Bell FX Currency Outlook: The Australian Dollar is slightly lower this morning following falls on US stock markets and a signal the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) may cut the cash rate again in the near future.
Reuters U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke speaks to the Economic Club of New York in New York City.
U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke speaks to the Economic Club of New York in New York City.
Australia: The November RBA Board meeting Minutes released yesterday noted "further monetary easing may be appropriate in the period ahead".
Despite signs interest-rate sensitive parts of the economy are starting to respond to the interest rate cuts since late 2011, the RBA remains uncertain about the future resources investment and the ability for non-mining activity to strengthen sufficiently, to offset the effects of waning mining investment.
Q3 private capital expenditure is released on 29 November and will be important for the near-term interest rate outlook.
The Minutes and speech last night of Governor Glenn Stevens gave few clues about the timing of a further rate cut, other than to say every Board meeting is quite 'live' at present and it could easily be a small accumulation of data that ends up tipping the Board from a "no change" to a further easing view.
The Governor did again repeat the bank's assessment that the AUD was "a bit high". Following on from this, the AUD was slightly weaker, as was the NZD, but mostly against the European crosses, with the EUR reportedly underpinned by persistent demand from an international clearer.
Markets are waiting to see whether euro-zone finance ministers meeting in Brussels agree to a long-awaited aid payment to debt-laden Greece.
If we get a positive outcome, we could see a relief rally in the AUD. If not we could see further losses.
There are no major data releases in Australian today but the ABS will release the 2011/12 state accounts which includes annual gross state product.
Majors: The US Dollar was largely unchanged in muted trade ahead of the US Thanksgiving holiday this Thursday. The strength in EUR and GBP came despite Moody's downgrade of France by one notch from Aaa (following the same move by S&P previously), released in yesterday's Asian session.
A speech in New York from US Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke was noted for its assessment that the potential US growth rate may have fallen in the wake of the crisis but also failed to stir an immediate reaction from markets.
Today in Asia, markets should be relatively quiet, while tomorrow the focus is on China's HSBC flash manufacturing PMI for November, especially in light of the 1.8% fall in spot iron ore prices overnight.
21 NOV AU Sep Westpac Leading Index
UK Nov BoE minutes
US Initial Jobless Claims w/e 17/11
US Oct Leading Indicators
US Nov Unv of M Consumer Sentiment (Final)
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