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Thursday February 19, 2015 - 06:05:27 GMT
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| | Email Asian Mid-session Update: Dollar slides further after Fed minutes; Japan trade deficit narrows further - Source

(JP) JAPAN JAN MERCHANDISE TRADE BALANCE: -1.18B V -1.68TE; ADJ TRADE BALANCE: -406.1B (smallest deficit in 32 months) V -598BE - (JP) JAPAN DEC FINAL LEADING INDEX CI: 105.6 (3-month high) V 105.2 PRELIM; COINCIDENT INDEX: 110.7 V 110.7 PRELIM - (NZ) NEW ZEALAND JAN ANZ JOB ADVERTISEMENTS M/M: -1.1% V 2.2% PRIOR - (NZ) NEW ZEALAND FEB ANZ CONSUMER CONFIDENCE INDEX: 124.0 V 128.9 PRIOR; M/M: -3.8% V +1.9% PRIOR - (NZ) NEW ZEALAND Q4 PPI OUTPUT Q/Q: -0.1% (3rd straight decline) V -1.1% PRIOR; PPI INPUT Q/Q: -0.4% (3rd straight decline) V -1.5% PRIOR ***Index Snapshot (as of 03:30 GMT)***- Nikkei225 +0.4%, S&P/ASX -0.3%, Kospi closed, Shanghai Composite closed, Hang Seng closed, Mar S&P500 -0.1% at 2,093***Commodities/Fixed Income***- Apr gold +0.4% at $1,216/oz, Apr crude oil -2.9% at $51.25/brl, Mar Copper -0.4% at $2.61/lb- (US) API PETROLEUM INVENTORIES: CRUDE: +14.3M (6th consecutive and multi-year high build) v +3.7Me, GASOLINE: +1.3M v +0.5e, DISTILLATE: -2.7M v -2Me - UNG: CME lowers margin requirements on Natural Gas futures; Raises margins for Gasoline - GLD: SPDR Gold Trust ETF daily holdings fall 0.3 tonnes to 768.0 tonnes; lowest since Feb 4th - SLV: iShares Silver Trust ETF daily holdings rise to 10,086 tonnes from 9,963 tonnes prior; highest since Jan 21st - (JP) Japan investors bought net 435B in foreign bonds v bought 200B in prior week; Foreign investors bought net 114B in Japan stocks v sold 477B in prior week ***Market Focal Points/FX***- The yield on the US 10-year note was down nearly 10bps, reversing some of the 50bp rise of the past 2 weeks, and greenback sank while gold rallied in the wake of surprisingly dovish FOMC policy meeting minutes. Some of the market chatter went as far as to opine that Fed chair Yellen waded into the global currency war, with the meeting pointing directly at the US dollar strength as posing a headwind to US exports and growth. External concerns, specifically slowdown in China and global disinflationary pressure, were also increasingly more visible in the language perceived to be rather cautious by the markets. Finally, many participants referred to the risk of dropping the "patient" language as a signal of a shift in market expectations for the beginning of policy firming and were worried that "financial markets might overreact". US Dollar extended its slide in the holiday-thinned Asian session, falling below 118.50 in USD/JPY while EUR/USD rose above 1.1420 - about 80pip loss for the greenback for both pairs relative to the pre-minutes levels.- Electronic trade in the energy markets was particularly volatile after API showed crude oil inventories jumping by over 14 million barrels - the biggest build in years and well above 3.7M expected. WTI Apr crude contract fell nearly 3% below $51/brl before a modest bounce. Spot gold traded up over $15 to $1,217 from levels seen just before the minutes release.- News flow was extremely light in Asia with much of the region closed for Lunar New year. Japan dominated headlines, posting the smallest trade deficit on adjusted basis in nearly three years. Exports were up 17% - a 15-month high and well above 13.5%e - as shipments to US, China, and broader Asia all rose by double digits. Exports to Europe were up by a more modest 7.4%, though still impressive given the economic malaise in the area. Imports were also down 9% - the biggest decline in years - with volume shipments of oil also down 7%. Economist with SMBC noted exports would likely continue to recover in the coming months as US economy expands. Separately in Japan, Sankei press speculated the BOJ may consider formally delaying the timing of achieving 2% inflation target beyond the FY15/16 year, potentially rephrasing its stance with a more vague objective. Outside Japan, Australia earnings season remained active but to the advantage of the bears, with shares of WesFarmers and DrillSearch as the most notable decliners on earnings.***Equities***US markets: - SNPS: Reports Q1 $0.80 v $0.63e, R$542M v $544Me; +5.2% afterhours- MAR: Reports Q4 $0.68 v $0.65e, R$3.56B v $3.47Be; +3.3% afterhours- FL: Raises quarterly dividend 14% to $0.25/shr, implied yield 1.9%; Board approves $1B share repurchase program (13.1% of market cap); +1.9% afterhours- DLPH: Reportedly will sell assets to Mahle for over $700M; deal to be announced within days - press; +1.9% afterhours- ABX: Reports Q4 $0.15 v $0.12e, R$2.51B v $2.51Be; +1.0% afterhours- MRO: Reports Q4 $0.00(adj) v $0.03e, R$2.49B v $2.29Be; -0.6% afterhours- CAR: Reports Q4 $0.23 v $0.18e, R$1.89B v $1.94Be; -0.6% afterhours- ARII: Reports Q4 $1.06 v $1.09e, R$150.5M v $178Me; -3.8% afterhours- SCTY: Reports Q4 reconciled Non-GAAP adj EPS -$1.33 v -$1.26e, R$71.8M v $72.2Me; -5.5% afterhoursNotable movers by sector:- Consumer Discretionary: RXP Services RXP.AU -6.0% (H1 results); Super Retail Group SUL.AU +7.5% (H1 results); Crown Limited CWN.AU +7.9% (H1 results); Skymark Airlines 9204.JP -19.4% (JAL to not sponsor Skymark); Japan Airlines Corp 9201.JP -1.9% (FY15 guidance); Adastria Holdings 2685.JP +7.2% (despite cut in FY14/15 guidance)- Financials: Investa Office Fund IOF.AU -3.8% (H1 results); WesFarmers Limited WES.AU -2.0% (H1 results)- Materials: Metcash MTS.AU +2.3% (acquisition); PanAust PNA.AU -6.6% (FY14 results); Drillsearch Energy DLS.AU -7.0% (H1 results)- Technology: Iinet IIN.AU -10.1% (H1 results); Trend Micro 4704.JP +5.9% (FY14 results) - Source


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