Here's our summary of key events over the weekend that affect New Zealand, with news factory data worldwide seems to be trending down.
But first, American jobs growth surged, with employers hiring +304,000 new workers in January, the most in 11 months. But the number of people in part-time work rose by about +500,000 with an odd strong post-holiday boost in warehouse and delivery jobs. Their very low participation rate edged up fractionally and the larger workforce caused their jobless rate to rise to 4.0%. Still, this was regarded as a very good result by market analysts.
But that data is at odds with another consumer sentiment survey that recorded a sharp drop-off in consumer confidence. The latest level is still positive and not yet in worrying territory, but like other such surveys it indicates American consumers are not as confident as they once were. In fact, these latest readings are the lowest in two years.
Around the world there were a slew of factory PMIs released over the weekend. There were two in the US. The Markit one recorded a flat-lining. The ISM one was slightly more positive, especially for new orders. Both indicate a moderate expansion in the American factory sector is continuing. The one in Canada's factory PMI was a little weaker. On the other hand, Mexico's PMI picked up in January after flirting with a contraction at the end of 2018.
In China, the Caixin factory PMI fell further to 48.3 in January, the deepest contraction since February 2016. The subindex for new orders dipped further as the screws tighten across their manufacturing sector.
China is now on its week-long Spring Festival holiday and there will be little news from there, although the trade talks in Washington continue and both side say they are 'positive'. But analysts remain deeply sceptical that a deal can be secured by March 1, when American tariffs on Chinese goods are set to rise. Insiders see no big breakthrough imminent. However, an extension seems on the cards if the timing gets close - an this is probably the Chinese strategy.
But that has not stopped China messing with the ships bringing coal and iron ore to the country - a strange clearance slowdown is in place, affecting as many as 300 ships, and may be part of signals China is thinking it is sending during the trade talks.
In Europe, their factory sector stalled in January, heading steadily towards contraction, on a path that way since the peak in early 2018. New order levels were the lowest since April 2013.
EU inflation is running at +1.4% in January, slightly lower than the +1.6% rate in December.
And so far in Australia, there has been no leaking of the Hayne Report. It will be officially released after markets close in Australia today, at about 6:15pm NZT. Of course tomorrow the RBA releases its monthly rate review but no change is expected.
Wholesale swap rates are little-changed at the short end but are noticeably lower for longer durations. Our 2-10 curve is down to just +59 bps and the flattest we have seen it since October 2016. The UST 10yr yield has settled to be just on 2.68% but still a -7 bps fall for the week. Their 2-10 curve is at +18 bps. The Australian Govt. 10yr yield is at 2.25% and a +3 bps weekly gain. The China Govt. 10yr yield is little-changed at 3.15%, while the New Zealand Govt. 10yr yield is at 2.23% and a -12 bps dive for the week.
Gold has drifted lower over the weekend from Friday to US$1,317/oz. but that is a +US$10 gain for the week.
US oil prices have moved higher are now just over US$55/bbl while the Brent benchmark is just under US$63/bbl. Both are gains of about +US$1/bbl.
The Kiwi dollar will open today at 69 USc. On the cross rates we are at 95.1 AUc, and at 60.2 euro cents. That pushes the TWI-5 up to 72.9.
Bitcoin has changed very little over the weekend, holding at US$3,425 but that is a -3.5% decline in the past seven days. This rate is charted in the exchange rate set below.
The easiest place to stay up with event risk today is by following our Economic Calendar here ».