US stock markets spent the day in the red after ADP payrolls came in well below 200K for a second straight month, indicating that the March slump wasn’t a one-time event and indicating that the US economy has hit a soft patch which looks like it could force the Fed to put off interest rate increases until much later in the year. Comments from FOMC Chair Yellen over stock valuations didn’t help matters either. Canadian stocks had an even more difficult day, with the energy sector dragging the S&P/TSX down on a day when crude oil was up. The defeat of the very oil friendly Conservative government in Alberta, Canada’s main oil producing province after 44 years and the election of the New Democrats (similar to Labour elsewhere) has raised uncertainty over potential changes to taxation or regulation of the oilpatch. Much of the decline took place in the first few minutes of trading after which stocks stabilized. Oil got off to a strong start and received a boost from the first drop in US DOE inventories in four months but a lot of that was unwound by the end of the trading day. The US drop has sent more negative momentum into today’s Asia Pacific session. The S&P/ASX has already broken down while the Nikkei, Hang Seng and Straits Times have all been teetering. Today’s main event is the Australia jobs report where some retrenchment is expected and normal after last month’s big gains. AUD has been climbing since the RBA meeting on speculation that the central bank may be done cutting rates and the jobs report could reinforce or reject that assumption. Meanwhile, NZD remains soft on speculation the RBNZ could start cutting interest rates while JPY has been mixed, gaining on USD but losing ground to the rebounding EUR. Corporate News Tesla Motors ($0.36) vs street ($0.50), sales $1.10B vs street $1.04B, production 11,160 cars. Guides Q2 production to 12,500 cars Activision Blizzard $0.16 vs street $0.07, sales $703M vs street $655M, guides next Q sales to $650M below street $690M and EPS to $0.07 below street $0.09 Economic News Significant announcements released overnight include: US ADP payrolls 169K vs street 200K US ADP payrolls previous revised down to 175K from 189K US crude oil inventories (3.88 mmbbls) vs street 1.35 mmbbls Canada Ivey PMI 58.2 vs street 49.2 vs previous 47.9 UK BRC shop prices (1.9%) vs street (1.7%) Sweden service PMI 53.9 vs previous 57.2 Spain service PMI 60.3 vs street 57.4 Italy service PMI 53.1 vs street 52.0 France service PMI 51.4 vs street 50.8 Germany service PMI 54.0 vs street 54.4 Eurozone service PMI 54.1 vs street 53.7 UK service PMI 59.5 vs street 58.5 Eurozone retail sales 1.6% vs street 2.4% Greece unemployment rate 25.4% vs street 25.6% Upcoming significant announcements include: 9:30 am AEST Australia construction PMI previous 50.1 11:30 am AEST Australia employment change street 4K vs previous 37K 11:30 am AEST Australia full-time jobs previous 32K 11:30 am AEST Australia part-time jobs previous 6K 11:30 am AEST Australia unemployment rate street 6.2% 11:35 am AEST Japan service PMI previous 48.4 7:00 am BST Germany factory orders street 1.9% 9:00 am BST Norway interest rate 1.25% no change expected 8:30 am EDT US jobless claims street 279K vs previous 262K 10:30 am EDT US natural gas street 74 BCF
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