A lacklustre night’s trading means local factors could dominate Asia Pacific trading today. No news on the trade front, and an internal focus for US politics as Congress heads towards impeachment, left markets sidelined.
Climbing bond yields indicate the continuance of pro-growth sentiment. European bonds sold off, and US ten-year yields lifted to 1.92%, approaching the highest point in four months.
The US House of Representatives began a debate about the potential impeachment of the US President this morning. A vote on the two articles of impeachment is likely, and the carrying of either article will see the President formally impeached and the action move to the Senate. Although the vote will come during today’s trading the market impact could be low given the assumption that the Republican controlled Senate will vote against removing President Trump from office.
The Bank of Japan is expected to hold firm at today’s meeting. Despite repeatedly signalling over the year that the central bank is ready to act, the recent improvement in the global trade outlook and fiscal stimulus from the Japanese government means there is little chance of change today.
Australian unemployment is forecast steady at 5.3%, and estimates centre on the creation of 15,000 new jobs in November. The swing factor is the participation rate. Any deviation from the current 66.0% could skew the headline numbers. The implications for interest rates, confidence and the economic outlook suggest a significant market reaction to any surprise.