Article / 15 September 2016 at 7:03 GMT

Morning markets: Activity dulled by oil slide and Fed/BoJ anticipation




  • Switzerland: SNB policy meeting (0730 GMT)
  • UK: Bank of England policy meeting (1100 GMT)
  • Eurozone: July trade balance (0900 GMT)
  • Eurozone: Eurozone August CPI (0900 GMT)
  • US: Initial Jobless Claims (1230 GMT)
  • US: Retail Sales (1230 GMT)
  • US: Industrial Production (1315 GMT)

Asian stocks ticked lower on Thursday, tracking Wall Street weakness and a renewed slide in crude oil prices. But volumes across the region were low because of holidays Thursday in China, Korea and Taiwan and a long weekend starting Friday in Hong Kong.

The impending Federal Reserve Open Market Committee and Bank of Japan meetings on September 21 are also keeping investors sidelined, pending resolution of two of the issues that are uppermost on investor's agendas these days  (a) when and if the Fed hikes rates and (b) will Japan unleash another blast of quantitative easing and if so, in what form?

Back in Europe, whatever about the level of trading activity, it'll be a busy day in terms of economic data releases and events. Both the Bank of England and the Swiss National Bank are holding monetary policy meetings though neither is expected to make any changes to their current stance.

Elsewhere, Eurozone inflation numbers and trade data will provide some clues as to the state of the bloc's economy. Both will be released at 0900 GMT.

Market signals

Asian session

  • Australia's unemployment rate has dropped to 5.6% in August from 5.7% in July
  • At 5.6% the unemployment rate is the lowest in five years.
  • The AUD sold off US0.3¢ on the data but later stabilised at US74.7¢
  • NZ's GDP grew by 3.6% in the year to June 
  • It is a bank holiday in China today
  • The global equities selloff continued with Japanese shares falling for a seventh day
  • Crude traded below $44/barrel as lower US oil inventories seen as temporary
  • Gold for immediate delivery was little changed at about $1,323/oz
  • The MSCI Asia Pacific Index was down 0.3% in early trading in Tokyo
  • Investors were calm ahead of the Bank of England rate decision.

Forex ahead

  • At the start of the morning session JPY weakened 0.2% to 102.61 per dollar.
  • The NZD was down 0.2% of weaker than expected economic data
  • The dollar USD edged up in early Asian trade

From the Floor

Down under. "Aussie jobs report missed expectations –  the first job losses in 6 months," Moltke-Leth.

Standing pat. "We had a sterling bounce that's fading now, the BoE isn't expected to act today," Hardy.

Get all the latest from Saxo Bank's trading floors in From the Floor, within the hour.

In opinion

The US will have three serious sets of data to contend with today - retail sales, industrial output and jobless claims – will any or all of it make a difference, asks James Picerno.

ASX sputters
The ASX seems to be stuck with a monkey on its back and it's weighing stocks down. Nothing lately has worked to lighten the load, says the Sydney team at Saxo Capital Markets


 The oil market storm rages on...   Photo: iStock

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