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IFX Gertrude
post Oct 12 2017, 05:09 AM
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Australia Home Loans Rise 1.0% In August



The total number of home loans in Australia was up a seasonally adjusted 1.0 percent on month in August, the Australian Bureau of Statistics said on Thursday - coming in at 57,161.

That beat forecasts for a gain of 0.5 percent following the downwardly revised 2.8 percent increase in July (originally 2.9 percent).

Investment lending advanced 4.3 percent to A$12.633 billion after sliding 3.7 percent in the previous month.

The value of loans gained 0.9 percent to A$21.265 billion after rising 1.3 percent a month earlier.

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IFX Gertrude
post Oct 12 2017, 06:02 AM
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Fed Minutes show Policymakers’ Support for December Rate Hike



The minutes of the Federal Reserve meeting on September 19-20 showed that members of the FOMC had a prolonged discussion regarding the prospects of inflation's growth and slowing the rate of future interest rate hikes if it failed to pick-up.

Record of the most recent policy meeting showed that Fed officials see the economy growing at a steady rate. The minutes also show that policymakers expect inflation will reach the targeted 2 percent, with FOMC members anticipating that factors weakening inflation are temporary.

Several members said that they would focus on the incoming inflation data over the next few months when deciding regarding the future of interest rate moves.

It also indicated that an interest rate hike later this year is almost certain, despite some divisions regarding the outlook for the direction of inflation. According to the summary of the meeting, many members thought that another rate hike in the target range later this year, presumably in December, was likely to be warranted if the medium-term outlook continued to be unchanged.

In the end, the FOMC ruled against an interest rate hike at the meeting, choosing instead to announced that in October it would start to reduce its massive balance sheet, which will be done by allowing small part of the proceeds from its maturing bonds to roll off.

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IFX Gertrude
post Oct 13 2017, 05:49 AM
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Singapore GDP Surges 6.3% On Quarter In Q3



Singapore's gross domestic product climbed a seasonally adjusted 6.3 percent on quarter in the third quarter of 2017, the Ministry of Trade and Industry said in Friday's advance estimate.

That beat forecasts for an increase of 3.7 percent following the upwardly revised 2.4 percent gain in the second quarter (originally 2.2 percent).

On a yearly basis, GDP jumped 4.6 percent - again exceeding expectations for 3.8 percent following the 2.9 percent increase in the three months prior.

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IFX Gertrude
post Oct 13 2017, 06:19 AM
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U.S. Producer Prices Strengthens in September



U.S. producer inflation increased in September as gasoline prices notched its biggest increase over two years amid hurricane-linked production issues at Texas oil refineries.

At an annual rate, the PPI jumped 2.6 percent, the biggest jump since February 2012 and came after a 2.4 percent rise in August. The rise is driven by the strong increase in wholesale gasoline prices, which jumped 10.9 percent in September

According to the Labor Department, the higher energy prices most likely resulted from the reduced refining capacity in refineries in the Gulf Coast area that was devastated by Hurricane Harvey. The increase in gasoline prices due to the storm is seen to be only temporary as a supply glut persists in the markets.

The producer price index for final demand rose 0.4 percent, the Labor Department reported, also lifted by the rise in services. Wholesale prices in August rose 0.2 percent.

Other data released by the government agency showed filings for unemployment benefits declined to a more than one-month low in the previous week as the boost to the applications in Texas and Florida due to Hurricane Harvey and Irma continued to decline.

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IFX Gertrude
post Oct 16 2017, 04:49 AM
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China CPI Slows To 1.6% In September



Consumer prices in China were up 1.6 percent on year in September, the National Bureau of Statistics said on Monday.

That was in line with expectations, and down from 1.8 percent in August.

On a monthly basis, consumer prices were up 0.5 percent - accelerating from 0.4 percent a month prior.

The bureau also said that producer prices jumped an annual 6.9 percent - exceeding forecasts for 6.4 percent and up from 6.3 percent in the previous month.

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IFX Gertrude
post Oct 16 2017, 05:18 AM
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Gold Prices Slip Amid Strong Dollar



Gold prices eased slightly on Monday, pulled down by a strong dollar and Asian equities.

Spot gold fell 0.1 percent at $1,303.42 per ounce. It gained almost 0.9 percent in the session earlier on lower-than-expected U.S. inflation data.

U.S. gold futures for December delivery increased 0.1 percent at $1,305.70 an ounce.

The dollar index, which measures the U.S. currency versus a basket of peers, stood steady at 93.101. Asian shares climbed to fresh peaks on Monday following a strong lead from Wall Street.

The U.S. economy continues to be strong and the labour market's strength calls for gradual hikes in rates despite subdued inflation, according to Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen.

Wages and inflation in the euro zone will eventually rise but more slowly than initially expected, requiring continued patience from policymakers, European Central Bank President Mario Draghi said.

Senior Trump administration officials recently said that the United States was committed to remaining part of the Iran nuclear accord as of the moment, despite President Donald Trump's criticisms of the deal and warnings that his country might pull out.

Hedge funds and money managers trimmed their net long position in COMEX gold contracts for the fourth consecutive week in the week to Oct. 10, according to data from the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission.

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IFX Gertrude
post Oct 17 2017, 04:54 AM
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RBA Minutes: Australian Economy Continues To Expand As Expected



Members of the Reserve Bank of Australia said that the country's economy was growing in line with expectations, minutes from the bank's October 3 meeting revealed on Tuesday. Price pressure remained broadly subdued, the minutes said, thanks in part to a strengthening Australian dollar and a softening greenback. At the meeting, the bank kept its benchmark lending rate unchanged at the record low 1.50 percent, as expected. The interest rate has been at this level since September 2016. The bank had reduced the rate by 25-basis points each in August and May last year. "Taking account of the available information, the Board judged that holding the stance of monetary policy unchanged at this meeting would be consistent with sustainable growth in the economy and achieving the inflation target over time," the minutes said. The bank reiterated that the low level of interest rates is continuing to support the Australian economy. Policymakers also noted more consistent signs of non-mining business investment picking up. The bank expects inflation to pick up gradually as the economy strengthens. According to RBA, the unemployment rate will decline only gradually over the next couple of years. An appreciating exchange rate would be expected to result in a slower pick-up in economic activity and inflation than currently forecast. It is also weighing on the outlook for output and employment. "In Australia, financial conditions for companies remained accommodative, with price-to-earnings ratios above average and corporate bond spreads at a decade low," the minutes said. On housing market, the bank observed conditions vary considerably around the country. Housing prices have been rising briskly in some markets, while in others they have been declining. Following some tightening in credit conditions, growth in borrowing by investors slowed a little recently, the bank said. "The strengthening in global economic conditions had reduced some near-term risks to financial stability arising from rare or extreme events. However, low interest rates and low financial market volatility had promoted financial risk-taking," the minutes said. Also on Tuesday, the Australian Bureau of Statistics said that the total number of new motor vehicle sales in Australia was down a seasonally adjusted 0.5 percent on month in September, standing at 98,882. That follows the flat reading in August. On a yearly basis, new motor vehicle sales were down 0.8 percent after climbing 1.7 percent in the previous month. By individual component, sales for passenger vehicles sank 1.0 percent on month, while sports utility vehicle sales eased 0.1 percent and other vehicle sales advanced 0.7 percent.

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IFX Gertrude
post Oct 17 2017, 05:23 AM
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Gold Steady Amid Strong Dollar



Gold prices held steady early on Tuesday after dropping below $1,300 per ounce in the session earlier, while the dollar was firm on strong U.S. Treasury yields.

Spot gold was flat at $1,293.60 per ounce. The precious metal declined 0.8 percent in the session earlier.

U.S. gold futures for December delivery dropped to $1,296 an ounce. The dollar held gains versus the yen and the euro on Tuesday, buoyed by an increase in Treasury yields following a report that U.S. President Donald Trump preferred a policy hawk as the next head of the Federal Reserve. He is set to meet with Fed Chair Janet Yellen on Thursday as part of his search for a new candidate for her position, according to a source familiar with the matter.

Among other metals, palladium previously tumbled 1.6 percent at $972.10 per ounce after hitting its highest since February 2001 at $1,010.50.

Some investors had been wary when the metal, mostly used for auto catalysts to clean pollution from exhaust fumes, broke above $1,000 on Sept. 6, as a result of concern regarding weak global auto sales.

However, these concerns have been put aside after the world's largest auto market China recently posted sales growth of 5.7 percent in September.

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IFX Gertrude
post Yesterday, 05:13 AM
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ARGENTINA: Merval Falls 1.91%, Tracking ADRs



Merval, the main index of the Buenos Aires Stock Exchange, tumbled 1.91% Tuesday, closing at 26,622.40 points in the first trading session of the week after a holiday in Argentina.

Local papers tracked the losses posted Monday by the ADRs of Argentinean companies traded on Wall Street in the days previous to an election in which the market takes for granted the triumph of the President Mauricio Macri political group.

The main candidates are in the final stretch of their campaigns. On Monday, Cristina Kirchner led a crowded rally in the Racing Club stadium, while Macri took part in an act with its allies in Ferro.

The shares of Galicia (+0.26%) and Petrobras (+0.11%) rose, while Pampa (-4.89%), Costanera (-4.24%), Agrometal (-3.51%), Comercial del Plata (-3.38%), and Petrolera Pampa (-3.38%) fell.

The locally traded U.S dollar closed down 0.08%, at 17.33 Argentinean pesos, reversing an early rise, also under pressure of the electoral week.

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IFX Gertrude
post Yesterday, 06:05 AM
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Carney Confirms Rate Hike Imminent as Inflation Hits Multi-Year High



Governor Mark Carney reaffirmed that the Bank of England is close to making its first rate hike move in more than 10 years, as inflation reach 3 percent and another official said that the UK economy is near an inflection point.

The head of the BOE and the two newly appointed members of the central bank's rate-setting Monetary Policy Committee indicated that the dissolution of economic slack is their main consideration as they prepare for a November 2 meeting decision during their testimonies to lawmakers. The addresses coincided with the release of a report indicating consumer prices accelerating at its fastest rate since April 2012.

Carney stated that since the BOE had used up more spare capacity and due to increasing inflationary pressures in the UK, majority of the members of the governing committee believe that a rate hike in the following month may be fitting.

The BOE leader professed that while CPI growth is near its tipping level, it's more likely than not to accelerate once more this month. In turn, this would bring CPI to a more than full percentage point above BOE's 2 percent target.

Meanwhile, MPC member Silvana Tenreyro said that the BOE may soon need to move, but put an emphasis that the move may occur in the coming months as the economy reaches its tipping point.

A main concern for policymakers is that the economic slack that can hurt price pressures may soon be undermined. Jobless rate is at a historic low and uncertainty surrounding Brexit threatens to affect output.

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IFX Gertrude
post Today, 01:14 AM
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Japan Has Y670.2 Billion Trade Surplus In September



Japan had a merchandise trade surplus of 670.2 billion yen in September, the Ministry of Finance said on Thursday.

That beat forecasts for a surplus of 556.8 billion yen following the downwardly revised 112.6 billion yen surplus in August (originally 113.6 billion yen).

Exports climbed 14.1 percent on year, missing forecasts for a gain of 15.0 percent and down from 18.1 percent in the previous month.

Imports picked up an annual 12.0 percent versus expectations for 14.7 percent and down from 15.2 a month earlier.

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IFX Gertrude
post Today, 02:20 AM
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European Markets Advanced on Third-Quarter Earnings Reports



European markets finished higher on Wednesday as investors focused on the recent batch of earnings and economic data releases.

The pan-European Stoxx 600 rose nearly 0.29 percent, with most sectors and major bourses in positive territory.

Politics continued to persist in the background, as investors await recent news on Brexit and Catalonia.

Spain's IBEX stretched out losses following news reports that showed Catalonia refuses to give in to the Spanish government's demand of renouncing its independence.

Autos, food and beverages and media stocks were among the best performers on Wednesday.

UK consumer goods maker Reckitt Benckiser dropped over one percent after it trimmed its full-year comparable sales forecast and announced a company overhaul following a "soft" third quarter.

The UK's second largest grocer Sainsbury's declined 1.2 percent after Sky News reported that the company will cut 2,000 store and back office jobs in an effort to cut costs amid rising competition.

Dutch chemicals group Akzo Nobel reported its third-quarter results, with the company expecting upbeat developments for the EMEA region (except for the U.K.) and North America going forward. However, it revealed that "headwinds" are expected to continue. Shares of Azko Nobel fell 1.84 percent.

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission recently charged Australian-British miner Rio Tinto and two of its former top executives with fraud. The SEC said that the execs had inflated the value of coal assets in Mozambique, which was acquired for $3.7 billion and sold years later for $50 million, according to a report from Reuters. Rio Tinto shares dropped nearly three percent.

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