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Will the positive vibes last?

• Positive tone. Equities rose & bond yields slipped back. No new news was good news for markets. AUD edged higher & outperformed on the crosses.• Business PMIs. European & US PMIs released today. Leading indicators point to a pick up in global industrial activity over coming months.• AU CPI. Australian quarterly inflation due tomorrow. Signs the improvement in core inflation is stalling could push out RBA rate cut expectations. No news is good news with the limited new economic information and a simmering down of Middle East tensions supporting risk sentiment overnight. Equities rose with the US S&P500 (+0.9%)...

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Sentiment swings

• Burst of vol. Middle East tensions generated some vol. on Friday. The initial ‘risk off’ moves faded. US bond yields reversed course. The AUD rebounded.• Lofty USD. US interest rates have repriced a lot recently. Less than 40bps of Fed cuts now assumed in 2024. The USD may need a new driver to go higher.• Event radar. Locally, Q1 CPI is due (Weds). Offshore, Eurozone PMIs (Tues), US GDP (Thurs), US PCE deflator (Fri), & BoJ meeting (Fri) are in focus. Geopolitical tensions generated another spurt of volatility on Friday, although for the most part the knee-jerk ‘risk off’...

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Higher for (even) longer

• Fed speak. Chair Powell endorsed the upswing in rates pricing by noting the lack of further progress on inflation. US yields rise, equities fall.• USD support. The rates outlook is underpinning the USD. AUD touched its lowest level since mid-November with USD trends overpowering China GDP.• Priced in? Markets are now discounting a very ‘hawkish’ Fed interest rate outlook. The lofty USD may need another catalyst to move even higher. Market sentiment has stayed on the defensive as the outlook for ‘higher for longer’ US interest rates continues to sink in. The major European equity markets fell overnight (EuroStoxx50...

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USD upswing continues

• Shaky sentiment. Middle East jitters were compounded by stronger US retail sales. Higher US bond yields weighed on equities & supported the USD.• AUD lower. Yesterday’s modest AUD recovery unwound overnight. The AUD is near its 2024 lows. USD upswing is pressuring other currencies.• China & Fed speakers. China Q1 GDP released today. Several US Fed members also due to speak. The list includes Fed Chair Powell. After the market mood picked up during yesterday’s Asian trade sentiment soured overnight. The familiar forces of jitters about the situation in the Middle East after Israel vowed to respond and outlook...

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Middle East tensions flare up

• Negative vibes. Sentiment soured on Friday as Middle East concerns rose. Equities & bond yields lost ground. The stronger USD pushed down the AUD.• Middle East. The situation in the Middle East remains fluid. Developments will be front of mind for investors at the start of the new week. Will oil prices spike?• Event radar. US retail sales due tonight. Several Fed members speaking this week. Across the region, China GDP, NZ CPI & AU jobs report are due. Risk sentiment ended last week on the backfoot, and geopolitical developments over the weekend point to further potential short-term turbulence....

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