24. May 2013 11:59
There is no Canadian data today and just one significant report on the economic calendar. U.S. durable goods orders for April came in well above expectations posting a 3.3% increase. That is more than double forecasts and follows a 5.9% decline in March.
The numbers don’t appear to be enough to drive away the investor jitters that set in yesterday. Uncertainty about the future of the U.S. Fed’s quantitative easing program and sub-par manufacturing numbers out of China sent equity markets around the world tumbling. North American markets all opened lower today.
Bond yields are up 1 – 2 bps.
23. May 2013 12:04
The guarded investor optimism of the past several days has vanished. It disappeared as the U.S. Fed started to talk about tapering off its quantitative easing program. Neither the chair, Ben Bernanke, nor the minutes of the latest FOMC meeting set any timetable for a pullback but markets reacted negatively.
The market pullback was exacerbated by a contraction in manufacturing numbers out of China. The PMI dropped to 49.6 in May from 50.4 in April.
North American equities all began the day lower.
Bond yields are up 2- 3 bps.
Data highlights today come out of the U.S. where housing prices rose 1.3% in March compared to February. The latest federal figures show home prices are up 7.2% y/y. The sales of new homes climbed 1.5% in April. Sales are up nearly 18% y/y and the median price for a new home in the U.S. is $247,000, up 3%.
And the weekly read on the number of first time claims for jobless benefits fell more than expected, dropping 23,000. The four-week rolling average dropped by 500.
22. May 2013 09:47
The Canadian economic highlight for today, and the week, is the latest retail sales figures. The March numbers missed expectations with a flat performance compared to February. Forecasts had called for a 0.1% increase. Falling gasoline prices kept the numbers down. In volume terms retail sales increased 0.7% and were up in six of 11 subsectors.
In the U.S. the main focus will remain on the Federal Reserve. Chairman Ben Bernanke is making one of his bi-annual appearances before congress. Market watchers will be listening carefully to Bernanke, and scouring the latest FOMC minutes, for clues about the central bank’s plans for quantitative easing.
North American equities remained on the up escalator in the early going.
Bond yields are down 2 – 3 bps.
21. May 2013 12:05
The holiday shortened trading week gets off to an international start. Consumer inflation in the U.K. slowed to 2.4% in April, down from 2.8% in March. Producer price inflation was also down in April tumbling 2.3%.
Producer price inflation was down more than expected in Germany in April, falling to a seasonally adjusted rate of -0.2% for the second straight month.
The Bank of Japan is holding its policy meeting this week.
North American markets started the day higher, continuing the trend from yesterday and the end of last week.
Bond yields are up 3 – 4 bps.
The only domestic data of note this week will be March retail sales which come out tomorrow.
17. May 2013 12:05
The leading data comes out of Canada today with the release of consumer inflation for April.
The Consumer Price Index slowed to an annual rate of increase of just 0.4% in April, compared to a 1.0% increase in March. Declining gasoline prices – down 6% y/y last month – and lower prices for passenger vehicles are cited for the slowdown. Core inflation – without food and fuel – rose just 0.1% m/m in April and is 1.1% higher y/y, a slowdown from 1.4% y/y in March.
Canadian wholesale trade came up just short of the mark, posting a 0.3% increase in March. Forecasts had called for a 0.4% increase. Motor vehicles were the main driver so when the cars were parked the increase came in at 0.1%. Sales volumes were up 0.1% for March as were inventories.
North American equity markets opened today the way they closed yesterday – down except for the TSX. With no high profile data today, Wall Street seems to be dwelling on yesterday’s disappointing reports. Toronto, meanwhile, appears to be riding along with rising copper and oil prices.
Bond yields have dipped 5 – 6 bps.
15. May 2013 12:06
Sales of existing homes in Canada climbed 0.6% in April compared to March but the year-over-year number shows a 3.1% decline from last April. The Canadian Real Estate Association’s monthly read on the housing market shows prices climbed 2.2% from a year ago.
The Teranet home price index continued the theme of an ongoing slowdown in price appreciation across the country. In April prices rose 0.2% m/m. Year-over-year growth slowed to 2.0% in April, down from 2.6% in March.
A broader measure of the Canadian economy, manufacturing shipments, dropped for the fourth time in six month in March, falling 0.3%. That’s well short of the 0.5% gain analysts had projected. Manufacturing sales volumes were actually up by 2.0%, meaning producers were taking lower prices for their wares.
In the U.S. the producer price index fell more than expected, dropping 0.7% in April. Forecasts had been for a 0.6% contraction.
North American equities all started the day lower. Bond yields are relatively flat in a range of -1 to +1 bps.
14. May 2013 09:25
This is another quite day on the data calendar but things promise to liven-up a little starting tomorrow with March manufacturing numbers in Canada and April PPI in the U.S.
Markets continued to be mixed in the early going after yesterday’s mixed, but generally down, finish. Investors appeared more concerned about soft manufacturing numbers out of China than they were about better than expected consumer spending in the U.S. Today’s better than expected industrial production numbers out of the eurozone aren’t doing much to shore up sentiment on this side of the Atlantic. Eurozone manufacturers managed a monthly 1% increase in output in March. Bond yields are flat to -2 bps.
13. May 2013 09:25
A relatively quiet day for data today with the only report of note being U.S. retail sales for April. Investors looking for signs of consumer strength will be heartened by a 0.1% increase in retail spending. Analysts had been forecasting a 0.3% decline. Cars and clothing led the way in the U.S., compensating for a marked drop in sales at gas stations.
The Canadian data calendar comes to life on Wednesday with existing home sales for April and February manufacturing sales. The biggest news comes Friday with the release of Canadian CPI for April.
Markets got off to a quiet start today with a pull back from another record setting performance on Wall Street on Friday. North American equities all opened lower.
Bond yields are up significantly by 6 – 8 bps
10. May 2013 06:17
Canadian employment numbers are the key piece of economic data today. The figures for April show a net increase of 12,500 jobs with the unemployment rate holding steady at 7.2%.
The Canadian economy generated 36,000 new, full-time jobs last month – mainly in the public sector – while shedding almost 24,000 part-time positions. The numbers matched expectations for a modest improvement over the loss of 54,500 jobs in March.
North America markets traded higher in the early going today. They appeared to take a breather yesterday, all trading down and ending the day lower after several days of record high closes.
Bond yields are up by 1 – 3 bps.
9. May 2013 06:17
Housing is the highlight again today in Canada. StatsCan’s new home price index for March edged up 0.1% over February. Calgary led the way. Year-over-year new home prices are up 2%, a slight slowdown from the 2.1% increase registered in February.
Internationally, the Bank of England issued its latest policy announcement. As expected there has been no change. The Bank’s benchmark interest rate stays at .05% and it is maintaining its stock and bond purchases at 375 million pounds.
The weekly read on first-time jobless claims in the U.S. dropped by 4,000, falling to a fresh five-year low. The four-week rolling average fell by 6,250.
Markets didn’t react in any material way, but North American equities all started the day lower.
Bond yields are down 3 – 5 basis points.