19 September 2014
# Scottish Independence Vote Results
# NZ Visitor Arrivals
# NZ Credit Card Spending
# U.S. CB Leading Index
# NZ General Election
# European stocks surged following the Fed’s commitment to keep rates low for a ‘considerable time’ and as the introduction of the long awaited ECB LTRO facility reassured investors. The pan-European Stoxx600 ended up 0.98%. Similarly U.S. stocks pushed higher extending the Fed inspired gains of yesterday. Both the Dow and S&P hit record intraday highs with the big board closing up 0.49%.
# The initial take up of the ECB’s special lending facility, the LTRO, was less than expected at 82.6bln versus a 150bln forecast. The weaker draw by banks implies the central bank will have a tougher time stimulating the economic zone mired in a low growth, low inflation environment.
# U.S. Housing Starts disappointed falling 14.6% in August when a more mild 5.6% fall was expected. The result does appear to have a bit of payback in it after a huge surge in July and leaves the sector in a broadly positive frame with a 14% increase on a year ago.
# The U.S. Philadelphia Fed survey remained generally upbeat albeit that the headline number fell from 28.0 to 22.5. The prior reading was the highest since March 2011 and what’s more the survey found that nearly 44% of the firms expect growth in their employment levels over the next six months, compared with 37% who in August were predicting future hiring.
# The news was better on the employment report however, with the Weekly Jobless Claims figure moving down to a 14 year low. Initial jobless claims tumbled to 280,000, a decrease of 36,000 from the previous week's revised level of 316,000. Economists had been expecting jobless claims to edge down to 305,000 from the 315,000 originally reported for the previous week. With the much bigger than expected decrease, jobless claims fell to their lowest level since hitting 279,000 in the week ended July 19th, which was the lowest since May of 2000.
# The USD was broadly weaker led by a resurgent the GBP which appears to be anticipating a ‘no’ vote. The USD move lower was not before it pushed to new 6 year highs against the JPY, attempting but coming up short of knocking out option barriers at 109.00.
# The U.S. Federal Reserve estimates that U.S households net worth rose US$1.4 trln in Q2.
# In a nod to the growing dangers of a bubble in U.S. auto financing the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has put forward a plan to begin supervising the finance units of major car companies, overseeing the 38 largest nonbank lenders in the automotive industry. Under the plan, the regulator will scrutinize whether nonbank car-loan providers are using deceptive tactics in marketing loans and following debt-collection laws.
# On the eve of what is likely to be the world’s biggest ever IPO, Alibaba announced the offering price at US$68.00, at the top end of the expected range.
# France’s Hollande it would be wrong for France to rush into rapid deficit reduction in current economic environment, doesn’t know what ratings agency Moody’s will do on France’s rating Friday.
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