Chinese economic data gives cause for concern

Share Markets:

US equity markets were firmer on a mix of political and economic news.

Janet Yellen took another step closer to winning approval to become the chairwoman of the US Federal Reserve while in the Senate, rules that have blocked government business for many years were changed, allowing smoother passage of legislation introduced by the President.

The Dow rose 0.7% while in Europe the FTSE100 was flat, the Dax fell 0.1% and the French CAC40 fell 0.3%.

Foreign Exchange:

The USD was stronger against the yen as expectations of an early 2014 or even late 2013 tapering of the US bond buying program took hold.

At the same time, the euro picked up against the USD as Eurozone officials discounted the possibility of a negative deposit rate policy by the ECB. The AUD weakened overnight and begins the day lower against the majors.


There was little movement on US and European bond markets overnight despite the movement in equity markets.

In Australia, yields at the long end of the curve moved higher with 10 year bond yields up 7 basis points to 4.34% and years up 3 basis points to 3.14%.


Oil was up on the better labour market news out of the US while gold eased back very marginally. Copper rose as demand from China continues to be strong and as the outlook for the US economy continues its snail's pace improvement.


No data released.


The HSBC manufacturing PMI slipped from 50.9 to 50.4 in the flash estimate for November.

The drop was below consensus expectations (50.8), however, the reading was still the second highest in seven months.

While the fall may raise some concerns that the Chinese economy could be losing some momentum, it continues to be on track to grow close to the authorities' target of mid-7%.


The Eurozone PMI 'composite' slipped from 51.9 to 51.5 in the advance November report.

This is the second month of slippage taking the PMI back to where it was in August.

The French PMI advance readings for November were quite a bit weaker than expected, pointing to ongoing contraction in the French economy in Q4, whereas the German PMI readings were stronger, so the subdued headlines mask re-emerging divergence between the two largest eurozone member states.

Eurozone consumer confidence slipped from -14.5 to -15.4 in the advance November report. It was the first month in a year that the index did not move higher.


The Bank of Japan (BoJ) left policy rates unchanged to maintain its pledge of increasing the money base at an annual pace of 60 to 70 trillion yen.

It maintained its view of a moderate recovery. Board member Kiuchi proposed to set the 2 percent inflation target a medium to long-term goal, but was voted down 8-1.

New Zealand:

ANZ job ads rose 4.5% in October, the strongest monthly gain since early 2012.

It followed a 1.3% revised increase in September, and suggests that the New Zealand labour market is gaining some traction.

United Kingdom:

UK public sector net borrowing was £6.4bn in October, compared to £6.2bn a year earlier.

Total public sector debt is just over £1.2trn, about of a third of which is held by the Bank of England. The Chancellor's Autumn statement on December 5th will provide updated forecasts.

Separately, the UK CBI industrial trends survey improved from -4 to 11 in November, its highest in 18 years

United States:

Janet Yellen's nomination as Fed chair was approved by the Senate Banking Committee, with a 14-8 vote. Full Senate approval is expected in the week of December 9th.

US Philadelphia Fed factory index fell from 19.8 to 6.5 in November, lower than 48 of the 49 forecasts in the Bloomberg survey. The detail showed orders slowing from 28 to 12, shipments down from 20 to 6 and jobs slumping from 15 to 1.

US initial jobless claims fell 21k to 323k in the week ended 16/11, possibly distorted by the Veterans' Day holiday.

US producer price index fell 0.2% in October to be up just 0.3% over the year.  Gasoline was down almost 4%, but auto prices rose 1.7% and food was up 0.8%. The core PPI rose an above trend 0.2% for a 1.4% annual pace.