Sterling softened a little yesterday after the release of the slowest economic growth data
since 2009 and a further decline in business investment, too. In addition, manufacturing and industrial production data was just as poor. Traders soon realised that they weren’t at all surprised by the data and the fall in Sterling abated pretty quickly. With heaps of uncertainty over Brexit
, slowing growth in the global economy and the Pound itself still being relatively weak, growth in the UK economy
was bound to slow. The fact that it is still above recessionary levels is almost a bonus. We will hear Bank of England (BoE) Governor Mark Carney’s take on it at 1:00pm UK time. He generally weakens the Pound when he speaks, so be ready for that.
Australian Dollar stronger despite data – more volatility ahead?
Overnight we saw a sharp dive in Australian home loans. A 6.1% contraction is three times worse than the markets were expecting and reinforces the dovishness expressed by the Reserve Bank of Australia’s Governor last week. Oddly, business confidence was marginally higher. That, too, was released overnight. The currency markets
tended to favour the stronger business sentiment and the GBPAUD exchange rate
fell a little in early trade. That rate is below A$1.82 as I write. We will see Australian consumer confidence data overnight tonight, so another volatile trading session is likely.
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US markets eager for clarity
This afternoon is dominated by speeches from Federal Reserve voices. Amongst them will be Federal Reserve Chair, Jerome Powell. Traders and investors will hang on his every word as they yearn for clarity over the Fed’s interest rate plans.
A mother’s love
And in the ultimate embarrassment story, a woman in her 50s is being sought by police in Maryland, USA. There are complaints coming in that she has been spotted approaching female students at Towson University in Maryland, showing them a picture of her son and asking if they would date him for St Valentine’s Day. Ohhhhhhh MuUUum!