Yesterday's trading session was full of important macroeconomic data. The reason for growth of the euro was the data on the flash manufacturing PMI in Germany and the Eurozone, which increased respectively to 56.3 and 53.9. The balance of payments also improved to 23.5 billion euros compared with 19.2 billion euros forecasted. Consumer confidence in the euro area came out 1 point better than the forecast and reached -12.
Statistics from China was negatively perceived by the market. The flash manufacturing PMI has fallen below the key level of 50 points and reached 49.6. The index of leading economic indicators declined to 0.4% in January, compared with 1.3% on the previous month.
Statistics in the U.S. have been mixed. The number of jobless claims totaled 326 thousand and exceeded the forecast by 5 thousand. Existing home sales in the U.S. in December increased less than was expected to 4.87 million. Flash manufacturing PMI in the U.S. in January dropped to 53.7, with growth forecast to 55.2. While this figure is higher than 50, it indicates a positive trend in the manufacturing sector. Today won’t be published any really important macroeconomic data.
The British pound continued its upward movement, which began after the publication of data on unemployment in the country, which fell to 7.1%.
The Japanese yen also strengthened against the weakening U.S. dollar. We expect an upward correction after the strong decline of the USD/JPY.
Commercial crude oil inventories in the U.S. grew by 1.0 barrels, with growth forecast for 0.7 million, Inventories of distillers at the same time declined by 3.2 million barrels to 120.7 million, which contributed to the continued growth of quotations on the American benchmark Light Sweet . Despite this, we maintain a long-term negative outlook for oil due to the record level of production capacity in the U.S. and increasing supply from the Middle East.
The price of gold has strengthened near the highest level in two months. The growth of interest in gold yesterday was caused by the decline on the U.S. and European stock markets. The weakening of the U.S. dollar supported the bulls. Despite of weak demand for gold, investors prefer to use it as a defensive asset during downward movements on the stock markets. We expect a correction after raising prices to the level of 1265 dollars per troy ounce.