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Wednesday November 19, 2008 - 17:50:30 GMT
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Forex Blog - US Market Update

Today 11:47am

US Market Update

Dow -199 S&P -26 NASDAQ -47

- US equity indices are making fresh lows, bringing last week's intra-day lows back into play following record lows in new building permits and the first negative CPI reading since 1982, raising the ugly specter of deflation. Initially Treasury yields rebounded following the CPI data the 10-year yield has since moved back to lows approaching 3.4%. The two-year traded at its lowest level since 2003 before firming. Better buying remains at the long end of the curve though, as curves both here and in
Europe have seen some substantial flattening. Commodities blipped higher post data as well, but oil has since returned to negative territory. Dec gold at one point traded up $30 before giving most of that back.

- In equities, discount retailers BJ's and Ross Stores both reported solid third-quarter results that met consensus estimates while offering come cautious comments on the future. BJ's raised its outlook for FY08 results, and although it also warned that while it is preparing for negative general merchandise same-store sales next quarter, it said it sees overall same-store sales up around 5% y/y. BJ's believes it is capturing a bigger share of members grocery budgets, benefiting form a decline in consumer casual dining. Discount apparel retailers Ross Stores cut its full-year view slightly. Solar manufacturers Trina Solar and LDK Solar both exceeded revenue and earnings estimates by wide margins, but diverged on their longer-term outlook. TSL guided Q4 results well below the consensus view and cut its FY08 guidance on lower shipments. Alternatively, LDK sees its revenue in the coming quarter and the full year exceeding analysts' estimates.

- Major players in the global chemical and semiconductor industries offered negative news illustrating the continuing impact of the emerging world recession. BASF, the world's largest chemical company, said it was slashing output, shutting plants and laying off workers due to massive declines in demand among key industries. The company plans to shut down 50% of its production capacity, shuttering nearly 80 plants worldwide and reducing production at another 100 plants. Interestingly, BASF said that customers in the automotive industry have canceled orders at short notice and noted that volumes are being negatively impacted by increased reduction of inventory due to a lack of credit in customer industries. Over in tech, the Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA) projects that 2009 semiconductor sales will fall by 5.6% y/y, making for the first decline since 2001. The SIA sees 2008 sales of $261B and 2009 sales of $246B. Sandisk cut its 2009 CAPEX guidance to $900M from $1.3B prior. This comes after the company cut the 2009 CAPEX to $1.3B from $3B back in mid October.

- Executives from GM, Ford and Chrysler are testifying (read: begging) before Congress this morning as various government player continue to wonder how, whether or why the taxpayer should bail out the auto industry. Senate Majority Leader Reid believes the Senate can pass an assistance package within the week, while Rep. Frank believes the aid is justified by the industry's impact on the broader economy. Earlier this morning German Solar World offered to buy GM's Opel unit for €250M in cash and €750M in credit, with the requirement that Opel be completely separated from GM and paid compensation of €40K per German worker. Solar World said it wanted to use the Opel facilities to develop high efficiency, low emission engines. A GM Spokeman responded by saying Opel is not for sale.

- The greenback moved lower ahead of the equity open on what appeared at first to be a technical correction or maybe some kind of intervention. Dealing desks later decided that the USD sell-off was just a reaction to the morning's spike in gold and oil prices following the weak US housing and CPI data. GBP/USD broke above 1.51, electing some buy stops, and other European pairs followed. Dealers noted that the five-week euro downtrend line was broken above the 1.2690 level while other added that "real flows" accounted for much of the price action, given that currencies, equities and commodities all seem to be making coordinated movements. In regards to suspicions of intervention, one dealer noted that the USD weakness was complemented by good demand from “supra nationals,” prompting speculation that the moves could be some kind of stealth action to calm recent extreme FX moves. In any case, alleged hedge fund liquidations helped to exaggerate the move.

- This morning
New York desks latched on an earlier report that China's PBoC was considering boosting its gold reserves. Back on 11/13, it was reported in the HK Standard that China might seek to buy gold in a move to diversify its currencies reserves. The article added that China currently holds about 600 tons of gold and might increase this amount to as much as 4K tons. Looking at the big picture, the EUR/USD continues a broader consolidation after hitting lows back on Oct 27 at 1.2330 with 1.24 to 1.2850 seen continuing.


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AA: Major, A: High, B: Medium

Tue 17 July 2018
AA 08:30 GB- Employment
A 13:15 US- Industrial Production
AA 14:00 US-Powell Testimony
Wed 18 July 2018
AA 08:30 GB- CPI
A 12:30 US- Housing Starts/Permits
AA 14:00 US-Powell Testimony
Thu 19 July 2018
AA 1:30 AU- Employment
AA 08:30 GB- Retail Sales
A 14:30 US- EIA Crude
A 12:30 US- Weekly Jobless
Fri 20 Jun 2018
A 12:30 CA- CPI/Retail Sales

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