US job openings at 13 year high; US budget deficit shrinks fast; German confidence withers; another El Nino warning; Aussies go fixed; UST 10yr 2.43%; NZ$1 = US$0.844, TWI = 79.2

Here's my summary of the key news overnight in 90 seconds at 9 am, including news of a worrying fall in German confidence.

But first, job openings rose in the US in June to the highest level since 2001, firming up their labour market picture for the second half of the year. Faster wage growth is now expected.

The American budget deficit so far this fiscal year is almost 25% lower than it was a year ago as their stronger economy raises taxes almost seven times faster than spending. The US$460 billion deficit from October through July compared with a US$607 billion gap in the same period a year earlier. That's about 3% of GDP. In July, the US federal government posted a US$95 billion deficit, US$3 billion less that the same month a year ago.

In late trade on Wall Street today, American stocks fell with the euro as German confidence declined more than economists forecast amid continuing concerns over conflict in both the Ukraine and the Middle East.

The fall in German prospects had an immediate knock-on effect on a number of its smaller trading partners. Europe faces severe challenges if the German engine starts spluttering. Some say a Japanese-style deflationary period is a high risk now.

In Australia, their official weather forecaster is again saying an El Niño weather pattern might be building. This comes after it admitted an earlier forecast was inaccurate. But another El Niño is due and will happen sometime.

Staying in Australia, their home owners seem to be finally attracted to fixed interest rate contracts. A growing number of borrowers are moving to lock in fixed-rate mortgages over longer terms, after banks slashed rates to record lows last month.

UST 10yr yields are unchanged at 2.43%. The US oil price is stable at under US$98/barrel, Brent fell and is now below US$103/barrel. Gold also fell and is now at US$1,309/oz.

Following yesterday's weaker than expected REINZ data our currency is down slightly, especially against the Aussie. We are at 84.4 USc, back to 91.0 AUc, and the TWI is now at 79.2. 

If you want to catch up with all the changes yesterday we have an update here.

The easiest place to stay up with today's event risk is by following our Economic Calendar here »

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Fixed mortgages in Australia for about 4.8%.   

That's nailed it.

Yep, the need for a powerful well funded guild (union) is ever present. The nonsense peddled by corporates claiming they are an unnecessary hindrance needs to be put out with the rest of the rubbish.

I was in Germany last week - 12 euros for damn awful bland pad thai.
No wonder the people are withering, they need more immigration, like NZ.