Bell FX Currency Outlook:
The AUD has firmed ever so slightly in quiet overnight FX markets with little movement in most currency pairs.
Australia: The US Dollar was a tad weaker and the EUR gained slightly after comments from credit ratings agency Fitch which said that France would not be downgraded in 2012 and that Germany would maintain its AAA rating.
Oil prices recovered on the back of supply threats out of Iran, however ongoing optimism about the global economy "fuelled" expectations for demand.
WTI futures closed 0.9% higher at USD102.23 per barrel while Brent futures were up 0.6% to USD113.13 per barrel.
Base metals all closed higher on the LME with Chinese metals imports strengthening and optimism on demand came back into the equation. Sift commodities were marginally lower across the board.
Chinese trade data released yesterday showed strong demand for copper and yet while Chinese trade slowed quite considerably in December, the market took this as a positive for further policy easing with many analysts expecting
another cut in rates before Chinese New Year.
Adding to the optimism was Alcoa's better than expected profit report. Not much news out of Australia at the moment, there is the ABS job vacancies being released at 11.30am AEDT.
On the AUD, it is as difficult as ever to get a read on it. Most are predicting it to push lower on slower global growth. There are
signs of an undercurrent of strength lately, but for the superstitious, this is often the case in January! Volatility is ever present, and there's no reason why 2012 will be any less volatile than the last few years.
Majors: The US was dominated by comments from members of the FOMC. There seems to be a potential change of tone of the voting members of the FOMC. Fed President's Williams, Pianalto and George all spoke. Williams was upbeat on US jobs data, added inflation is falling and if so, bring on QE3.
Interestingly to the economists out there, he believes the Fed could announce a new policy strategy and longer term goals more explicitly in the future. Pianalto stated it could take 4-5 years for unemployment to fall back to a "neutral" rate of around 6% and added monetary policy should, ceteris paribus, be more accommodative
11 JAN AU Job Vacancies NOV
UK Trade Balance NOV
US MBA Mortgage Applications JAN
Us Fed's Beige Book
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