day off (watching the football and Wimbledon most likely) but Bank of England (BoE) Governor Carney is delivering a speech later today. As far as Sterling is concerned, Carney is about as supportive as a blancmange cake stand, so beware that the Pound may slide as he stands up.
For its part, the Euro is weaker after the ZEW economic sentiment survey produced a startlingly poor result. The June index was minus 12.6 and the markets had expected something a little worse than that. What they got was a minus 18.7 reading and that is very bad news indeed.  Other than a couple of European Central Bank (ECB) speakers today, there is little on the horizon to shift the Euro around, so things may be calmer.
And speaking of central banks, the Bank of Canada is likely to raise the Canadian base rate from 1.25% to 1.5% when they meet today. If you are a buyer of CAD, then trading early in the day may be worthwhile.
Slightly south, the US producer price data is probably the headline for the USD today. The forecasts suggests we will see a fall in the Producer Price Index (PPI) and that weakens the case for US interest rate hikes as far as the Federal Reserve is concerned.
One last thing is that, as caring sharing employers, we have decided to close the office 90 minutes early today (18:30 BST) so that our staff can scoot off to the nearest screen to cheer on the three lions…..or the other lot if they are feeling brave. Let’s catch up tomorrow to celebrate or commiserate as appropriate.

A little girl is sitting on her Grandma’s lap and studying the wrinkles on her face.

She rub her fingers over the wrinkles and then touches her own face and looks puzzled.

“Grandma,” she says, “Did God make you?”

“He did my darling but that was a long time ago”, says her Grandma.

“And Grandma, did God make me?” asks the little girl.

“Yes he did but that was much more recently.” answers her Grandma.

The little girl thinks for a moment and then says, “Grandma, do you think he is just getting better with practice?”

Today's Major Economic Releases

Market BST Data/Event Previous Expected
USD 13:30 US: Producer Price Index 0.3% 0.2%
USD 13:30 US: Core Producer Price Index 0.3% 0.2%
CAD 15:00 Bank of Canada Overnight Rate 1.25% 1.50%
CAD 15:00 Bank of Canada Rate Statement    
CAD 15:00 Bank of Canada Monetary Policy Report    
USD 15:30 US: Crude Oil Inventories 1.2m -4.1m
CAD 16:15 Bank of Canada Press Conference    

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