Resource Stocks and Dollars rally as gold and oil drive higher but US retailers crumble

Stock indices in North America found themselves torn between sectors moving sharply in opposite directions. Earnings reports and resource price action played a big role in driving trading today.

Stock indices in North America found themselves torn between sectors moving sharply in opposite directions. Earnings reports and resource price action played a big role in driving trading today.

Retailers in the US were absolutely crushed with Macy’s diving 14% on weak earnings and a cut to its guidance, while Staples fell 17% after a court decision put an end to its planned merger with Office Depot putting both companies futures into doubt.  On the other hand, strong earnings reports sent Electronic Arts and Canadian Solar hurtling higher to 12.2% and 13.1% gains respectively.

Crude oil charged ahead again today with Brent gaining 4% and WTI rising 3.2%. A surprise 3.4% drop and strong technical action (golden crosses) propelled oil markets higher. Gasoline soared 5.0% on a 1.2 mmbbl bigger than expected drop in stockpiles with summer driving season starting soon. These gains along with a rebound in gold and stabilization in copper enabled resource stocks to rally with Freeport gaining 8.9% to lead the charge. Rising resource sectors enabled Canada’s S&P/TSX index to post a small gain on the day, outperforming US indices which fell 0.5%-1.0%.

Resource currencies have also been in rally mode today. NZD is leading the charge as it plays catch-up after underperforming yesterday. The Kiwi Dollar  may remain active through today’s New Zealand PMI and food price reports. CAD, NOK and AUD have also been on the rebound.

GBP had a mixed day rising against USD but falling slightly against EUR. Sterling could be quite active Thursday around the Bank of England meeting. While the cental bank is likely to sit on its hands again with the Brexit vote approaching, comments on Brexit and the UK economy in his statement afterward could have a significant influence on sentiment.

Corporate News

There have been no major announcements after the US close so far.


Economic News

Significant announcements released overnight include:

US DOE crude oil inventories        (3.4 mmbbls) vs street 0.75 mmbbls
US DOE gasoline inventories        (1.2 mmbbls) vs street (0.5 mmbbls)

UK industrial production            (0.2%) vs street (0.4%)
UK manufacturing production        (1.9%) as expected

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)  

8:30 am AEST        NZ BusinessNZ PMI        previous 54.7
8:45 am AEST        NZ food prices            previous 0.5%
11:00 am AEST        Australia inflation estimate    previous 3.6%

7:00 am BST        Germany wholesale prices    street (2.6%)
7:00 am BST         Sweden unemployment rate    street 3.8% vs previous 4.0%
7:45 am BST        France consumer prices        street (0.2%)
8:30 am BST        Sweden consumer prices    street 0.9%
9:00 am BST        Norway GDP            street 0.2%
10:00 am BST        Eurozone industrial production    street 0.9%
10:00 am BST        Greece unemployment rate    street 24.3%


9:00 am BST        Norway interest rate        0.50% no change expected

12:00 pm BST        Bank of England interest rate and QE    0.50% and £375B no change
                                expected    
12:30 pm BST        Bank of England Governor Carney speaking

8:30 am EDT        US import prices        street (5.4%) vs previous (6.2%)
8:30 am EDT        US jobless claims        street 270K

8:30 am EDT        Canada new house prices    street 1.9%

10:30 am EDT        US natural gas            street 58 BCF

11:00 am EDT        FOMC Mester speaking
11:45 am EDT        FOMC Rosengren speaking
2:15 pm EDT        FOMC George speaking