Friday - last edited Friday
- Chinese trade data showed good growth in imports and exports in 2017, underscoring a global economy that continues to tick over nicely.
- US earning optimism and higher oil prices helped push Asian equity markets higher.
- The Euro edged up as the ECB signaled an end to its massive stimulus.
- As expectations of a potential Chinese crackdown on cryptocurrency mining gathers speed, Bitmain Technologies is said to be eyeing sites in Canada, both energy rich and with a low ambient temperature which helps keep servers cool on a relatively cheap budget.
A mixed bag overnight saw Japanese stocks stutter despite new record highs on the Dow. While both Topix and Nikkei lost ground amid a strengthening Yen, the story was more positive elsewhere, as Chinese, Hong Kong, and Australian indices gained over the session. On the data front, the Chinese Yuan denominated trade balance figure rose to the highest figure since the start of 2016.
UK, US and Europe: Looking ahead, a quiet European calendar sees markets focus on the US retail sales and CPI figures as a potential driver for the FX markets. Inflation will no doubt provide a main driver for Fed monetary policy, yet with the FOMC utilising the core PCE method of measurement, today’s CPI reading will perhaps hold less value than would be the case for most other countries. The corporate calendar sees a focus on the banks, with JP Morgan Chase, Wells Fargo, and Blackrock reporting.
Daily FX Economic Calendar (times GMT) [Link]
Bovis Homes saw a marked improvement in customer satisfaction, with the firm completing on 3,645 projects. The firm expect a significantly improved profitability in 2018, supported by strong forward sales. Balance sheet and operational restructuring has now been completed, putting the firm on track for to maintain overheads below 5% of revenue 2018.
Mitchells & Butlers saw sales growth slow since November, with bad weather largely counteracting a strong holiday period. The firm saw like for like sales fall to 1.6% for the past seven weeks, compared with the 2.3% over the prior period.
B&M saw a sharp increase in business over the festive period, with total sales in the three-months to December 23 rising 22.7% compared with the prior year. The firm’s decision to add 32 new stores over the last nine-months has helped much of this growth, with domestic sales rising 12.9%.
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