U.S. equity futures rose slightly in early Friday trading,
following a day in which U.S. markets were closed for the
Thanksgiving holiday. Retail may dominant the shortened trading
session (markets close at 1pm) as millions of Americans head out
to snag deals on Black Friday.
The German business climate index came in greater than
expected, printing at 101.4 -- more than the 99.5 that economists
were looking for. In Taiwan, the finance minister called for
government-controlled funds to be used to purchase cheap
Taiwanese equities, leading to a rally in that market. Late
Wednesday, HSBC's Chinese Manufacturing PMI came in at 50.4,
indicating an expansion in the Chinese manufacturing sector.
Asian markets were mostly higher, led by Japan's Nikkei, which
rallied over 1.50 percent. The Hang Seng was up nearly 0.80%.
Japan's Nikkei continues to strong in the face of a weakening
yen, as a strong yen has proven to be a bane to Japan's
European markets have shifted throughout their session, as
good numbers out of Germany are weighed against the prospects for
Greece. Talks are ongoing among the Troika -- the ECB, EU and IMF
-- over changing Greece's deficit targets prior to handing out
the next tranche of aid.
Spanish PPI came in lower than expected, at 3.5 percent, while
expectations were for four percent. Meanwhile, the French
Business Survey came in better than expected, at 88 (expectations
were for 86). German GDP was reported inline at 0.2 percent for
the quarter, while German business expectations beat the
estimate, printing at 95.2, above the 93.2 anticipated.
The metals were mixed, with gold trading up slightly higher,
near $1733, and copper down around 0.10 percent. Palladium was
fairly strong, up about 0.85 percent.
Inversely, most of the energy commodities showed weakness (as
the Israeli/Hamas conflict winds down for the time being). Crude
oil was off around 0.25 percent, natural gas was down almost 0.50
percent to around $3.88.
The U.S. dollar was weaker on Friday, as most other major
currencies rallied against it. The euro was trading to a recent
high, up above $1.29. The Aussie and New Zealand dollars also saw
strength, up about 0.40 percent and 0.50 percent, respectively.
The Japanese yen traded higher against the dollar as well,
rallying roughly 0.25 percent.
There are few economic releases on Friday. At 8:30am, markets
will gain more insight into the state of the Canadian economy
with the release of Canada's official CPI numbers. Canada's
central bank officials have made comments in the past hinting
that some form of monetary tightening may be necessary, a strong
CPI number may lend credence to that view.
Good luck and good trading.
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