It's "strange" that the exact same set of concerns that we noted 24 hours ago in our Thursday morning wrap and which sent global stocks and futures higher yesterday as we described in "Stock Euphoria Prevails Despite Gathering G-7, EM Clouds; Dollar Slides", today those same Emerging Market and G-7 (or rather G-6+1) clouds have led to a sea of red in this morning market and futures monitor.
We close what until today was a mostly euphoric, if for no real reason, week with U.S. stock index futures sliding with Nasdaq 100 minis leading the declines, following Asian and European equities lower.
Of course, trade tensions are front and center on investors’ minds ahead of the Group of Seven leaders summit in Quebec, where President Donald Trump is set to meet with trading partners, or rather "insult" them (see "Trump Lashes Out At Macron, Trudeau Ahead Of "G6+1" Summit") After Trump’s overnight Twitter tirade vs. Canada and France soured the risk tone further. Furthermore, as Bloomberg reports this morning, Trump will only stay as long as necessary in Toronto, and not a moment longer: the US president will leave the G-7 gathering at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday and put Everett Eissenstat, his deputy assistant for international economic affairs, in charge for the remaining sessions.
Adding to the overnight pain, Apple tumbled as much as 2.3% in German ADR trading after the Nikkei reported that the company warned its supply chain of a drop of around 20 percent in new iPhone component orders.
Meanwhile, the EM rout in the past 48 hours has accelerated, dragging both Brazil and India - which unexpectedly hiked rates yesterday - sending the MSCI EM futures index lower by 3% over the past 2 days.
And as EMs tumbled just hours after Argentina got a $50 billion bailout "standby" loan, the largest in IMF history, capital scrambled out of risk assets and into safe havens, sending the dollar higher, while 10-year Treasury yields dropped as low as 2.89%.
The selloff hit all global stocks, with the Stoxx Europe 600 Index declining as almost all sectors were the red after more underwhelming data releases from France and Germany continued a run of poor economic news in the euro area, following a sharp drop in Chinese and Hong Kong shares earlier. The FTSE MIB is currently the European underperformer, with this risk-off tone exacerbated by internal political tensions hitting Italian assets, currently down 1.7%.
The materials sector (+1.1%) is the current underperformer on softer base metals. Significant stock specific news comes from BT Group (+0.3%), with CEO Gavin Patterson announcing his resignation, with Severn Trent’s (-1.1%) Garfield touted as the successor.
Meanwhile in Asia, the Nikkei 225 (-0.5%) was downbeat as participants digested weaker than expected GDP data which printed at a contraction and in-line with the preliminary reading. Elsewhere, China's Shanghai Comp. (-1.3%) and HK's Hang Seng (-1.8%) were the laggards after PBoC operations resulted to a weekly net liquidity drain of CNY 300bln and with participants cautious in anticipation of the Chinese trade data which turned out to be mostly better than expected, although by then the selling had already taken its toll.
With risk off dominating early trading, the dollar jumped, advancing versus all major peers in early European trade, while 10-year Treasury yields edged lower to 2.91%; Treasury futures surged to day’s high around the time of very large block trade.
At the same time, the euro weakened for the first time in five days following worse-than-expected German industrial production data and as early London flows saw good- sized clips by yen buyers.
In emerging market FX, South Africa’s rand tumbled and bond yields soared as disappointing economic data this week persuaded traders that there’s no chance of a rate increase any time soon.
On Thursday, Brazil’s central bank’s swap sale Thursday wasn’t enough to boost the real, and the country’s stock index slid 3%; for now the Brazilian real is poised at 3.90, just shy of the 4.00 level which BofA predicted is where full blown EM contagion would emerge.
In commodities, oil erased some of the gains seen on Thursday trade, with both WTI and Brent down 0.5%. The fossil fuel is seeing some pressure from a rising USD, as well as a general risk off mood ahead of the G7 summit. In the metals scope, Gold is up on the day as a result of this risk-off tone, with the yellow metal up 0.15%. Copper has retreated for the first time in 6 sessions after hitting 4 ½ year highs following supply disruptions, with profit taking
pressuring the metal down 1% on the day. Steel has slipped from 6 month highs, but these losses are being capped by ongoing supply concerns in China, the metal is currently down 1%
Next up on the docket will be a potentially rocky summit of the G-7, where trade disputes are set to showcase a divide between the U.S. and longtime allies. Data include final wholesale inventories for April. No major companies are scheduled to report earnings
Bulletin Headline Summary From RanSquawk
Top Overnight News
Asian stocks traded in the red following a lacklustre performance on Wall St, where the major indices finished mixed as tech underperformed and the Nasdaq pulled back from record levels, although the energy sector was underpinned on oil gains. In addition, lingering tensions concerning US tariffs which threatens to isolate US President Trump at the G7, as well as a Trump tweet tirade against EU and Canada, added to the gloom. ASX 200 (-0.2%) traded indecisive as upside in energy and financials were counterbalanced by weakness in miners, while Nikkei 225 (-0.5%) was downbeat as participants digested weaker than expected GDP data which printed at a contraction and in-line with the preliminary reading. Elsewhere, Shanghai Comp. (-1.3%) and Hang Seng (-1.8%) were the laggards after PBoC operations resulted to a weekly net liquidity drain of CNY 300bln and with participants cautious in anticipation of the Chinese trade data which turned out to be mostly better than expected, although by then the selling had already taken its toll. Finally, 10yr JGBs were flat despite the cautiousness in Japan, while the BoJ’s Rinban operation was also largely ignored with the total amount at a relatively reserved JPY 360bln. PBoC skipped open market operations for a weekly net drain of CNY 300bln vs. last week's CNY 410bln net injection.
Top Asian news
European bourses are all in the red (Euro stoxx 50 -0.86%) as markets exude a risk off tone before the G7 summit later today. This comes after US President Trump struck a confrontational tone vs. Canada and France overnight on Twitter. The FTSE MIB is currently the underperformer, with this risk-off tone exacerbated by internal political tensions hitting Italian assets, currently down 1.7%. The materials sector (+1.1%) is the current underperformer on softer base metals. Significant stock specific news comes from BT Group (+0.3%), with CEO Gavin Patterson announcing his resignation, with Severn Trent’s (-1.1%) Garfield touted as the successor. A Commerzbank and Deutsche Bank merger was rebuked by Deutsche Bank shareholders.
Top European news
In currencies, the USD has staged a sharp recovery in early European trade with the DXY back above 93.50 ahead of the G7 summit. Markets are operating with a degree of caution thus far as lingering tensions concerning US tariffs threatens to isolate US President Trump at the G7. This also comes amid Trump’s latest tweet-tirade against the EU and Canada in which the President accused EU & Canada of using massive trade tariffs and trade barriers against US, and warned both nations to remove them or they will be matched. Subsequently, the broad flight to quality has seen some support for USD and out-muscling of it’s major counterparts with the exception of JPY. USD/JPY is back below 109.50 and its 10DMA at 109.45 with the Japanese currency being guided more by the broader risk-tone rather than weaker than expected GDP data which printed at a contraction and in-line with the preliminary reading. EUR/USD has given back some of its recent gains and is back below 1.1800 as part of a broader USD move with the ECB now in their blackout period. In terms of market expectations, consensus looks for around a 33% chance of Draghi announcing an enddate for the Bank’s purchases next week with almost 50% seeing July as a more opportune time. Note, this morning saw yet further disappointing data from the Eurozone with German industrial output falling short of expectations. AUD has also fallen victim to the firmer USD with overnight trade data from China unable to prop up the currency. As a reminder, Chinese trade data saw a smaller than anticipated surplus but firm export/import components suggests that recent trade rhetoric from the US has been unable to make a noteworthy impact on data thusfar. From a technical perspective, the next key level to the downside for AUD/USD is at 0.7576 which marks the 38.2% fib of the move from 0.7413 (May 11th low) to 0.7677 (6-week high printed this Wednesday).
In commodities, oil is erasing some of the gains seen on Thursday trade, with both WTI and Brent down 0.5%. The fossil fuel is seeing some pressure from a rising USD, as well as a general risk off mood ahead of the G7 summit. In the metals scope, Gold is up on the day as a result of this risk-off tone, with the yellow metal up 0.15%. Copper has retreated for the first time in 6 sessions after hitting 4 ½ year highs following supply disruptions, with profit taking pressuring the metal down 1% on the day. Steel has slipped from 6 month highs, but these losses are being capped by ongoing supply concerns in China, the metal is currently down 1%.
Looking at the day ahead, the April wholesale trade sales and inventories data are also due. Meanwhile the ECB’s Mersch and Visco will speak throughout the day. Finally the G7 Leaders' Summit in Quebec is due to begin, ending on Saturday.
US Event Calendar
DB's Jim Reid concludes the overnight wrap
I have a friend who works as a pilot and every flight I get on for that airline I always listen out to hear whether he is captaining my plane. Around 99.5% of the time he is not which makes sense given how many pilots they have. However yesterday I heard his dulcet tones as I was squeezed between two people somewhere near the back of a busy flight from Vienna. Unfortunately he was telling the passengers that we were 30 minutes delayed taking off and we could roam about the plane. I went up to the cockpit and said hello. For the next 30 minutes I took over as Captain, wore the cap and chatted in the cockpit. Pictures are available on request. He then made sure I had an upgrade into business. Moral of the story is to know more pilots.
On that basis I better hope that pilots don’t get taken over by robots one day. On that note yesterday, my team published the latest edition of Konzept, Deutsche Bank Research's flagship magazine. The title of this latest edition is “Will I take your job…or work with you?” and works best with the visual of the menacing stare on the front cover. Robots and rapid automation is the big theme running through this edition. In the opening piece I reiterate my view that a 35 year cycle of depressed global wages is coming to an end due to the levelling off (and an eventual decline) in the size of the global labour force after a multi-decade surge. However a common pushback is that automation or robotics is on the brink of adding to the woes of the worker. History tells us otherwise though, as it’s now 250 years since the first industrial revolution and constant labour saving improvements has had no structural long-term impact on the unemployment rate. So we say, learn to love your robot colleague rather than feel threatened.
I’m pretty confident that a robot would end up scratching their head as much as me doing my job at the moment as there is no way an algorithm can predict a lot of things that are going on in the world today. Whether it be the tweets of Donald Trump, the reaction of Kim Jong-un or Chinese President Xi Jinping, the actions of populists in Italy or perhaps the most unpredictable of the lot where Brexit will end up. More on Brexit later but perhaps something more predictable in recent times was that as global central bank liquidity was withdrawn you would expose weak spots in a world previously cushioned by ultra loose monetary policy for so long. In particular as we’ve discussed before a Fed tightening cycle alone always historically brings some kind of financial crisis. EM seems to have been at the epicentre of this over the last couple of months without the contagion necessarily spilling over into wider markets.
Argentina and Turkey have been heavily in the spotlight of late and now its Brazil’s turn to join in to some degree. The Ibovespa tumbled as much as -6.3% intra-day yesterday before paring losses to close -2.98%, dragged down by uncertainties from the upcoming October election and concerns for a slowing economy. The yields on the 5y and 10y bonds (USD based) jumped 24bp and 16bp respectively.
Meanwhile the Brazilian Real weakened to the lowest since March 16 (-1.4%; -18% CYTD), although losses were slightly pared back as the central bank sold more FX swap contracts yesterday to reduce pressure on the local currency, marking the second time this week where it has gone above the usual daily offer. Later in an unscheduled press meeting, the Central bank chief Mr Goldfajn noted the bank will use all tools available to provide liquidity to FX markets, such as dipping into the country’s $380b FX reserves if necessary, but added the bank will not use monetary policy to control FX rates.
Meanwhile Turkey went against all expectations to hike the one-week repo rate by 125bps. Indeed not a single economist in the Bloomberg survey expected a hike of that magnitude and in fact the consensus was for no change at all. That willingness to be proactive was taken kindly by markets with the Turkish Lira rallying over 2% at one stage, before closing +1.57%. Turkey's main equity market also finished +2.03% while hard and local currency 10y bonds rallied 15.4bps and 37.0bps respectively.
Whilst clearly not an EM country, Italy’s bond market continues to show some similarities to it in terms of trading patterns. Since the intraday lows seen earlier this week, 2yr yields are now 95.8bps higher (+25.8bp yesterday), with 10yrs 55.5bps higher (+12.3bp yesterday). It’s been a relatively quiet week politically but there’s been some chatter about big supply next week and also fallout from the ECB comments earlier this week, that next week could see the announcement that QE is ending. This was a hawkish surprise given recent events (although only leaves us back to where expectations were a few weeks ago) and Italy has felt the brunt of this in Europe.
Staying in the world of sovereigns, let’s move to the U.K. and Brexit. Although not an immediate market moving event, one of the most significant stories of the last 24 hours has been the release from the UK Government of the Irish backstop proposal. After what sounded like a heated debate between UK PM Theresa May and Brexit Secretary David Davis - with the latter at one stage supposedly threatening to resign - a fudge in the wording of the backstop proposal was incorporated to avert a crisis. The critical reference was "the UK expects the future arrangement to be in place by the end of December 2021 at the latest". That appeased both Davis and May by committing to a date but not in the legal sense, hence the fudge. Legally though this backstop could commit the U.K. to remain in the Customs Union and other areas of the Single Market indefinitely unless an alternative solution to the Northern Irish border has been found. The text will now be put before the EU government heads later this month where there's already been some mixed feedback. It’s getting increasingly possible that we’ll get well into the next decade without knowing what type of Brexit we’re going to get by which time anything could happen to politics and/or public opinion or indeed the EU. Food for thought. Sterling chopped around with the various headlines but ultimately retraced losses to finish +0.07%. Gilt yields also rose 2.5bps although the FTSE 100 faded to finish slightly lower (-0.10%).
In the meantime the rest of the world is likely to turn its focus over to Quebec today with the G7 meeting set to get underway. To be fair it's looking more and more like a G6+1 given the constant stream of comments from world leaders in recent days with President Trump seemingly isolating himself from the rest of the world order. Expect posturing and headlines aplenty but a big question mark at this stage is whether or not there will be a joint communique, with that looking very much up in the air still. The meeting kicks on into tomorrow so we'll have to see what the weekend brings. Indeed it’s been reported this morning by Bloomberg that Mr Trump will leave early from the summit which is bound to raise eyebrows.
Markets will also have on eye on next week's packed calendar which includes central bank meetings from the Fed, ECB and BoJ as well as inflation data from around the world. All the action in markets over the last two days has been in bond markets following that coordinated signalling from ECB officials that next week's meeting is very much a live one for the QE endpoint debate. Yesterday was more of the same with European bond yields, which was higher across the board with the exception of Spain (-2.9bp). Across the region, core 10y bond yields rose c2bp (Bunds +1.9bp; Gilts +2.5bp; OATs +2.4bp) while BTPs (+12.3bps) and Bonos (+7.9bps) underperformed. The two-day move for Bunds now is +11.5bps which is the biggest two-day move since June 2017. Treasuries were boosted by a flight to quality, partly due to concerns over EM and trade tensions with the 10y yields down as much as c9bp intraday before closing at 2.921% (-5.1bp), which more than reversed Wednesday’s sell off. Meanwhile, the Euro (+0.22%) rose for fourth consecutive day and closed at $1.180 for the first time in 3 weeks.
Moving along, equity markets were largely muted which probably reflects the fact that they didn't have much to work with yesterday. The Stoxx 600 closed -0.24% although did fade from early gains. The same was true for the DAX (-0.15%) with some suggesting the much softer than expected German factory orders weighed on sentiment (more on that below). In the US the most notable mover was the Nasdaq which retreated from its record high (-0.70%) and finally caved in to some profit taking after rising +3.32% in the four sessions prior to that. The S&P 500 edged -0.07% lower, weighed down by tech and materials stocks. It's worth noting that Brent oil was a big mover yesterday too, up 2.6% following a drop in Venezuela oil exports and Reuters reporting that OPEC may not discuss an oil supply boost at its upcoming meeting on 22 June.
This morning in Asia, markets are trading modestly lower with the Nikkei (-0.40%), Kospi (-0.58%), Hang Seng (-1.23%) and Shanghai Comp. (-1.25%) all down. Elsewhere, Argentina has secured the largest stand-by arrangement from the IMF ($50bn) to support its economy. As part of the deal, Argentina will now target a new 2019 fiscal deficit of 1.3% of GDP (vs. 2.2% previous) and an inflation of 17%. Over in the US as mentioned above, President Trump noted he will leave the G7 Summit one day earlier, to head off to Singapore where he may sign an accord with Kim to formally end the 1950’s Korean War at their 12th June meeting. Datawise, China’s May trade surplus was less than consensus at $24.9bn (vs. $33.3bn), mainly due to a stronger than expected growth in imports (26% vs. 18% expected).
Now turning to central bankers speak, the dovish BOE Deputy Governor Ramsden who voted against a rate hike in November seemed more upbeat and signalled a shift towards the MPC’s majority view, where further rate hikes “over the forecast period” will be necessary, although he added this was contingent on the incoming data. Elsewhere, he said that while its ‘early days”, data so far suggests the slowdown in 1Q was “temporary” with a period of “unusually subdued” wage growth coming to an end. Further, he is now “more comfortable with the balance of risks around the MPC’s central assumptions than he had been previously”.
Before we take a look at today’s calendar, we wrap up with other data releases from yesterday. In the US, the April consumer credit increased at the slowest pace in seven months and was below expectations at $9.3bln (vs. $14bln expected), mainly due to a slowdown in non-revolving credit. The weekly initial jobless claims (222k vs. 220k expected) and continuing claims (1,741k vs. 1,735k expected) prints were slightly higher than consensus. In Europe, Germany’s April factory orders fell for the fourth consecutive month and was much weaker than expected (-2.5% mom vs. 0.8% expected), weighed down by domestic orders (-4.8% mom) and big ticket items in the capex sector. DB’s
Marc Schattenberg noted that while the hard data from the retail and industrial production sectors point to a sustained German growth cycle, he sees only limited catch-up potential for GDP in the second quarter. Elsewhere, the final reading for the Euro area’s 1Q GDP was confirmed at 0.4% qoq and 2.5% yoy. Meanwhile, the UK’s May Halifax house price index was up 1.5% mom (vs. 1% expected), leading to an annual growth of 1.9% yoy. Finally, Italy’s April retail sales was below market at -0.7% mom (vs. 0.1% expected) while France’s trade deficit was narrower than expectations at -$4.95bln (vs. -$5.1bln).
Looking at the day ahead, the April trade and industrial production in Germany along with Q1 labour costs data are due, while in France April industrial and manufacturing production is due out. In the US the April wholesale trade sales and inventories data are also due. Meanwhile the ECB’s Mersch and Visco will speak throughout the day. Finally the G7 Leaders' Summit in Quebec is due to begin, ending on Saturday.