After several active days to start the month, stocks and commodities around the world have been consolidating overnight as traders pause to assess the fallout from the changing situation in Syria and key economic numbers out of the US and China. The situation in Syria continues to stabilize. The Russian led compromise of turning over Syria’s chemical weapons stockpile over to the international community appears to be gaining traction as a way for everyone to back down while saving face. Last night US President Obama made the case for an attack then asked Congress to hold off voting on a strike. Whether the delay is to allow diplomacy to work or to avoid a vote the President appeared likely to lose is irrelevant for traders. What is important is that political risks in the region continue to recede for now. Stock markets around the world have been consolidating overnight with the US heading for a flat open, while commodities and resource currencies have started to consolidate following an active few days. The biggest action this morning has been in GBPUSD. Cable has received a big boost from a surprisingly strong UK employment report that showed better than expected improvement in job growth and an unemployment rate creeping closer to the Bank of England’s 7.0% threshold for considering tapering action. With the UK apparently heading for tapering and the US potentially on hold for a bit longer, GBP may continue to outperform the greenback and other majors in the near term. Apple could be active again today as traders digest yesterday’s new iPhone launches. There was no new news from the overnight Beijing event. A rumoured deal with China Mobile did not materialize which could be used as an excuse for more profit-taking. Later this morning, energy market activity may pick up with the release of weekly storage data. Into the afternoon, NZD could get active around today’s RBNZ interest rate decision. While no change to interest rates is expected traders may still be watching for any commentary (or lack of commentary) on whether any further interventions by the central bank in FX markets are planned. Economic News Significant economic announcements released overnight include: UK jobless claims (32K) vs street (21K) UK 3M employment change 80K vs street 55K vs previous 69K UK 3M unemployment rate 7.7% vs street 7.8% South Korea unemployment rate 3.1% vs street 3.2% Australia Westpac consumer conf 110.6 vs previous 105.7 Germany consumer prices 1.5% asexpected Economic reports due later today include: 10:30 am EDT US crude oil inventories street (2.1 mmbbls) 10:30 am EDT US gasoline inventories street (1.0 mmbbls) 5:00 pm EDT NZ interest rate decision 2.50% no change expected