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Trade, Brexit, and data

A potential Brexit agreement and soothing talk on US/China trade helped lift European exchanges overnight. However slumping crude oil prices soured sentiment during the American session. The British pound rose, the US dollar fell and bond yields dropped. The mixed leads mean that data due today could propel Asia Pacific trading.

China retail sales and industrial production for October are forecast to grow in line with the previous month at 9.2% and 5.8% respectively. A print in line or above forecasts would be positive for growth sensitive assets. Exchanges in Hong Kong, Shanghai and Shenzen all outperformed yesterday, pointing to underlying strength, and any positive evidence may see larger than expected gains.

The consensus on GDP numbers from Japan is for negative quarterly growth of 0.3%, giving an annual contraction of 1.0%. The weak expectations also leave markets vulnerable to positive surprise.

In Australia wages growth is in focus. Today’s third quarter read is projected at 0.6%, lifting the annual rate from 2.1% to 2.3%. RBA focus on wages data means this is a highly sensitive release. A lower number will spark talk of weak growth and potential rate cuts, while a stronger number could see the Australian dollar soar as analysts recalibrate their tightening estimates.

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