Here's my summary of the key events overnight that affect New Zealand.
The yield on Japanese 10-year bonds, the benchmark of government borrowing, has dropped to zero for the first time, following the Bank of Japan introducing negative interest rates nearly two weeks ago. Investors are essentially buying bonds despite knowing that if they hold them until maturity, they would come away with less money than they paid.
A former central bank official says the reversal in bond yields was bound to follow the negative interest rate policy, yet it happened faster than expected. He explains a rush by global investors to buy the yen - a currency seen as safe during a time of economic uncertainty - has strengthened the currency. This has hurt the Japanese stock market and darkened the outlook for inflation, cancelling much of the central bank's efforts.
Investors around the world are getting nervous about the world's biggest banks, with banking giants' shares plunging. Deutsche Bank shares fell nearly 10% earlier this week, while Standard Chartered's fell 6% and stock in Citigroup declined more than 5%.
The New York Times explains that when investors sell bank shares or bet against the banks in credit markets, it can be a signal that a period of financial turbulence has entered a more serious phase. It suggests that banks, which are meant to act as the gears of an economy, transmitting credit to firms and households, are becoming more vulnerable to market volatility and economic weaknesses.
Businesses in the US are continuing to reduce their stockpiles of unsold merchandise. Wholesale inventories dipped by 0.1% in December - a weaker result than the Government had expected, meaning its fourth quarter GDP estimate could be revised down.
With wholesale inventories slipping in December for a third straight month, some economists are optimistic the US's inventory cutbacks are nearing an end, and businesses will soon begin to restock empty shelves.
In New York, the UST benchmark 10yr yield has continued to drop today, sinking to 1.74%.
The New Zealand 10-year swap rate closed down 10 basis points yesterday, finishing at 3.2%. Even though this is a historic low, New Zealand bonds are still relatively attractive on the global stage. Portugal and Greece are the only countries in the OECD offering higher yields.
The US Crude oil price has taken a dive over the last 24 hours, falling a couple of dollars to US$28.60 a barrel. The price of Brent crude has taken a similar turn, sitting just below US$31 a barrel.
Meanwhile, the gold price has continued to rise to US$1,197/oz.
The NZ dollar remains pretty much unchanged against the US, at 66.5 US¢. It's comfortably up to 94.0 AU¢, and down to 58.8 euro cents. The TWI-5 is at 71.0.
If you want to catch up with all the local changes from yesterday, we have an update here.
The easiest place to stay up with event risk today is by following our Economic Calendar here ».