Here's my summary of the key events overnight that affect New Zealand, with news of some big population changes.
But first, in the US Republicans and the White House called for slashing tax rates on businesses and the wealthy, as part of a new tax plan that offers few details about how to pay for tax cuts without expanding the American federal deficit. Their top tax rate will go from 35% to 20% - if they can get this past Congress. This debate will now shift to budget deficit projections.
Meanwhile, new orders for American-made durable goods increased more than expected in August and shipments maintained their upward trend.
But pending home sales volumes for August fell -3.1% year-on-year and far more than markets were expecting. Supply is tight. As a consequence, prices are on the move up and are +6% higher than the same time a year ago.
China has announced it is capping the population of its capital Beijing at 23 mln by 2020. It is almost there now. It will do this by moving heavy industry out of the city, shifting it to a more administrative centre.
The latest update of the HSBC Expat guide has New Zealand ranked the third best place for expats, behind Singapore and Norway. Australia was ranked 7th.
In Australia, their latest Crane Index has brought some somewhat surprising news. Housing construction continues to defy predictions of a collapse, with increasing residential cranes across Australia, and now at a new high. More new cranes went up on housing projects than were taken down, pushing the number of home-building cranes up to 551 this month from 547 six months earlier. In addition, rising numbers of cranes on hotels, civil and mixed-use projects pushed the total up to its highest since the survey began in 2012, and as strong as construction during the Sydney Olympics seventeen years ago.
That can be explained by the latest population data out for Australia. This rose by +389,000 in a year (up +1.6%), with growth in Victoria up 149,000, and in NSW up +123,000. These two accounted for 70% of all their population growth in the past year to March. There are now 24.5 mln Australians. (For reference, New Zealand's population grew +2.1% in the year to June.)
In New York, the UST 10yr yield has raced higher today and is now at 2.31%, perhaps fueled by the US tax plan and the expectation it will cause financial stress.
The price of crude oil has inched up today to be just over US$52 a barrel, while the Brent benchmark is marginally down at just over US$57.50. Actually, crude oil prices are a remarkable +23.8% higher today than they were one year ago. At some point soon that will feed into inflation.
The price of gold is lower, down -US$2 to US$1,297/oz.
But the Kiwi dollar is also higher. It is now just at 72.3 US. On the cross rates we are also higher at 91.9 AU¢, and 61.5 euro cents. And the TWI-5 index is now at 75.
If you want to catch up with all the changes yesterday we have an update here.
The easiest place to stay up with event risk today is by following our Economic Calendar here ».