Oil slips closer to six-year low on Japan data, oversupply

Posted by Forexsq 11 days ago (http://www.reuters.com)
img Oil fell towards six-year lows on Monday on data showing the economy of Japan, the world's third-biggest oil consumer, contracted in the second quarter.

The global oversupply picture was exacerbated by another weekly jump in U.S. oil rig additions on Friday, hinting at growing production, and news that Oman produced a record-breaking 1 million barrels per day in July.

U.S. crude CLc1, or West Texas Intermediate (WTI), for September was trading 65 cents lower at $41.85 a barrel at 1155 GMT, close to its lowest level in more than six years.

Brent futures LCOc1 briefly reversed losses on news that Kuwait's 200,000-barrel-per-day Shuaiba refinery had been shut down following a fire.

Brent for October reached an intra-day high of $49.44 a barrel shortly after news of the fire but had fallen back to $49.05 by 1155 GMT, down 14 cents on its previous close. The Brent September contract expired on Friday.

Over the past two weeks, U.S. crude prices have fallen by more than 10 per

Japanese Stocks Day Trader Made $34 Million

Posted by Forexsq 6 hours ago (http://www.bloomberg.com)
img Japanese Stocks Day Trader Made $34 Million, While a lot of investors were hitting the panic button Monday, a Japanese day trader who’d made a big bet against the market timed the bottom almost perfectly and narrated a play-by-play of the trade to his 40,000 Twitter followers. He claims to have walked away with $34 million.

As financial markets got crazy this week, many people turned cautious. Some were paralyzed. Not the 36-year-old day trader known by the Internet handle CIS.

“I do my best work when other people are panicking,” he said in an interview Tuesday, about an hour after winding up the biggest trade of a long career betting on stocks. He asked that his real name not be used because he’s worried about robbery or extortion. To support his claims, he shared online brokerage statements showing his trades second by second.

CIS had been shorting futures on the Nikkei 225 Stock Average since mid-August, wagering it would fall. By the market close on Monday, a paper profit

Pound Climbs Most in Week as UK Inflation Unexpectedly Accelerates

Posted by Forexsq 10 days ago (http://www.bloomberg.com)
img The pound rose the most in a week against the dollar after U.K. inflation unexpectedly accelerated and a core measure of price growth jumped to a five-month high.

Sterling strengthened against all 31 of its major peers as the Office for National Statistics said annual inflation quickened to 0.1 percent in July. The rate was forecast to remain at zero for a second month in a Bloomberg survey of economists. Annual core inflation reached 1.2 percent, up from 0.8 percent in June. U.K. government bonds declined.

The Bank of England has been discouraged from raising interest rates by slow growth in consumer prices, with annual inflation slipping below zero in April for the first time in more than half a century. Policy maker Kristin Forbes, who hasn’t voted for higher borrowing costs, warned Aug. 16 that keeping record-low rates for too long could harm the economic recovery.

“These numbers make it a little more likely that the hawks will be more vocal as we get to the end of the ye

RBA Minutes of Monetary Policy Meeting August 2015

Posted by Forexsq 10 days ago (http://www.rba.gov.au)
img Members noted that economic growth in Australia's major trading partners had remained close to its long-run average, although growth had eased a little in the June quarter. The forecast for growth in 2015 and 2016 had been revised down slightly, but growth was expected to remain around its long-run average. The increase in global industrial production had slowed over the past year or so, particularly in the Asian region, and this had contributed to lower commodity prices. Members noted that, as a result, the forecast for Australia's terms of trade had been revised down since that presented at the May meeting. Globally, core inflation had been stable in year-ended terms over recent months at rates below the targets of most central banks. Monetary conditions had remained very accommodative.

In China, GDP growth had picked up in the June quarter to be 7 per cent in year-ended terms. However, growth in a range of other indicators of activity had moderated in the first half of 2015. The

Oil prices could sink to $15 a barrel

Posted by Forexsq 9 days ago (http://money.cnn.com)
img American drivers could soon be partying like it's 1999.

Oil prices have already taken a dramatic fall that's saved consumers big time at the pump. Last week, crude tumbled below $42 a barrel, down from $100 last year.

One big-name investor is predicting an even sharper drop.

"There is no evidence whatsoever to suggest we have bottomed. You could have $15 or $20 oil -- easily," influential money manager David Kotok told CNNMoney.

A further decline to $15 a barrel would be huge. Oil hasn't traded that low since early 1999, when gasoline at the pump was selling for under $1 a gallon.

Kotok's views on the economy and financial markets are closely watched. The 72-year-old co-founder of Cumberland Advisors manages more than $2 billion in assets and hosts an annual invite-only fishing trip that doubles as an economic summit. Known as "Camp Kotok," the event lures leaders in finance to Maine each summer.

"I'm an old goat. I remember when oil was $3 a barrel," said Kotok, who

Stocks falls in volatile trading after Fed minutes

Posted by Forexsq 9 days ago (http://www.reuters.com)
img U.S. stocks fell in choppy trading on Wednesday as minutes from the latest Federal Reserve meeting highlighted concern over the state of the global economy, driving markets to question the likelihood that the Fed will raise rates next month.

The minutes showed policymakers continued to express broad concerns about lagging inflation and the weak world economy even as the U.S. job market improved further. Market expectations for a Fed hike in September fell from one in two to roughly one in three after the minutes were published.

Utilities stocks .SPLRCU, sought by investors when Treasuries yields are seen remaining lower for longer, sharply outperformed the benchmark index with a 0.4 percent gain.

Energy stocks .SPNY posted the most losses on the S&P 500 as crude oil fell 5 percent on the day, even as the U.S. dollar also weakened.

“It looks like based on commodity prices, China, wages not really picking up, that [Fed officials] are not getting any closer to meeting their i

FOMC - Minutes of the Federal Open Market Committee

Posted by Forexsq 9 days ago (http://www.federalreserve.gov)
img In a joint session of the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) and the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, the manager of the System Open Market Account (SOMA) reported on developments in domestic and foreign financial markets. The deputy manager followed with a discussion of System open market operations conducted by the Open Market Desk during the period since the Committee met on June 16-17. The Desk's overnight reverse repurchase agreement (ON RRP) operations continued to provide a soft floor for money market interest rates. The deputy manager also updated the Committee on plans for tests of the Term Deposit Facility in August and of term RRPs at the end of the third quarter.

The staff next summarized some of the recent steps the System had taken to prepare further for the process of normalization of monetary policy. The staff also proposed that future changes in the FOMC's target federal funds rate range as well as associated changes in related administered inter

Gold prices will plunge to 350 dollar an ounce

Posted by Forexsq 28 days ago (http://money.cnn.com)
img Gold's big plunge may have only just begun.

A prominent gold forecaster predicts the yellow metal will drop to a mere $350 an ounce, a level unseen since 2003. It's dramatically lower than what most experts are currently calling for.

But Claude Erb's prediction might have merit. Back in 2012, Erb, a former commodities trader at TCW Group, co-authored a landmark research paper with Duke University professor Campbell Harvey that was early to predict gold's downfall. At the time, gold was fetching north of $1,600 an ounce. Now it's trading below $1,100.

The paper used historical analysis to show that if gold is an inflation hedge -- as many people believe -- then it's extremely expensive at current levels.

"Gold is no more or less volatile than stocks or anything else. It can be wildly overvalued, and it's very overvalued right now," Erb told CNNMoney.

Gold could crash more: Erb and Harvey's research suggests that gold's fair value is about $825 an ounce. That would repres

U.S. Jobless claims edge up; labor market still improving

Posted by Forexsq 8 days ago (http://www.reuters.com)
img The number of Americans filing new applications for unemployment benefits unexpectedly rose last week, but the trend remained consistent with solid labor market momentum that could keep the Federal Reserve on track to raise interest rates this year.

Initial claims for state unemployment benefits increased 4,000 to a seasonally adjusted 277,000 for the week ended Aug. 15, the Labor Department said on Thursday.

Claims for the prior week were revised to show 1,000 fewer applications received than previously reported. Economists had forecast claims slipping to 272,000 last week. A Labor Department analyst said there were no special factors influencing the data and no states had been estimated.

Prices for U.S. Treasuries fell slightly after the data, while stock index futures were pointing to a lower open on Wall Street. The dollar dipped against a basket of currencies.

Minutes from the Fed's July 28-29 policy meeting published on Wednesday showed the U.S. central bank upbeat o

ISM and Manufacturing PMI leak for July

Posted by Forexsq 25 days ago (http://uk.businessinsider.com)
img ISM's latest manufacturing report for July leaked on Monday morning.

The reading came in at 52.7, below the consensus forecast of 53.5 that was also the prior month's print and a year-to-date high. A reading above 50 indicates expansion, and so despite the slowdown, US manufacturing is still in good shape.

The employment measure fell to 52.7 from 55.5. New orders increased slightly to 56.5 from 56.0. Production jumped to 56.0 from 54.0.

The report had been scheduled for release at 10:00 a.m. ET. After the numbers crossed the wires, the Institute for Supply Management published the report on their website.

A respondent in the survey for the report noted a "summer slow-down", and others bemoaned lower oil prices with the expectation that they'll fall further.

In a note to clients after the data, Capital Economics' Adam Collins wrote, "Looking ahead, the manufacturing sector will probably continue to struggle as the dollar has appreciated further recently and overseas dema

Nigeria Vows to Fight Forex Betting on Naira Devaluation

Posted by Forexsq 8 days ago (http://www.bloomberg.com)
img Nigeria’s central bank vowed to fight off speculators taking bets that the naira will be devalued after Kazakhstan became the latest country to abandon control of its currency.

“We haven’t seen any reason so far to institute a change in the foreign-exchange policies,” Ugochukwu Okoroafor, a spokesman for the Central Bank of Nigeria, said by phone from Abuja on Thursday. “The preponderance of foreign currency in the country has led to speculative attacks on the naira. People who have done it in the hope we’ll devalue will be hurt.”

After imposing trading restrictions in February to prevent dollars from fleeing Africa’s largest economy, importers have been unable to pay suppliers, a thriving black market has sprung up in foreign banknotes and a collapse in government oil revenue amid sliding crude prices has left teachers unpaid.

Kazakhstan’s decision to drop its peg for the tenge, which led to a 23 percent drop against the dollar, intensifies pressure on countries to let their

RBA Holds Rates, Omits Reference to Need for Currency Drop

Posted by Forexsq 24 days ago (http://www.bloomberg.com)
img Australia left its interest rates unchanged and omitted a reference to the need for the local dollar to fall further. The currency jumped more than 1 percent.

Central bank Governor Glenn Stevens and his board kept the cash rate at a record-low 2 percent, as predicted by markets and economists following reductions in May and February.

Stevens said in Tuesday’s statement the exchange rate “is adjusting to the significant declines in key commodity prices” after it fell through 73 U.S. cents in July. It is the first time in 18 months that he hasn’t signaled the currency was too high.

“It does look like they’ve watered down their jawboning of the currency,” said Su-Lin Ong, head of Australian economic and fixed-income strategy at Royal Bank of Canada in Sydney. “If you draw a longer bow it kind of waters down their easing bias because part of the reason you have such a bias is to keep pressure on the currency.”

Australia has so far had little success in stimulating industries a

U.S. Existing home sales rise to eight-year high

Posted by Forexsq 8 days ago (http://www.reuters.com)
img U.S. home resales rose more than expected in July to their highest level since 2007, a sign the U.S. housing market was heating up and could provide more support for the overall economy.

The National Association of Realtors said on Thursday existing home sales increased 2 percent to an annual rate of 5.59 million units.

June's sales pace was revised slightly lower to 5.48 million units from the previously reported 5.49 million units.

Economists polled by Reuters had forecast home resales falling to a 5.44 million-unit pace last month. Sales were up 10.3 percent from a year ago.

A string of strong reports on the U.S. housing market supports the view that the U.S. economy is building up steam and closing in on the point when the Federal Reserve will hike interest rates to keep it from overheating.

The gain in home resales in July was driven by increases in America's South and West, regions that were hit hard by the housing bust of the 2007-09 recession.

Nationwide, the

Bank of England maintains Bank Rate at 0.5%

Posted by Forexsq 22 days ago (http://www.bankofengland.co.uk)
img The Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) sets monetary policy in order to meet the 2% inflation target and in a way that helps to sustain growth and employment. At its meeting ending on 5 August 2015, the MPC voted by a majority of 8-1 to maintain Bank Rate at 0.5%. The Committee voted unanimously to maintain the stock of purchased assets financed by the issuance of central bank reserves at £375 billion, and so to reinvest the £16.9 billion of cash flows associated with the redemption of the September 2015 gilt held in the Asset Purchase Facility.

CPI inflation fell back to zero in June. As set out in the Governor’s open letter to the Chancellor, around three quarters of the deviation of inflation from the 2% target, or 1½ percentage points, reflects unusually low contributions from energy, food, and other imported goods prices. The remaining quarter of the deviation of inflation from target, or ½ a percentage point, reflects the past weakness of domestic cost gro

Who's Next in the Currency Market's Race to the Bottom?

Posted by Forexsq 7 days ago (http://www.bloomberg.com)
img Kazakhstan just intensified the global currency war.

By allowing a 23 percent plunge in the tenge, central Asia’s biggest oil exporter signaled a new wave of devaluations in developing nations forced to compete against weaker currencies. Egypt and Nigeria look the most vulnerable to John-Paul Smith, the ex-Deutsche Bank AG strategist who predicted Russia’s 1998 crisis and this year’s China’s rout.

To Bernd Berg, a London-based strategist at Societe Generale SA, African currencies like the naira and those of former Soviet Union countries “will be next.”

Developing nations are under increasing pressure from weaker currencies in China and Russia, plunging prices for commodity exports and the prospect of higher U.S. interest rates. Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev, who earlier this year pledged to avoid any sharp depreciation, said today’s adjustment was essential to avoid a recession.

“The major commodity exporters are the most vulnerable,” Smith, who founded Ecstrat, a

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