US on holiday; Disney deepens layoffs; Singapore production retreats; China commodity prices surge; China targets cold-chain virus spread; UST 10y at 0.88%; oil and gold slip; NZ$1 = 70 USc; TWI-5 = 72.6, bitcoin dives

US on holiday; Disney deepens layoffs; Singapore production retreats; China commodity prices surge; China targets cold-chain virus spread; UST 10y at 0.88%; oil and gold slip; NZ$1 = 70 USc; TWI-5 = 72.6, bitcoin dives

Here's our summary of key economic events overnight that affect New Zealand, with news the bitcoin price seems to be in free fall this morning.

But first up today, we need to note that the US is on holiday, a four-day Thanksgiving weekend. And all eyes will be on the Friday and weekend retail sales levels which will set the tone for retailing through to the New Year holiday season. Of course the pandemic, and the shift to online retailing are both trends being watched closely.

But that hasn't stopped Disney cutting a further 4000 people from its theme park workforce, taking the total reduction to more than 32,000.

In Singapore, industrial production took a very worrying retreat in October, suggesting that the stellar gains in September were not repeatable.

In China, coal prices are surging after Australian imports were blocked. They are up +12% year-on-year to near record highs. This comes at a time of rising electricity demand, not only from rising industrial activity, but the onset of winter too. And it comes at a time, China must make critical decisions if it is to reach its loose carbon neutrality goals. They keep on building coal-fired power plants when they know they should be closing them.

And China's rare earth prices are also surging amid growing demand as the economy recovers and from rising concerns that China could impose restrictions on rare earth exports as a retaliatory measure responding to new US Biden sanctions relating to human rights issues. Iron ore prices are rising sharply too.

Wall Street is on holiday today. Overnight, European markets were little-changed, but London another -0.4%. Yesterday Tokyo closed up +0.9%, Hong Kong was up +0.6%, and Shanghai was up a more modest +0.2% and arresting their prior day's big drop. The ASX200 ended up +0.7% and the NZX50 Capital Index was up +0.5%.

The latest global compilation of COVID-19 data is here. The global tally is 60,642,000 and a +574,000 rise overnight. It is still very grim in Russia, the UK, and Italy with great stress on their hospital systems. It does seem to be easing in Belgium, France and Spain. The number of British cases is about to exceed the number in Spain. Global deaths reported now exceed 1,426,000 and up +11,000 from yesterday.

China is worrying about coronavirus spread in its winter season. "Everything becomes a cold-chain in winter" and their tracing suggests transmission risk via cold-chain imports of food has been their main risk. Winter then spreads the risk.

The largest number of reported cases globally are still in the US, which rose +169,000 overnight to 13,173,000 and at their higher pace of infection. But reporting there will be inhibited for a few days by their holiday weekend. The US remains the global epicenter of the virus and the consequence of a very bad public health response. The number of active cases is surging at 5,092,000 and that level is up +20,000 in one day, so many more new cases more than recoveries. Their death total now exceeds 269,000. The US now has a COVID death rate that now exceeds Brazil at 810/mln.

In Australia, they are not getting any major resurgence. There have now been 27,867 COVID-19 cases reported, and that is just +13 more cases overnight. Now 84 of their cases are 'active' (-11). Reported deaths remain unchanged at 907.

The UST 10yr yield will start today little-changed at 0.88%. Their 2-10 rate curve is little-changed at +72 bps, their 1-5 curve is marginally firmer at +29 bps, with their 3m-10 year curve marginally firmer too at just under +82 bps. The Australian Govt 10 year yield is also unchanged at 0.91%. The China Govt 10 year yield is up +1 bp and now at 3.33%, while the New Zealand Govt 10 year yield is down -7 bps at 0.90%.

The price of gold is has changed little overnight, down US$2 today to US$1809/oz.

Oil prices have slipped today, and have given up yesterday's US$0.50 rise so they are back at just under US$45/bbl in the US, while the international price is now just under US$48/bbl.

And the Kiwi dollar has stayed high 70 USc this morning but has stopped rising now. Against the Australian dollar we are firm at 95.1 AUc. Against the euro we are also holding at 58.8 euro cents. That means our TWI-5 will start today still at 72.6. We were last at this level in March 2019.

The bitcoin price has fallen very sharply overnight after flirting with a record high in the past two days. But is now at just US$16,550 having lost -US$2,350 since this time yesterday or more than -12%. But it is only back to where it was ten days ago. The bitcoin rate is charted in the exchange rate set below.

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We have had 50 mm of rain this week and it's still coming. I will have a problem with feed quality dropping away, grass has gone to seed and this rain will have an effect on quality, I topped about %30 of the farm and hopefully grass will go back to a vegetative state where I have topped.

 I put %15 of my cattle into the auction this week just to make sure I can keep the others pumping, also I got rid of cattle that were not of a type I like, too much Kiwi cow, ( Jersey).  I got nearly $500 more than I paid for them in early July but I get to pay freight to the market and %5 commission, being honest these prices will be worrying farmers, the schedules are still falling and even though I got $950 a head those cattle cost someone $550 in September last year.  I purchased them in July for under $500 so the first buyer made a loss.  No one knows where the bottom of the market will be this year, but it looks to be lower than where we are now and it's a big unknown what Covid will do, at present it all looks to be on the down side.

 I spent an hour on the phone with an agent last night and he is worried about Lamb prices, farmers are getting $110 for a decent lamb  straight off mum but that's a long way back from the price of the past few years and wool is a liability.  This is the time of year when traditionally lamb prices are best as they end up in the UK Christmas market, the other decent market is the Easter market,  the French eat lamb at Easter and the Brits must too. It's not hard to imagine a sub $100 lamb.
  It looks like after christmas this year the sheep industry could be facing an interesting time, costs have rocketed in the past few years, good prices led to higher costs as associated industries climbed on board and then the councils really put the boot in, we often got inflation on farm at %8 and that compounds.  Like I said rates are an issue, roading costs are ridiculous, this model is failing but there is no one with the courage to fix it. Around here people in small rural villages on min wage pay more rates than the average in AKL,  this model is not sustainable and will break. With many farmers facing a $50 to 100k rates bill, low meat prices will  mean many end up paying  30% of their gross income to pay rates. My 250 acres has a 10k rate bill, my insurance and rates are $18,000, I can make $400 a head  in a good year and carry 150 cattle. This year I could end up only making $300 a head or even less.
 This week I am off down south, on Monday my daughter is biking the length of the country with a friend and she's due in Wellington soon,  Guk has got the job of driving the support vehicle from Picton to Bluff ,so if you see a couple of young blondes on bikes with a green ute following, haul me up for coffee or a cold beer. I am visiting a few farms that are trying different  farming systems and excited to see how things look in the spring.
Also I see we have a frost forecast, that would wipe out my regenerative summer crops.

  Russia has a record wheat crop a monster and also a huge Rape seed crop ( Canola) with significantely better yields %6 for wheat and %19 for  rapeseed.

How Russia became the biggest wheat exporter

Take care, Guk

I sould add, in these times I don't look at the price i get for my stock but the margin when I trade down to next years animals. Hopefully in times of ucertainty I will still make a reasonable margin.
In the USA milk production is going from strength to strength, in Austrealia and NZ too, a well respected dairy farmer told me last week that while this year is looking good all, bets are off for next year.

Nice update Andrew - not sure about your comment re USA Milk production however. Why would they be increasing volume?
The amount of liquid milk consumed per capita in the US has tumbled more than 40% since 1975. Americans drank around 24 gallons a year in 1996, according to government data. That dropped to 17 gallons in 2018.

Overall dairy consumption continues to increase in the USA. Increased cheese consumption has been the driver more than compensating for the drop in liquid consumption

Gotcha - forgot Americans put cheese on eveything!

Blimey that’s a compliment. American cheese is like nothing else, certainly not those of other nationalities. But yes whatever it is, it goes on everything especially when you are not looking. Part explains my extra 20 lbs whilst living there.

Good Luck AndrewJ, all food for thought....and it is very Interesting to hear the other side of the Food Chain. It ain't all Rated sensibly by Councils, who want their pound of Flesh. Sheep to the slaughter, us mere mortals. Tax us all till we die. And that you can Bank on.


Aye the issue of local body rates is an unwieldy, inequitable and sorry state of affairs. At the heart of the problem is the squandering of the public purse on grandiose and vainglorious projects rather than attention to basic civil services. Aj illustrated exactly that here with the circumstances of the ill fated car park building in Tauranga. In Christchurch water pipes cannot be fixed, leak billions of gallons, but the council can commit ratepayers to $45 mill of bare land in Central Otago for a pie in the sky airport. Collection of local rates has simply progressed into a wealth tax and the more that is squandered the more it is ratcheted up. The government in collecting 15% GST already have a wealth tax in place as rates sure ain’t levied on the basis of services received. Completely the opposite in fact. This existing mechanism is undoubtedly what whetted the Greens appetite to inflict more of the same.

I worked for one of the power companies. Same mentality as councils I think.
Hammer the contractors on productivity gains to keep construction and maintenance costs down. But look inwards at our own inefficiencies and where costs could be cut?

Hammer the contractors on productivity gains to keep construction and maintenance costs down

Pretty much the case across the contracting/consulting spectrum. Our competitors in the technical services space hire Asian migrants to maintain low charge-out rates but the quality of output is abysmal.
On the plus side, there's decent money to be made in cleaning up after the cheaper consultants leave a mess behind.

Enjoy the trip south, driving the support vehicle is dedication to the cause, what a good dad! Are you heading down the west or east coast?

Should be interesting calling in on the other farms.

I have biked the country up and down a number of times, what route are they taking? Hopefully the Hutt River trail and then the Rimutaka Rail Trail over to the Wairarapa through Wellington?

I don't know, I think she is in Bulls, or left this morning, has limited time off work.

Oh right, North to South. If in Bulls, likely coming down "the bad way" via Kapiti Coast. Biking against traffic on the footpath along the seaside between Paekakariki and Pukearua Bay is pretty horrible, but it gets better with a dedicated cycleway (very thin in places) after that.

Picton to Bluff - I assume East Coast? Can take advantage of the NWers through the Canty plains, I once rode 180km on a fully loaded bike with trailer through there in one day. Took us 7 days to get to Dunedin from Picton with favourable winds. Expect at least 10 if there's a Southerly though... pity she isn't doing the Otago Rail Trail, is brilliant. If it takes your/her fancy and you aren't a fit rider, contemplate hiring an eBike from one of the companies in Middlemarch to make it a bit easier :-)

My daughter is a free diver with a five minute breath hold, she is tough mentally.


I always enjoy your reports from the farm, Andrew - and I say that as someone who is clueless about farming. Your breezy style is engaging and helps those of us with no knowledge of farms to get our head around it all.

Thanks for the update Andrew. Question, do you have to deduct vet and health expenses (as well as the sales costs you mentioned) from your 500/head, is that where you get the 300/head figure. Tough times. The govt is always slamming farmers with extra measures even though you have a lot to handle and despite that farming is the backbone.

No that's my gross trading margin, this year I made 500 but I don't think I can do that this year, I made $600 gross margins in the late 80's when I leased my first farm

Heaps of grass and falling schedules. Rumours of ships being cancelled. Mid december last year we had torrential rain, grass galore. By january's end all the grass was gone, the heat was blistering and the winds were ferocious.
Farmers are quivering nervous wrecks. All bars and restaurants closed in numerous countries. Vegematarians on the prowl spreading their religion. Local trade beef consumption supposedly falling off a cliff. I am ditching everything I can and will sit on the fence for a couple of months. Maybe go to the beach. Bugger farming.

That's why I cashed in some R1bulls only $2.82 a kg but short fat things, may have to move more in a few weeks but they are all 400 kgs

No one wants bulls going into summer. I still have some, but they are beef cross so wont be a holes. Looking at CNN this morning, all the talk is eateries shutting down. As problematic as bulls are the hamburger trade should still be solid, so that will be my direction early next year. I hear Aucklanders meat consumption is dropping, yet we are heading into bbq season. Perhaps the real hardships are just kicking in. Strange times.

The weather maps are very different to last year with some big lows spinning off the Antartic, most of my friends now think there is a lot more going on than we are being told.

here is Phillip Duncan and the rural weather outlook. Strong westerlies next week.

Weatherwatch is a bit of a favorite. Philip Duncan seems to be the most accurate. So we are in for some wild westerlies rather than dry easterlies. (They are dry by the time they get to us) I find his continuous putdowns of NIWA rather humourous. And he is usually right. So La nina is being beaten off by the southern ocean weather. Yay. You do have me intrigued Aj with the comment about your friends thoughts. I can feel a conspiracy story. Pray tell

I think it's just a lack of trust, Covid dosn't make alot of sense to many, lockdowns seen unnessesary and there is talk in high circles of a 'reset'. What does a reset look like, a starting line and ready set go?

USA elections look like a horses butt and they really need a re-run, interesting that the same programs used in USA were also used to game elections in Venezuela and Bolivia.
Lots of conservative sites being locked out of twitter/facebook and youtube, even think tanks like the Von Mises institue. Sometimes things ryme but it's hard to belive the coinsidence of everything ryming at once.

The UK looks ugly, friends there are preparing for a recession and a really bad one at that. Who's going to pay off all the debt?

What are on about - "Covid doesn't make sense to many"? What's not to understand about a highly contagious disease that affects old & young in different ways, with plenty of younger people now seemingly laid up with nervous and respiratory system weaknesses?

"USA elections a horses butt?" They have key battleground states and one guy claimed victory before all the votes were counted in those states - *literally* a case of counting chickens before they had hatched. Votes are counted at a state not a federal level, so a universal conspiracy by the Dems would have to involve multiple different counties & multiple state governments, many run by Republicans, not just one federal agency.

Lots of postal votes because people were avoiding Covid or avoiding the risk of being excluded from the vote because their *single* polling station closed with voters still standing in line.

The UK is ugly entirely because they thought they could ignore the continent just over Channel and reclaim the era of Lord Nelson....or something. Cameron's fault for organising an unnecessary vote and Boris' fault for being an incompetent leader.

I don't believe anything I read and suggest you do the same.

Larry our forbears had many ugly diseases to contend with. We are the survivors. They kept working. Why are we such wooses?

Yes I came across someone a couple of days ago who questioned the circumstance of all this. It does make for a good conspiracy. My trouble is this.
If you dont do anything, nothing will be made so one would think econ 101, ta da, inflation.
On the other hand. If you dont work, no money. Econ 101, ta da, deflation.
What will win out. More stagflation?
Locking everyone in their homes for this seems lunacy. What do they say about crying wolf. When the real thing is on the loose, we may go meh...

Jeepers Belle, friends think the lamb market is going to get really ugly. Hard to find buyers for the heavier cattle and back to falling schedules

Yes I have heard that too. Little lambs struggling to garner $40 store while grass abounds scared the bejesus out of me. Fat lambs (admittedly small) failing to hit the $100 mark.

China is pushing even harder on the CBDC in this COVID season; America now considers it as a national security matter. So far, China hasn't wasted the "good" crisis.

Sadly America is going to have at least 300,000 dead Americans from covid before they can push Mr Big Baby Trump out the door. Trump just can't face losing the election and seems determined to cause as much chaos as possible as the drag him out the door. Herald article:

Happy Thanksgiving...Be thankful you do not live in America, where you are encouraged by Trump to meet up and die, having only killed off 200K+ people in Pandemic fiasco, so he wants it to he can get his own back on Voters, some who finally saw a little sense and not a Twit in disguise anymore.
Ruled by Twits....but not killed off by them Sunny NZ....Yay.
Oh and Black Friday, just shows how much we were over charged Prior...No thanks.
It is great to be alive, but Chance.
Inflated prices, inflated Houses, inflated Ego's...Inflated Interest Rates on them Credit Cards...yet little Interest on yer bleeedin SAVINGS....Duh.!...Retire ORR, also any other idiot, who thinks borrowing till you drop is gonna SAVE yer life....Happy thanksgiving..everyone.???

In fairness the US have really gone back to their roots for thanksgiving this year by traveling around the country, infecting people with a disease they have no natural immunity to.

Blanket anyone?

I prefer beads please - oh and throw in a musket and you can have Manhattan Island (mind you I have no idea what the term ownership means - how can you own land that is for everyone)?

There once was a ghastly proposal by the colonial British to infest blankets with smallpox and gift/trade to the native Indians. There is no record of it ever being actioned as far as I can recall. But squishy’s black humour here does carry a point.

We actually celebrate thanksgiving the traditional American way by inviting some native American peoples over to enjoy a lovely shared dinner, after which we inflict savage acts of subjugation upon them to systematically disposess them of their birthrights like land, food, shelter and the right to self-determination.

Can't argue with tradition.

Today Bitcoin, tomorrow houses?

Paypal is hoovering up 70% of newly mined rat poison. Hard to imagine it will be down for too long.

From my Architect and inventor friend in the USA. Dark rabbit hole, or not?

I'm reading the Georgia filing right now.

The Biden boat is leaking by the first 10% of the read.

There is so much to absorb I'm only up to page 51. I'm high-lighting only the most important stuff & Whole pages are now beginning to turn yellow, so I’m having to stop doing that.

She is kicking ass...then kicking and kicking and kicking it again. Should call BetFair and buy some odds.

Trump has until January 20th. The Supreme Court can move all these dates. Suits are filed in all six states: Nevada, Arizona, Georgia, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin. Powell has filed in 2 states. Trump, Powell, Pennsylvania Senator, Lin Wood, Amistad Project, others. Powell and Giuliani are most dramatic filings. Powell taking the greatest machine, mathematic, tech angle, but both have hundreds of affidavits, many necessarily secret, not included in Complaint available online from my source.


Scarfie for the love of god get off Zero Hedge - it is taking you to some dark places and your hair dye is starting to leak. Its over ..please accept that.

That was his link, not mine.

As I said to Henry yesterday, republicans look to be disappearing down the dark rabbit hole that democrats have been in for 4 years. But you wouldn't write off a successful challenge either, they are as desperate to keep Trump as others are to be rid of him.

How about I remove the ad hominem from this conversation:

There is the filing with the courts, which for some reason has been heavily suppressed on Twitter this morning.

Have a read. I'd love to hear your thoughts. Personally, I think its far from over.

Have a great day mate!

That filing claims that the vote counting machines are fundamentally rigged, based on claims from foreign informants.
If they were able to prove any of that were true, the rational response would not be to selectively remove Biden votes, or absentee ballots. It would be to change the machines and run the whole election again.

The issue is proof and who will invalidate millions of peoples votes which the voters believe were cast in a valid way. Foreign informants - now you just know they are going to tell the truth...(and I am being sarcastic with the last comment).

That is what happens in such a situation. It basically becomes an election run by the military, with people voting in person.

Heres the curve ball, you've got the media and democrats being very pro lockdown. How is an election in person going to work in such a situation, and how would it be a legitimate one? A vaccine. There would be no reason for people not to vote in person. People were celebrating the vaccine when both Trump and Biden announced it. Vaccine before the end of the year remember.

This whole thing really fascinates me. I think people are really underestimating the significance of this event. Do we have a one term president who has lost and is refusing to leave, or has a coup d'état of the worlds most powerful nation through election fraud just been uncovered?

My prediction: Election fraud and overseas interference will be proven, maybe not until the supreme court. Re-elections occur in January, in person, run by the military. Trump wins by a landslide and you will all realised you've been conned. DOJ, FBI and CIA will be cleared from top to bottom in the process. Social media and media landscape will change completely and go back to reporting the news.

Someone bookmark this. I bet I'm right. If not, I will donate $250 to this website and you will never see me again.

Don't put me down, tell me where you disagree. Have a good day all!

Fascinating angle, I'll give you that

Trump wins by a landslide and you will all realised you've been conned. --- you heard it here first

...or nothing substantive happens and Biden becomes President.

I'm not running down Masher's idea at all. With everything that's transpired over the course of this year, its unpredictable to say the least.

That you feel that Trump is the fountain of honesty & truth is all we need to know.

Only one group upheld their "rights" by bringing guns to polling booths, drove cars into crowds and plotted to kidnap state governors.

Thanks to both you and Scarfie, I've now got the actual court papers to read myself. It does seem very odd that MSM aren't the sources providing the links to them.

Give me the original documents everytime - I've always been very wary of interpretations/opinions masquerading as news. Thing is, most people are too young to remember a time before this type of MSM became the standard.

The problem with the MSM is what reading age are they pitching toward. According to this website the average reading level in the US is 12 to 14 years.

From your writing I would guess your reading level is much higher. Please consider that the MSM is pitching what is being written at much lower level and links to court papers would interest few of their readers.

Yes, with a document you can discern what is hyperbole & was is supported with evidence. What is harder is determining the weight a court might give to evidence or arguments, that can be unpredictable & even defy common sense.

I got the dotcom call correct after reading the FBI affidavit.

I'm out doing sport today & over the weekend so haven't had time to read the documents. Maybe next week.

I think this is going to get uglier yet, & there will be a long lasting loss of faith in the process.

Here's John Oliver on voting machines - seriously flawed but unlikely to have turned this election:

I'd go with dark rabbit hole. The summary I read was that the key argument seems to be that the voting machines are flawed so they should throw out all the mail in ballots. I haven't dived into it myself but if that is indeed the logic...

The vote tally becomes irrelevant if they can prove overseas interference.

If that occurs the Department of Defence steps in. Who is their Chief in Command?

This show is nothing more than an effort to delegitimise a Biden presidency. Democrats exercised the same prerogative by instigating Russiagate to damage the Trump presidency. Both efforts damage the efficacy of elections in the US.

And the Republicans tried to claim Obama was not born in the US etc. Both sides have their set of fruit loops and they predate Trump (don't forget the TEA party or the 2000 election). Presently it has just become more "main stream" / visible.

EDIT spelling

In China, coal prices are surging after Australian imports were blocked. They are up +12% year-on-year to near record highs.

I believe copper is up ~27% YTD - general exuberance in all asset markets?

Afterpay's share price. Up 900% at one stage after March. Nobody blinked an eyelid.

Exactly - implicit central bank liquidity backstops and future interest rate cuts discounted to infinity? - LOL

Authorities losing their nerve? - Fed, IMF Sound Warning That More QE Could Lead To "Unintended Consequences"

Can they not just sell it to India, Indonesia etc. who can then ship it (or theirs) on to China? Seems like an obvious arbitrage.

Hopefully all this leads to India's rapid industrialisation.
The country is trying to get its industrial output sorted by upgrading its infrastructure, slapping tariffs on imported metals and ores, and pushing market reforms.
They may have a window of opportunity to pick up a larger piece of the global materials market share while China adds all these unproductive costs on its own manufacturers.

...the New Zealand Govt 10 year yield is down -7 bps at 0.90%.

It was notable that interpolated IR swaps rates against yesterday's three tendered issues decompressed by ~ 10 bps.


A 20% increase in house prices following a global pandemic is not a sign of a stable economy. Adrian Orr has made NZ look like a banana republic. An investigation into this mans actions is imperative and we need to check that he has not been lobbied by the REINZ to create this bubble. This whole thing looks very fishy to me. Especially after he tried to double down on this fiasco with the FLP. He needs to be suspended pending further investigation.

Side note - has anyone here used Sharesies or Hatch? Good platform for a beginner? TIA