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Resource stocks rally as falling USD boosts gold and oil

With a neutral Fed not has hawkish relative to other central banks as seemed only a couple of days ago, and JPY plus NZD in rally mode, USD spent the day steadily sliding. The greenback retreat sparked a rally for gold that appears close to calling off a head and shoulders top while giving WTI crude oil the tailwind it needed to surge past $45.00/bbl with $50.00 looming ahead.  

Rising commodity prices lit a fire under commodity stocks. The Canadian S&P/TSX finished the day flat outperforming major US indices which fell about 1.0%. Gains in Canada were led by gold producers which dominated the large cap leaderboard, plus Bombardier who nailed down a big $5B 125 jet order for its CSeries program from Delta Air Lines. With Cliffs Resources rallying 25% in the US, renewed interest in miners and other resource companies could carry through into today’s Australia trading.

Action in technology stocks was mixed today. Facebook’s strong earnings drove its shares to a 7.2% gains but Symantec lost 6.7% on a profit warnings while Apple fell another 3.1% on the news that Carl Icahn has sold all its shares on concern about slower China growth. After the close today, LinkedIn and Amazon.com posted very strong earnings and/or guidance which could attract attention overnight and into Friday. LinkedIn has gained 20% in aftermarket trading a big turnaround from last quarter’s massive post-earnings selloff.

It’s the last day of trading for April (wow where did the month go?) bringing another flurry of economic numbers that could move the markets including Eurozone GDP, CPI and employment figures, USD personal income and Chicago PMI, and Canada GCP plus producer prices as traders prepare for next week’s big PMI and payrolls reports.    

Corporate News

Amazon.com    $1.07 vs street $0.58 (wow!!!) sales $29.1B vs street $27.9B, guides next Q sales to $28.0-$30.5B vs street $28.3B

LinkedIn        $0.74 vs street $0.60, guides next Q EPS to $0.74-$0.77 above street $0.71

Amgen     $2.90 vs street $2.60, raises full year EPS guidance to $10.85-$11.20 from $10.60-$11.00.  

Economic News

Significant announcements released overnight include:

US Q1 GDP            0.5% vs street 0.7 and previous 1.4%
US Q1 personal consumption    1.9%% vs street 1.7% and previous 2.4%
US core PCE inflation        2.1% vs street 1.9% vs previous 1.3%

US jobless claims        257K vs street 259K
US natural gas storage        73 BCF vs street 70 BCF
US Kansas City Fed        (4) vs previous (6)

Canada CFIB bus barometer    59.2 vs previous 52 3

UK Nationwide house prices    4.9% vs street 5.0% and previous 5.7%

Germany unemployment chnge (16K) vs street 0K
Germany unemployment rate    6.2% as expected
Germany consumer prices    0.1% as expected

Norway unemployment rate    4.6% vs street 4.8%
Norway retail sales         (0.7%) vs street 0.4%
Sweden retail sales        1.9% vs street 3.5%
Greece retail sales        (7.3%) vs street (2.0%)

Spain consumer prices        (1.1%) vs street (0.7%)

Upcoming significant economic announcements include:

(Note: 11:30 am in Sydney/Melbourne is currently 1:30 pm in Auckland, 4:30 pm in Vancouver, 7:30 pm in Toronto/Montréal, 12:30 am in London and 8:30 am in Singapore)  

11:00 am AEDT        NZ ANZ activity outlook        previous 29.4
11:00 am AEDT        NZ ANZ bus confidence        previous 3.2

11:30 am AEDT        Australia producer prices    previous 1.9%

7:00 am BST        Germany retail sales        street 2.7%
7:45 am BST        France consumer prices        street (0.1%)
8:00 am BST         Spain GDP            street 3.3%
9:00 am BST        Norway unemployment rate    street 3.3%
9:00 am BST        Italy unemployment rate        street 11.6%

10:00 am BST        Eurozone unemployment rate    street 10.3%
10:00 am BST        Eurozone consumer prices    street (0.1%)
10:00 am BST        Eurozone core CPI        street 0.9%
10:00 am BST        Eurozone GDP            street 1.4% vs previous 1.6%

6:30 am EDT        FOMC Kaplan speaking

8:30 am EDT        US Q1 employment cost index    street 0.6%
8:30 am EDT        US personal income        street 0.3%
8:30 am EDT        US personal spending        street 0.2%
8:30 am EDT        US core PCE inflation        street 1.6%

8:30 am EDT        Canada Feb GDP        street 1.5%
8:30 am EDT        Canada industrial prices        street 0.5% vs previous (1.1%)
8:30 am EDT        Canada raw material prices    street 3.7% vs previous (2.6%)

9:45 am EDT        US Chicago PMI        street 52.6
10:00 am EDT        US consumer sentiment     street 90.0


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