Australian Stock Market Report – Morning 3/14/14
By Craig James, CommSec Chief Economist | March 14, 2014 11:16 AM EST
US MORNING REPORT
In US economic data, claims for unemployment insurance fell by 9,000 in the latest week to 315,000. Retail sales rose by 0.3% in February with sales excluding autos up by 0.3%. Both figures were slightly above forecasts. The Federal Budget was in deficit by $193.5 billion in February, smaller than the forecast $212 billion deficit. And import prices rose by 0.9% in February with export prices up 0.6% - both ahead of forecasts.
UK unemployment rates are now tied to the Bank of England governor Mark Carney's forward guidance. Rates will drop when jobless rates drop to below 7% (Photo: Reuters)
European shares fell on Thursday in response to weak Chinese economic data. There was also on-going nervousness about the political situation in Ukraine ahead of Sunday´s referendum in Crimea. And investors remain concerned that European equities are expensive compared with current earnings. The FTSEurofirst 300 index fell by 1.1% with the UK FTSE lower by 1.0%, and the German Dax was down by 1.9%. Mining shares were mixed in London trade with shares in BHP Billiton down by 0.2% while Rio Tinto fell by 0.4%.
US sharemarkets fell in line with European equities in response to weak Chinese economic data. Investors also started to adjust positions ahead of the weekend´s referendum on the future of Crimea. The Dow Jones index closed lower by 231 points or 1.4% with the S&P 500 down 1.2% and the Nasdaq lost 63 points or 1.5%.
US longer-term treasury prices rose on Thursday (yields lower) as investors embraced government bonds in response to weak Chinese economic data. Treasury sold $13 billion in 30-year bonds on Thursday. US 2 year yields fell 4 points to 0.338% while US 10 year yields fell by 9 points to 2.647%.
The Euro and commodity currencies fell against the greenback in European and US trade on Thursday but the Japanese yen rose. The Euro fell from highs near US$1.3965 to US$1.3840 and ended US trade around US$1.3860. The Aussie dollar fell from highs near US91.00c to lows near US90.10c and was around US90.25c at the US close. And the Japanese yen lifted from near 102.80 yen per US dollar to JPY101.59 and was near JPY101.64 at the US close.
World oil prices were mixed on Thursday. While some analysts focussed on weak Chinese economic data, others fretted about potential supply disruptions in Europe with the on-going tensions between Ukraine and Russia. OPEC has raised its forecast for world oil demand for a second month. And US retail sales topped forecasts. Brent crude fell by US63c or 0.6% to US$107.39 a barrel while US Nymex crude rose by US21c or 0.2% to US$98.20 a barrel.
Base metal prices fell up to 1.4% on the London Metal Exchange on Thursday with copper and aluminium leading the declines. But nickel bucked the trend, up by 0.8% on concerns about potential sanctions on Russian exports. The Comex gold futures price rose to fresh six-month highs, up by US$1.90 an ounce or 0.1% to US$1,372.40 per ounce. Iron ore rose by US$4.10 or 3.7% to US$111.50 a tonne.
Ahead: In Australia lending finance data is expected. In the US, data on producer prices and consumer sentiment are expected.
[Kick off your trading day with our newsletter]
More from IBT Markets:
Follow us on Facebook
Follow us on Twitter
Subscribe to get this delivered to your inbox daily
Most Popular Slideshows
- Pope Francis Meets Sudanese Woman Who Was Spared Death for Apostasy (PHOTOS)
- Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17: King Williem-Alexander, Queen Maxima Hold Solemn Reception Ceremony for Victims
- Jennifer Lawrence & Nicholas Hoult Allegedly Split: Mad Max Actor Cheats with Kristen Stewart & Riley Keough - Reports
- Transfer News: FC Barcelona Shockingly Sign Valencia Defender [PHOTOS]
Join the Conversation
- Ebola Virus on the Loose: World Cautioned as Infection Moves; Global Airports on High Alert; Kills Liberian Doctor, Infects American Worker
- Advisory: Britons Told to Leave Libya ASAP, UK Issues Travel Ban
- Malaysia Airlines MH17: Multi-Million Pound Law Suit Looms Over Putin’s Head, Assets At Risk
- Magaluf 2014 Update: Spanish Bar Where Teen Performed Sex Acts Closed, to Pay $78K Fine Along with Carnage Event Planner (VIDEOS)
- Malaysia Airlines MH17: Russian International Condemnation Extends to 2018 World Cup
- Apple iPhone 6 on Two Confirmed Release Dates, New Parts Leaked Suggesting Bigger iPhone to Come
- Xiaomi Mi4 vs OnePlusOne vs Nexus 5: Mi4 is the ‘Perfect’ Phone
- Israeli Women Stripping Naked for IDF Soldiers
- Google Nexus 6, 8 with Android L on Release Date Promises Killer Mobile Device Experience
- HTC One M8 Android 4.4.3 KitKat Update Roll Out, Introducing the HTC One Remix
- Shocking Video of Pedigree Dog Culling in Bali Emerges [Video]
- Sony Xperia Z3 Specs Leaked with More Killer Features Ahead of Samsung Galaxy Note 4, iPhone 6