rallied into the NY morning with hopes for an emergency Fed cut to restore
confidence to turbulent financial markets and NYMEX oil sinking below $95/bbl.
But there was no rate cut and instead the dollar trimmed gains on subconsensus readings
on the Sep NY Fed manufacturing index and Aug industrial production. DJIA sank
early and got worse, sitting -400pts late, with financials (except newly bought
MER) particularly weak. Much speculation surrounds AIGâ€™s capital needs, with
reports that the government has asked Goldmans and JPM to lead a lending
facility for it. NZD/USD sank from a
high of 0.6710 in early London to as low
as 0.6535, struggling back to 0.6590.
heavily in the London morning as
risk aversion soared, AUD/JPY tumbling 2.5 yen to 84.50 at one point. AUD/USD
hit a low of 0.8012 before finally finding some buyers, trading around 0.8080
from rumours of an emergency rate cut from the ECB and sliding oil prices,
trading a very wide range, from 1.4450 in very early London to a 1.4085
low. But the pair recovered to 1.4300 into the NY close.
financial turbulence sent USD/JPY as low as
104.53, from where it rebounded to 106 but then faded back below 105.00 as DJIA
losses exceeded 400pts.
Fed index falls from +3 to â€“7 in Sep. The EmpireState index
headline fell sharply this month but some of the detail in the report - as
often happens - contrasted with the soft outcome. Orders rose 6 points,
shipments turned slightly positive and jobs were about unchanged. The prices
measures were sharply lower (paid fell from 65 to 45), reflecting the recent
slump in energy and other commodity prices.
industrial production down 1.1% in Aug, its steepest fall since the aftermath
of Hurricane Katrina; prior to Katrina, you have to go back to 1990 to see a
steeper monthly decline in output. The main reason for the plunge was a 12%
fall in auto output, compounded by a further decline in utilities output. But
even excluding these factors, manufacturing ex autos fell 0.3%, its fourth fall
in five months. There was particular weakness in consumer goods, business equipment,
business supplies, defence, construction supplies and energy. In fact only one
market group â€“ information
processing â€“ recorded a gain, up 0.2%. All the major totals are now in negative
territory compared to this time last year: total IP â€“1.5% yr; manufacturing â€“1.9%
yr; and manufacturing ex autos â€“0.6% yr. All up a very weak report which, in
contrast to the national ISM factory survey, suggests the industrial sector is
in recession. Hopes that situation would be averted by export resilience are
being dashed by weakness in the USâ€™s major
western trading partners and recent US dollar appreciation.
labour costs growth slowed sharply from 3.5% yr to 2.7% yr in the second
quarter, despite the job market remaining relatively tight in the first half of
the year. Taken at face value, these figures should be of comfort to the European
Central Bank, which has expressed concern that wages growth might be incorporating
indexation of the recent spike in inflation. That said, they will be suspicious
of the extent of the pull-back and will be looking for possible one-off but reversible
factors that might explain it.
auto sales were a little softer than StatCanâ€™s guidance for â€śrelatively unchangedâ€ť
in July, falling nearly 1%. Their guidance this month for August is for â€śfurther
declineâ€ť in sales, particularly of passenger cars.
choice of -50bp over -25bp last week reinforces our
preference for long AUD/NZD but NZD/USD looks more mixed near term, prone to
Strategy, 0800 922 239
contributions from Westpac Economics
Release Last Forecast
Aus Sep RBA
Board Meeting Minutes
Consumer Price Index/Core 0.8%/0.3% â€“0.2%/0.2%
Jul TIC Data
$bn 51.1 40.0
Housing Market Index 16 15
Eur Aug CPI
%yr (F) 3.8%a 3.8%
Ger Sep ZEW
Analystsâ€™ Survey â€“55.5 â€“53.0
UK Aug CPI %yr
house prices %yr 0.6% â€“2.1%
Manufacturing Shipments 2.1% 0.8%
â€˘ NZ Weekly
Forex Outlook (15 September)
â€˘ Q2 Current
Account Preview (12 September)
â€˘ RBNZ MPS
Review (11 September)
â€˘ NZ Q2
Terms of Trade (10 September)
â€˘ NZ Agribiz
September 2008 (8 September)
â€˘ NZ Weekly
Forex Outlook (8 September)
â€˘ RBNZ MPS
Preview (5 September)
papers/publications are available on Online Research on Westpac
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