US indices have been on the rebound overnight, clawing back much of yesterday’s losses after Alcoa came in with very strong sales and earnings. There had been growing fears in recent days that earnings might not be strong enough to justify the higher valuations and expectations built into stocks over the last few months, but Alcoa’s strong report has put those fears to rest at least until we get more reports next week. Alcoa’s results suggest that we could see a positive quarter from mining companies, at least on the base metal side which has the potential to help markets with a higher weighting in mining like Canada over time although it didn’t work for Australia overnight where stocks sold off despite a positive consumer confidence report. Indices and dollars for both Canada and Australia may be active through the rest of the week with employment numbers due down under this evening and up north on Friday. Commodities are mixed today. Crude oil is falling again ahead of US storage reports as political risks continue to subside, while natural gas attempts to stabilize from a recent selloff. Metals are climbing again today with gold, silver and platinum all posting gains along with copper. Currency trading has been relatively subdued so far today with the most significant action in SEK which is rebounding on the back of a better than expected Swedish employment report. Into the afternoon, we could see some trading action around the release of minutes from the last FOMC meeting. Although there was a press conference and member projections discussion, the minutes could influence speculation on how soon the central bank may start to raise interest rates. Corporate News Alcoa $0.18 vs street $0.12 Economic News Economic reports released overnight and this morning include: Canada housing starts 198K vs street 190K Australia consumer confidence 94.9 vs previous 93.2 China consumer prices 2.3% vs street 2.4% China producer prices (1.1%) vs street (1.0%) Sweden unemployment rate 4.1% vs street 4.3% and previous 3.9% UK house prices 8.8% vs street 8.9% Greece consumer prices (1.1%) vs street (1.5%) Economic reports due later today include: 10:30 am EDT US crude oil inventories street (2.5 mmbbls) 10:30 am EDT US gasoline inventories street (0.4 mmbbls) 2:00 pm EDT US FOMC minutes