Key overnight events:
- US markets remained shut overnight for Presidents Day holiday. However, S&P 500 index futures maintained gains from Monday’s broad Asian session rally, closing 1.4% higher, while European shares rallied 2-3%.
- Bloomberg reports that Saudi Arabia’s oil minister plans to meet with his Russian counterpart in Doha today to discuss the oil market as pressure builds for producers to agree on output cuts.
- Crude oil futures expiring in March reached a 1-week high of $30.94/bbl earlier today on the wake of the news, marking an 18.8% rebound from its 12-year low last Thursday.
- The European Central Bank will take measures to ensure its monetary policy reaches the real economy if that appears threatened by financial-market turbulence, President Mario Draghi told European Parliament lawmakers on Monday.
- Spot 1.4007
- Retail sales data released yesterday missed estimates and rose at a slower pace in December. Sales increased 2.9% year-on-year in December, down from 4.7% the previous month and lower than the 3.6% expected.
- USDSGD continues to trade around the 1.4000 handle after reaching a 3-month low of 1.3861 last week.
- Spot 0.7173
- In its minutes released this morning, RBA commented that record-low interest rates are underpinning consumer spending and house building while a lower currency is improving firms’ competitiveness. It also reiterated that contained inflation has provided further scope to ease should that be needed.
- AUDUSD failed to generate any major moves following the release of RBA’s minutes, edging 0.3% higher to 0.7177 before paring back gains. Investors will be looking forward to Thursday’s employment numbers for more clues on Australia’s economy.
- Spot 1.3758
- USDCAD fell below the 1.3800 level this morning to a 1-week low of 1.3774 as it closes in on the 100-day moving average of 1.3600. The next support level below is the previous resistance of 1.3457.
- Spot 6.5158
- USDCNH’s intraday low of 6.4866 yesterday was its lowest since 10th Dec last year. It is also worth noting that the low is close to its 100-day moving average of 6.4859, and the support level 6.4852, which is the 50% retracement of the ascent that began in Aug 2015 and culminated at a 5-year high in Jan 2016.
- According to Beijing News, Premier Li Keqiang commented at a state council meeting yesterday that China will take decisive action when necessary as global economic problems and equity market routs create challenges and uncertainties.
- Economic Information Daily reported that China is expected to release a package of monetary, fiscal, tax and M& policies to ensure economic growth falls in reasonable range in 2016.
- January new yuan loans came in at 2.51 trillion yuan, well higher than the 1.9 trillion yuan estimated. Aggregate financing rose to 3.42 trillion yuan in January, a new record; the median forecast was 2.2 trillion yuan.
- Spot 8.6058
- Norway’s January trade surplus decreased to NOK16.9 billion, from 18.1 billion in the prior month. Both exports and imports fell, to NOK60.4 billion and NOK43.5 billion respectively.
- USDNOK rose to 8.6751 overnight, its highest in eight days, as the drop in trade surplus fuelled concerns that GDP growth might be hit.
- GDP data is due for release later today; 4Q GDP is expected to come in at -0.4%.