US indices are trending down for a second straight day on mixed reports out of the US. Retail sales for March did not improve as much as had been hoped and may still have been impacted by brutal winter weather in many parts of the country. On the other hand, earnings from three senior companies in the banking and health care sectors beat the street with JP Morgan coming in particularly strong. Major European indices are drifting lower again this morning, except for the UK which appears to be benefitting from a better than expected same store sales report overnight. Singapore also had a particularly strong rally overnight after GDP beat the street by a wide margin and its central bank didn’t cut rates like the street had thought it would. The Hang Seng sold off again in the wake of disappointing Chinese trade figures reported earlier this week. In currency markets today, gold is retreating once again while NOK and to a lesser extent CAD are benefiting from moderate gains in the price of crude oil. USD has fallen to the bottom of the heap with soft retail pushing off rate hike expectations to later in the year. June looks increasingly unlikely unless we were to see a major bounce back in April from a rough winter like we did last year. Earnings reports continue to ramp up this week, influencing action in individual stocks and sectors. Retailers and banks in the US may be particularly active on this morning’s news. We also may see positioning ahead of tonight’s Chinese Q1 GDP report which is due at 10:00 pm EDT. Corporate News JPMorgan Chase $1.60 vs street $1.41 Wells Fargo $1.04 vs street $0.98 Johnson and Johnson $1.56 vs street $1.53 Shaw communications $0.34 vs street $0.39 Economic News Economic reports released overnight and this morning include: People’s Bank of China cut the interest rate on 7-day reverse repos to 3.35% from 3.45% Monetary Authority of Singapore maintained its benchmark rate when a cut had been expected US retail sales 0.9% vs street 1.1% US retail ex auto 0.4% vs street 0.7% US retail ex auto and gasoline 0.5% vs street 0.6% US producer prices (0.8%) vs street 0.9% UK same store sales 3.2% vs street 0.6% UK consumer prices 0.0% as expected UK core CPI 1.0% vs street 1.2% UK retail prices 0.9% vs street 1.0% UK producer input prices (13.0%) vs street (13.5%) UK producer output prices (1.7%) vs street (1.8%) UK ONS house prices 7.2% vs previous 8.4% Eurozone industrial production 1.6% vs street 0.8% Sweden unemployment rate 4.0% vs street 4.1% Sweden consumer prices 0.2% vs street 0.3% Spain consumer prices (0.7%) as expected China new Yuan loans 1,180B vs street 1,040B China M2 money supply 11.6% vs street 12.4% Singapore GDP 2 1% vs street 1.7% NZ house prices 6.7% vs previous 0.8% NZ house sales 20.3% vs previous 12.6% Economic reports due later today include: There are no major announcements or speeches scheduled for North America later today.