A close up image of twenty pound notes (sterling)

 

  • US manufacturing bounces back after 5 month decline
  • New Zealand volatility overnight tonight

 

Sterling is trading lower against the Australian Dollar after the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) kept their base rates on hold as expected. Threats of lower rates in the future accompanies concerns about the labour market and obvious nervousness about what effect the recent bushfires will have had on the economy.

It is also a bit of a perfect storm for Australasia. On top of all the normal economic pressures, the bushfires, a drop in tourism due to Coronavirus and continuing weakness in the Chinese market are all weighing on the Aussie and Kiwi Dollars.

Sterling trading lower ahead of EU negotiations

That said, weakness in the Pound over the last 24 hours has allowed both Australasian Dollars to gain against Sterling. Sterling gave up nearly all the gains it made in Friday’s Brexit melee during Monday’s trading. Perhaps it has dawned on over-exited traders that the process of Britain leaving the EU is not yet done.

 

British pound coin placed on a red graph symbolising Sterling trading lower

British pound coin placed on a red graph symbolising Sterling trading lower

 

US manufacturing sector rebound weakened GBPUSD

As shown in the currency chart below, Sterling is trading lower against the US Dollar too, after a manufacturing sector rebound. The recovery in the Purchasing Managers Indices (PMIs) for that sector followed 5 months of contraction; so welcome relief indeed.

The USD may also have been boosted by news that the US Commerce Department has finalised its plans to penalise countries that the US considers undervalue their currencies to gain export advantages. China is the obvious candidate for further duties and sanctions but others may be in the firing line.

This afternoon’s US factory Orders data is also expected to be upbeat, so further USD strength is likely before the close of play.

 

(GBP to USD exchange rate – 1 month)

New Zealand Dollar volatility ahead

The New Zealand Dollar is likely to be volatile overnight tonight when the global dairy prices index is published. Such is the importance of dairy products to NZ exports, that this data is very influential. The forecasts are mixed, hence the heads-up over volatility.

We will also get NZ employment data, ditto the hints of volatility. An overnight order to reach currently unattainable levels is certainly worth consideration.

 

Maverick-style

And maverick is an adjective as well as a call sign but it lost one US aviator his job. Lt. Col. Ralph Featherstone was in the rear seat of and F18 fighter jet when his pilot decided to drop to an unauthorised low level flypast, a la Top Gun. It was a celebration of the whole squadron’s change to the newer F-35C Lightning II jets but, rather than being hauled over the coals, Featherstone was dismissed from his role in the US Marine Corps. He took full responsibility for his pilot’s bravado.

It’s sad to hear but (and I know it’s disrespectful but) I have the music from Berlin in my head and the lyrics, ‘Takes my job awaaaaay-a-a-ay’.

 

Aircraft Service Technician responses

Supposedly real answers to service notes passed by pilots to the ground crews.

 

Pilot – Left inside main tire almost needs replacement

Service Tech – Almost replaced left inside main tire

 

Pilot – Something loose in cockpit

Service Tech – Something tightened in cockpit

 

Pilot – Evidence of leak on right main landing gear

Service Tech – Evidence removed

 

Pilot – DME volume unbelievably loud

Service Tech – Volume set to more believable level

 

Pilot – Number three engine missing

Service Tech – Engine found on right wing after brief search