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IFX Gertrude
post Jul 12 2017, 03:03 AM
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Amazon.com On Track to Break Sales Record



Amazon.com Inc said its Prime Day sale is poised to be the largest shopping event in its history by sales. The world's biggest online retailer said customers ordered over three times as many Echo-family speakers than the previous year's Prime Day, which at the time broke records for Amazon devices.

Third-party sellers have sold over 50 percent more items on the site by noon compared with the same timeframe in 2016, according to a statement by Amazon.

Analysts estimated the previous year's event had brought in more than $500 million.

The news highlights Amazon's rapid pace of growth as more shoppers ordered online rather than going to stores.

Customers had to join Amazon Prime to get discounts in the 30-hour event. U.S. members of the club pay $99 a year for benefits like two-day shipping, and they tend to buy more goods, more often from Amazon. A timer showing when the deals will expire has encouraged shoppers to buy more.

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IFX Gertrude
post Jul 13 2017, 03:09 AM
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ARGENTINA: Merval Rises 0.61% Underpinned By Petrobras Brasil



Merval, the benchmark Argentinean stock market index, gained 0.61%, closing at 22,262.64 points, boosted by rising oil prices after data showed a decrease in US inventories.

Petrobras Brasil increased by 4.61% in Buenos Aires after news that Brazilian former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva was sentenced to 9 years in prison for corruption.

Marcos Forquera, an analyst at Buenos Aires Valores, said that the stock market had a positive start today, but profit-taking hit a few shares, leading to a weaker rise at the end of the day.

He warned that Merval is near its record high and that market uncertainty is on the rise ahead of the October legislative elections in Argentina, increasing the odds of a sharp correction in the Buenos Aires Stock Exchange.

Meanwhile, the locally traded US dollar fell by 0.30%, to 16.94 Argentinean pesos. According to Fernando Izzo, an analyst at ABC Mercado de Cambio, the decline was a result of lower demand for the greenback and dollar sales from grain exporters.

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IFX Gertrude
post Jul 13 2017, 04:48 AM
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Dollar Flat After Yellen Statement, Canadian Dollar Held Firm



The dollar was relatively flat early on Thursday after Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen did not deliver a much hawkish tone as many had initially expected. The Canadian dollar held firm near a 13-month peak after the Bank of Canada raised interest rates for the first time since 2010.

The greenback fell as Yellen's comments spurred a sharp drop in U.S. Treasury yields.

The dollar index versus a basket of major currencies was little changed at 95.758 after pulling back to as low as 95.511 the day earlier, its weakest in 12 days.

The U.S. currency edged up 0.2 percent at 113.440 yen after falling nearly 0.7 percent overnight, when it retreated from a four-month peak near 114.495 touched earlier in the week on expectations of U.S.-Japan monetary policy divergence.

The Canadian dollar, also supported by an increase in crude oil prices, was at C$1.2750 a dollar, after rallying over one percent to C$1.2681 overnight, its highest since June 2016.

The BOC increased interest rates for the first time in almost seven years, claiming the economy was no longer in need of as much stimulus.

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IFX Gertrude
post Jul 14 2017, 02:45 AM
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Singapore GDP Expands 2.5% On Year In Q2



Singapore's gross domestic product advanced 2.5 percent on year in the second quarter of 2017, the Ministry of Trade and Industry said in Friday's advance estimate.

That follows the 2.5 percent increase in the previous three months.

On a quarterly annualized, seasonally adjusted basis, GDP added 0.4 percent after sinking 1.9 percent in the three months prior.

The manufacturing sector expanded 8.0 percent on year in the first quarter, moderating from the 8.5 percent growth in the previous quarter.

Growth was supported mainly by the electronics and precision engineering clusters, the ministry said, which saw robust expansion on the back of strong external demand for semiconductors.

It added 2.4 percent on quarter, up from 0.4 percent in Q1.

The construction sector contracted 5.6 percent on year after sliding 6.1 percent in the three months prior.

The sector was weighed down by weakness in both private and public sector construction, the bureau noted.

On a quarterly basis, the sector climbed 4.3 percent after contracting 14.4 percent in the previous three months.

The services producing industries added 1.7 percent on year after gaining 1.4 percent in the first quarter.

Growth was supported primarily by transportation, storage and business services.

On a quarterly basis, the sector added 0.4 percent after contracting 2.7 percent in the three months prior.

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IFX Gertrude
post Jul 14 2017, 03:19 AM
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Oil Prices Stabilizes on Solid Chinese Demand



Oil prices were steady as China's strong appetite for fuel eased worries of an ongoing supply overhang.

Brent crude futures traded at $47.75 per barrel, rising by 1 cent from their last settlement. Meanwhile, U.S. WTI crude futures traded at $45.48 per barrel, falling 1 cent from the previous session's close.

China imported 212 million tonnes of crude oil, equivalent to 8.55 million bpd from January to June of the year. This is up 13.8 percent during the same period last year, according to customs data, making china the biggest importer of crude products ahead of the U.S.

The solid demand from China allayed worries regarding an ongoing fuel supply glut.

On Wednesday, OPEC said that the world would require 32.20 million bpd of crude from its producer members next year, down 60, 000 bpd from the current year, as consumers have increasing options of supply from outside the cartel. But the group also said its output climbed by 393, 000 bpd in June to 32.611 million bpd, with gains led by Nigeria and Libya.

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IFX Gertrude
post Jul 17 2017, 03:08 AM
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BRAZIL: IMF Increases GDP Growth Forecast For 2017, Cuts 2018 Estimate



The International Monetary Fund (IMF) raised Brazil's economic growth forecast for this year but reduced its expansion estimate for 2018, highlighting the political uncertainty in the country.

According to the IMF, the Brazilian Gross Domestic Product (GDP) should rise by 0.3% in 2017 and 1.3% in 2018. In April, the growth forecasts were at 0.2% and 1.7%, respectively. "The severe Brazilian economic recession seems to be nearing an end," IMF said in the report.

In the medium term, according to the IMF, Brazil's GDP should move to an annual expansion of 2%, although the recent increase in political instability could hurt the economy's predictability.

"The government's ability to deliver on social security reform, a necessary step toward securing fiscal sustainability, has become more uncertain - and, with national elections scheduled for 2018, the window for legislative action is closing," the Fund said.

Regarding inflation, the IMF projects that it will remain below the 4.5% target for this year and next. The slowdown in inflation, according to the Fund, should make room for more monetary easing.

"After almost two years of being above the ceiling of the central bank's tolerance range of 6.5 percent, inflation has declined rapidly over the past year. The impact of large increases in regulated prices in 2015 has dissipated, while a widening output gap, an appreciating exchange rate, declining inflation expectations, and a favorable shock to food prices have combined to speed disinflation since late 2016," IMF said in its report.

Nevertheless, the Fund stresses that political instability and the impact of corruption investigations are the primary sources of risks for Brazil, which could jeopardize reforms and economic recovery.

The IMF considers possible that the pension reform will be weakened or postponed until after the next presidential election. On the external side, the tightening of global financial conditions and a slowdown in China's economy are the main threats to Brazilian economic growth.

The Fund also mentions Brazil's flexible exchange rate and the high level of international reserves - at $ 365 billion at the end of last year, above the level deemed adequate by the IMF - as positive highlights.

The health of the Brazilian banking sector has also improved. "Despite the recession, profits before taxes have surged due to high interest margins and lower funding costs. To limit increases in nonperforming loans, banks have continued renegotiating the terms of loans and writing off delinquent loans," noted the Fund.

In order for Brazil to enter sustainably on a growth path, the IMF recommends that the government guarantee fiscal sustainability through the consolidation of public finances and pension reform. The Fund also stressed the importance of spending control and drew attention to the debt of the Brazilian states, suggesting that the federal government must continue to seek coordinated solutions to solve the problem.

On monetary policy, the Fund recommends that the Central Bank reduce the interest rate, although it considers that the institution has taken appropriate decisions so far. For the IMF, the Central Bank must constantly monitor the evolution of inflation and improve its communication and measures to alleviate distortions in the credit market.

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IFX Gertrude
post Jul 17 2017, 03:38 AM
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Hammond Warns of Brexit Uncertainty's Impact



Chancellor Philip Hammond told BBC that firms are postponing their investments in the UK due to the uncertainty regarding Brexit.

Hammond's comments came as a Confederation of British Industry (CBI) survey indicated that 42 percent of UK firms believe Brexit has affected their investment plans, prompting the business group to call on the government to swiftly secure a future EU trade deal.

He said that businesses are holding off from putting more money in the country until they see more clarity regarding the future relationship of the UK with the Europe will look like.

He said that government ministers were becoming increasingly resolved that there is a need for a transitional deal in order to avoid shaking up business conditions too much as the UK withdraws from the EU.

He noted that five weeks ago the concept of a transition period was relatively new, but not the majority of the cabinet now sees the need for some kind of transition period.

The second round of Brexit talks will occur on Monday in Brussels.

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IFX Gertrude
post Jul 18 2017, 02:05 AM
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European Markets Mixed but Mining Shares Rise



European stocks closed mixed as investors priced in upbeat Chinese data and paid attention to earnings, while mining shares rose.

The pan-European Stoxx 600 climbed less than two points at 386.86, trimming its gains as most major European stocks moved lower. London's FTSE 100 rose 0.22 percent, France's CAC 40 fell 0.14 percent and Germany's DAX 30 lost 0.41 percent. Last week, the Stoxx 600 advanced 1.8 percent, the biggest gain since early May.

The upbeat second quarter gross domestic product reading released overnight from China helped boost bullish sentiment.

Advances in the basic materials group were led by mining stocks, which were supported following China's stronger than expected data. Data from China, a major consumer of industrial and precious metals, also revealed strengthening in industrial production and retail sales.

Weir Group led gains on the Stoxx 600 with advances of over eight percent after the company said it sees full-year revenue to exceed analysts' estimates.

Telenor was the second biggest advancer, rising almost eight percent as the Norwegian telecommunications firm increased its margin forecasts for this year after posting a solid second quarter.

European energy stocks traded mixed while financial stocks were under pressure.

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IFX Gertrude
post Jul 18 2017, 02:58 AM
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Australia New Motor Vehicle Sales Gain 1.2% In June



The total number of new motor vehicle sales in Australia was up a seasonally adjusted 1.2 percent on month in June, the Australian Bureau of Statistics said on Tuesday - coming in at 102,275.

That follows the 3.1 percent jump in May.

Sales for passenger vehicles added 0.5 percent, along with sports utility vehicles (1.4 percent) and other vehicles (1.3 percent).

The largest upward movement across all states and territories was in the Northern Territory (2.8 percent),

On a yearly basis, sales advanced 3.6 percent, slowing from 5.3 percent in the previous month.

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IFX Gertrude
post Jul 19 2017, 02:43 AM
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South Korea PPI Slips 0.4% In June



Producer prices in South Korea were down 0.4 percent on month in June, the Bank of Korea said on Wednesday following the 0.3 percent contraction in May.

Individually, prices for agricultural, forestry and marine products fell 1.2 percent on month, while manufacturing products shed 0.6 percent, and services and utilities were unchanged.

On a yearly basis, prices advanced 2.8 percent after rising 3.4 percent in the previous month.

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IFX Gertrude
post Jul 19 2017, 03:30 AM
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Wall Street Mostly Higher as Nasdaq Ends at Record Peak



U.S. equities finished mostly higher on Tuesday as investors priced in more corporate quarterly reports. The Nasdaq reported its eighth session in a row of advances, the longest streak since its 10-day string in February 2015.

The Dow Jones industrial average dropped 0.25 percent at 21,574.73, weighed down by Goldman Sachs. The index tumbled over 150 points at its session lows.

The S&P 500 rose 0.06 percent at 2,460.61, a record closing peak with information technology leading gainers. The Nasdaq composite climbed 0.5 percent at 6,344.31, a record peak. The index touched an intraday record and an eight-day winning streak, its longest since February 2015.

Goldman Sachs added the most losses on the Dow after posting a 40 percent decline in second-quarter bond trading revenue. It's top and bottom-line quarterly results exceeded Wall Street expectations.

Netflix jumped over 13 percent to an all-time peak. The American entertainment company said it added 5.2 million total memberships in its second quarter. Facebook also reached a record intraday high.

Bank of America reported quarterly results which exceeded expectations. Its stock, however, was weighed down by a sharp loss in trading revenue.

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IFX Gertrude
post Jul 20 2017, 02:29 AM
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Japan Has Y439.907 Billion Trade Surplus



Japan had a merchandise trade surplus of 439.907 billion yen in June, the Ministry of Finance said on Thursday.

That was shy of expectations for a surplus of 488.0 billion yen following the 204.2 billion yen deficit in May.

Exports were up 9.7 percent on year, topping expectations for an increase of 9.5 percent following the 14.9 percent jump in the previous month.

Imports climbed an annual 15.5 percent versus forecasts for 14.4 percent after gaining 17.8 percent a month earlier.

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IFX Gertrude
post Jul 20 2017, 03:21 AM
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Wall Street Advanced, Buoyed by Better-than-Expected Earnings



U.S. equities finished at record peaks on Wednesday as investors priced in key quarterly earnings.

The Dow Jones industrial average ended at a record peak, climbing 0.31 percent to 21,640.75. The Nasdaq composite gained 0.64 percent to finish at a record high of 6,385.04, also touching an intraday all-time peak.

The S&P 500 advanced 0.54 percent at 2,473.83, a record, with Vertex Pharmaceuticals leading the index higher, climbing 21 percent. The index also posted an intraday record. The technology sector also boosted the S&P, which broke above its all-time peak set in March 2000.

The S&P tech sector has been the best-performing sector in 2017 with a 22.8 percent gain.

Among stocks active in corporate news, Morgan Stanley posted higher-than-expected second quarter results across the board, as trading revenue came in above expectations. Other banks like Citigroup, Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan Chase saw their trading businesses struggle in the previous quarter.

IBM weighed on the Dow after its quarterly revenue came in below expectations. The stock dropped 4.2 percent to $147.53, having touched a 13-month low of $146.71.

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IFX Gertrude
post Jul 21 2017, 03:00 AM
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European Stocks Retreat as Euro Firms on Draghi Comments



European stocks dropped as investors claim exporters will suffer due to a stronger euro, following European Central Bank President Mario Draghi's remarks which buoyed the common currency.

The pan-European Stoxx 600 Index closed 0.4 percent lower. The benchmark trimmed a gain that hit 0.5 percent prior to when Draghi said officials will discuss altering the ECB's bond-buying program.

A stronger currency has become a concern for investors amid the second-quarter earnings season, as strategists at Deutsche Bank warned that every ten percent in the euro takes five percent off the STOXX 600's earnings.

Europe's basic resources sector was the largest decliner, losing 1.9 percent, with export-heavy aerospace defense companies and autos all under pressure.

European banks fell 0.4 percent, led lower by a 5.2 percent decline in Nordea's shares. The Nordic region's largest bank by market value dropped after posting second-quarter operating earnings below analysts' estimates. Danske Bank fell 1.4 percent following its quarterly earnings.

Germany's Lufthansa led the travel and leisure sector, which tumbled 8.6 percent. British budget airline easyJet dropped almost six percent following cautious comments on the outlook for summer pricing.

Technology stocks were led higher by Ingenico Group, rising over five percent, after reports that it will buy rival Bambora for 1.5 billion euros. Tags: Eurozone, Stocks, bonds, Equity markets

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IFX Gertrude
post Jul 24 2017, 02:45 AM
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MERCOSUR: Bloc Could Expel Venezuela, Says Argentina Minister



Mercosur will permanently expel Venezuela from the bloc if the country's government advances with its intentions to call for a Constituent Assembly election on July 30, said the Argentinean Foreign Minister Jorge Faurie at the sidelines of the bloc summit in Mendoza.

"Some may read it as an expelling, but at the moment we do not have to discuss if it is a suspension of this or that. We have to talk about the fact that there is no democracy in Venezuela, and we will ratify it if there is no capacity for dialogue," the chancellor told reporters.

Venezuela was suspended from Mercosur for disrespecting the bloc's regulations. Earlier, Argentina President Mauricio Macri said that Mercosur is expecting the early adoption of an electoral calendar.

President Nicol?s Maduro's opponents carried out a 24-hour national strike as a part of the "zero hour" initiative, which seeks the president's resignation.

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IFX Gertrude
post Jul 24 2017, 03:26 AM
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UK Consumers Face Highest Pressure in 3 Years - IHS Markit



The financial situation of British consumers has weakened at its quickest rate in three years in July, with families increasingly shying away from bigger purchases like automobiles, holidays and household appliances, a survey revealed.

Financial data firm IHS Markit said its monthly Household Finance Index fell to 41.8 from June's 43.7, its lowest since July 2014, which reveals a persistent squeeze on household incomes as inflation increases quicker than wages.

IHS Markit said only 27 percent of the households it surveyed expects rates to increase in the next six months, the weakest rate since October. The latest survey also revealed the willingness of households to make large purchases, which has dropped to its weakest since December 2013.

British consumer price inflation hit its highest in almost four years at nearly three percent in May, before softening in June. However, annual wage growth is less than two percent.

Official data set to be released on Wednesday is seen to show that economic growth accelerated only slightly in the three months to the end of June.

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IFX Yvonne
post Yesterday, 07:12 AM
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Australia's Consumer Confidence Strengthens



Australia's consumer confidence improved during the week ended July 23, after falling in the previous two weeks, a weekly survey compiled by the ANZ bank and Roy Morgan Research showed Tuesday.

The consumer confidence index climbed to 115.1 from 112.5 in the preceding week. Moreover, this was the highest score since February.

The increase in confidence was driven primarily by an improvement in consumers' views towards both current and future economic conditions.

The index measuring 'time to buy a major household item' rose 1.8 percent last week. Inflation expectations were unchanged at 4.3 percent on a four-week moving average basis.

"The solid increase in confidence last week is very encouraging and likely reflects another good jobs report along with the RBA's broadly positive assessment of domestic conditions in the minutes of the July board meeting," ANZ's head of Australian Economics, David Plank, commented.

"We expect labour market conditions to continue improving, although at a slower pace, now that the period of catch up between official and survey based measures is largely complete."

"We will be closely watching Governor Lowe's speech and the CPI release out later this week for further insight into the RBA's assessment of the labour market and the course for monetary policy."



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IFX Yvonne
post Today, 07:05 AM
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Japan Producer Prices +0.8% In June



Producer prices in Japan were up 0.8 percent on year in June, the Bank of Japan said on Wednesday - unchanged and in line with expectations.

On a monthly basis, producer prices fell 0.1 percent following the flat reading in May.

Individually, prices were up for transportation and advertising; they were down for leasing and rental.

For the second quarter of 2017, producer prices were up 0.8 percent on year and 0.4 percent on quarter.



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