Markets traded steadily overnight. Stock indices remained close to square, and the US dollar traded in a very narrow range, finishing unchanged. Bitcoin provided the highlight, smashing through previous highs, and US corporate reporting was dominated by food and beverage giants.
The Bank of New York Mellon announced it will process Bitcoin transactions, joining other companies like Tesla and Mastercard in the move into the crypto sphere. The increasing participation of financial institutions moves cryptocurrencies towards adoption and acceptance as a payment method. While it is still unclear which currency is the leading candidate for common usage, coins with a technological edge have outperformed recently. Ethereum, EOS, NEO and Cardano are enjoying extraordinary support.
Kraft Heinz shares climbed 7% after reporting that Q4 revenues and earnings were better than expected, largely due to pandemic fuelled pantry stocking. The effect also lifted the quarterly performance of Kelloggs, Molson Coors and Pepsico in a stronger night for consumer related stocks. Dominion Energy and rating agency Moody’s face shareholders tonight.
In Australia, after a busy week for analysts the only major company report today is Mirvac Group. The developer and real estate investor saw a 35% drop in profits for the half year. The poor news may be offset by cautiously optimistic guidance from management.
Futures indicate modest selling pressure in Japan and Australia today. Volumes could stay low as much of the region takes the Lunar New Year break. The British pound is in focus ahead of tonight’s release of UK GDO industrial production and trade data.