North Korean tensions simmer, US data eyed

September 27, 2017

The North Korean situation continues to bubble along, as attention turns to data, with the most significant data emanating from the US.

The USD hit one-month highs overnight as investors were buoyed by a speech made by Fed Reserve Chair, Janet Yellen. Her speech regarding monetary policy and rates was seen as more hawkish according to analysts. The EUR/USD pairing has fallen to its current level of $1.1784. It was only a few days ago that this pairing was threatening to break back into the $1.20 region. The strength in the USD also affected a basket of currencies, with the GBP/USD edging back down to $1.3449 and the AUD/USD fell to $0.7881.

The Dow posted its first four-day losing streak since June, ending the session slightly down to 22,284.32 (-11.77 points or -0.05%). The hawkish comments from Yellen may have contributed to the Dow’s flat performance, hampering any gains that may have been forthcoming. The S&P 500 and NASDAQ both finished the session flat, although both ended the session slightly ahead. The S&P posted a 0.18-point gain (+0.01%) to close at 2,496.84, while the NASDAQ closed at 6,380.16, up 9.57 points (+0.15%). European stocks were mainly flat as well, the DAX up 10.39 points (+0.08%) to 12,605.20, while the FTSE trimmed 15.55 points (-0.21%) to 7,285.74.

Gold’s revival was only fleeting as the precious metal was belted again, falling around $15 from $1,312.30 at the time of yesterday’s blog, to almost return to the $1295.00 level we saw on Monday. Gold is currently trading at $1,297.40.

Turning to today and the most significant data emanates from the US. The US is releasing Core Durable Goods Orders and Crude Oil Inventories data. These figures have the potential to move markets if there is a significant enough variance between the forecast figure and the actual figure.

Other data set for publication today and early tomorrow morning includes:

US – Durable Goods Orders, Pending Home Sales, Fed Reserve Member, Lael Brainard, is due to speak

Europe – Swiss UBS Consumption Indicator, Credit Suisse Economic Expectations, M3 Money Supply, Private Loans

UK – CBI Realised Sales

Canada – BoC Governor Stephen Poloz is due to speak

New Zealand – Official Cash Rate, RBNZ Rate Statement