The bottom chart is also in 5 minute intervals showing the price vs a 147 interval turtle chart.
- Global stocks are trading lower with the European Euro Stoxx 50 index down -0.67% and June S&Ps down -5.50 points. The dollar and Treasuries are stronger and most commodities sold off after the biggest earthquake hit Japan in a century. Crude oil fell below $100 a barrel for the first time in over a week and copper plunged to a 2-3/4 month low. The 8.9-magnitude quake also unleashed a 30-foot high tsunami with over 20 countries, including the US west coast, issuing tsunami warnings. Insurance and reinsurance stocks are sharply lower amid the Japanese quake with Munich Re and Swiss Reinsurance, the world's biggest reinsurers, both down over 5%. The extra yield investors demand to hold Irish, Portuguese, and Spanish securities instead of benchmark 10-year bunds widened ahead of a meeting of EU leaders in Brussels later today to discuss measures to tackle the debt crisis, while anti-government demonstrators in Saudi Arabia are advocating a "Day of Rage" today with police in anti-riot vehicles patrolling Riyadh.
- The Asian stock markets today closed lower with Japan down -1.72%, Hong Kong -1.55%, China -1.00%, Taiwan -0.87%, Australia -1.17%, Singapore -1.04%, South Korea -1.44%, India -0.84%. Japan's Nikkei 225 Stock Index sank to a 1-1/4 month low after an 8.9 magnitude earthquake struck northeast of Tokyo and spawned tsunami warnings. Most stocks sold-off after the quake, although building stocks such as Fukuda surged 30% and another builder Ueki, jumped 23%. Crude oil tumbled as Japanese refiners shut plants after he quake and the BOJ set up an emergency task force and said it will do everything it can to provide ample liquidity. China's inflation and industrial production exceeded forecasts in Feb, which prompted PBOC Governor Zhou Xiaochuan to say that interest rates will be used to curb inflation, a sign of additional interest rate hikes. Feb China consumer prices were unchanged at 4.9% y/y, stronger than expectations of 4.8% y/y, while Feb China industrial production climbed 14.9% y/y. stronger than expectations of +13.3% y/y.
- June S&Ps this morning are trading down -5.50 points. The US stock market yesterday tumbled after China's export growth slowed, Spain's credit ratings were cut and weekly US jobless claims rose more than expected: Dow Jones -1.87%, S&P 500 -1.89%, Nasdaq Composite -1.84%. The Dow, S&P 500 and the Nasdaq all posted 1-1/4 month lows. Bearish factors for stocks included (1) carry-over weakness from a plunge in European stocks on concern the European sovereign-debt crisis may worsen after Moody's Investors Service cut Spain's credit rating by one level to Aa2, saying the government has underestimated the cost of shoring up the banking industry, (2) the slowest pace of growth in Feb China exports in 15 months along with the unexpected decline in Jan German exports, which bolsters concern that the global economic recovery may be faltering, (3) the larger-than-expected increase in weekly initial US unemployment claims (+26,000 to 397,000 versus expectations of +8,000 to 376,000, (4) the larger-than-expected Jan US trade balance which widened by the most in 7 months (-$46.3 billion versus expectations of -$41.5 billion), and is negative for US Q1 GDP growth, and (5) AP reports that Saudi police opened fire on protestors, which fuels concern the civil unrest that has plagued North Africa and the Middle East has spread to Saudi Arabia.
- Bullish factors included (1) the decline in oil prices for a third day, which eases concern that rising energy costs will derail the global economy, (2) Fed data that showed Q4 US household wealth climbed +3.9% q/q and +16.6% y/y to $56.8 trillion, which may boost US consumer confidence and spending, and (3) the tumble in the 10-year T-note yield to a 1-1/4 month low of 3.36%.
- Alcoa (AA) fell 1.9% in pre-market trading after the prices of most metals plunged following the Japanese earthquake.
- Berkshire Hathaway (BRK), which owns reinsurer General Re, slid 1.2% in pre-market trading as it follows European insurers lower.
- June 10-year T-notes this morning are trading up +12 ticks at a 1-1/4 month high as the global plunge in stocks spurs safe-haven buying of Treasuries. T-note prices yesterday rallied to a 1-1/4 month high on increased safe-haven demand after stocks slumped when Spain's credit rating was cut along with a larger-than-expected increase in weekly jobless claims: TYM11 +18.5, FVM11 +11.2, EDU11 +1.0. The 10-year T-note yield fell to a 1-1/4 month low of 3.36%. Bullish factors included (1) increased safe-haven demand for Treasuries after global stock markets plunged when Moody's Investors Service cut Spain's credit rating by one level to Aa2, which signals the European debt crisis may worsen, (2) the larger-than-expected increase in weekly initial US unemployment claims (+26,000 to 397,000 versus expectations of +8,000 to 376,000), (3) the larger-than-expected Jan US trade balance which widened by the most in 7 months (-$46.3 billion versus expectations of -$41.5 billion), and is negative for US Q1 GDP growth, (4) strong demand for the Treasury's $13 billion auction of 30-year T-bonds that had a bid-to-cover ratio of 3.02, the most in 10-1/2 years and well above the 12-auction average of 2.51, and (5) increased safe-haven demand for Treasuries after reports that Saudi police opened fire on protestors, which fuels concern the civil unrest that has plagued North Africa and the Middle East has spread to Saudi Arabia. A bearish factor was Fed data that showed Q4 US household wealth climbed +3.9% q/q and +16.6% y/y to $56.8 trillion, which may help boost US consumer confidence and spending.
- The dollar index this morning is trading higher and at a 1-1/2 week high with the dollar/yen -0.67 yen and the euro/dollar -0.04 cents. The dollar index yesterday rallied to a 1-1/2 week high on concern the European sovereign-debt crisis may worsen: Dollar Index +0.555, USDJPY +0.239, EURUSD -0.01114. Bullish factors included (1) increased safe-haven demand for the dollar after global stock markets slumped when Moody's Investors Service cut Spain's credit rating by one level to Aa2, saying the government has underestimated the cost of shoring up the banking industry, and (2) weakness in the euro which fell to a 1-week low against the dollar on concern that European debt risks are rising after the cost to insure Spain's government bonds rose to a 1-month high, while the cost to insure Portugal's debt rose to a 2-month high and the cost to insure Greek debt climbed to a record high. Bearish factors included (1) the larger-than-expected Jan US trade balance which widened by the most in 7 months and is dollar negative, and (2) the larger-than-expected increase in weekly US jobless claims, which may prompt the Fed to maintain its overly easy monetary policy as the US labor market continues to struggle.
- April crude oil prices this morning are trading down -$2.77 a barrel and April gasoline is -5.88 cents per gallon. Crude oil and gasoline prices yesterday tumbled as the dollar strengthened and the European sovereign-debt crisis worsened although prices recovered some of their losses after the AP reported that Saudi police fired on protestors: CLJ11 -$1.68, RBJ11 -0.76. Bearish factors include (1) the rally in the dollar index to a 1-1/2 week high, which discourages investment demand in commodities, (2) the action by Moody's Investors Service to cut Spain's credit rating, which suggests a worsening of the European debt crisis, and (3) the slowest pace of growth in Feb China exports in 15 months along with the unexpected decline in Jan German exports, which bolsters concern that the global economic recovery and fuel-demand growth will slow. Bullish factors included (1) stepped up attacks by Libyan leader Qaddafi who sent warplanes to bomb rebel held oil refineries, which may further reduce Libya's crude production, and (2) concerns over the spread of civil unrest to Saudi Arabia with protestors calling for a "Day of Rage" protest there on Friday along with AP reports that Saudi police had opened fire on a rally in the kingdom's east.
Global Financial Calendar
|0830 ET||Feb retail sales expected +1.0% and +0.7% less autos, Jan +0.3% and +0.3% less autos.|
|0830 ET||New York Fed President William Dudley speaks at the Queens Chamber of Commerce about the economy.|
|0955 ET||Preliminary Mar U.S. University of Michigan consumer confidence expected 1.0 to 76.5, Feb +3.3 to 77.5.|
|1000 ET||Jan business inventories expected +0.8%, Dec +0.8%.|
|0200 ET||Feb German wholesale price index, Jan +1.2% m/m and +9.4% y/y.|
|0300 ET||Revised Feb German CPI (EU harmonized) expected no change at +0.6% m/m and +2.2% y/y.|
|0430 ET||Feb UK PPI input prices expected +1.5% m/m and +14.4% y/y, Jan +1.7% m/m and +13.4% y/y.|
|0430 ET||Feb UK PPI output prices +0.6% m/m and +5.2% y/y, Jan +1.0% m/m and +4.8% y/y.|
|0430 ET||Feb UK PPI output core prices expected +0.4% m/m and +3.4% y/y, Jan +0.7% m/m and +3.2% y/y.|
|0515 ET||ECB Executive Board member Lorenzo Bini Smaghi speaks at the Institute of Advanced Studies in Lucca, Italy.|
|0700 ET||Feb Canada net change in employment expected +25,000, Jan +69,200. Feb unemployment rate expected 0.1 to 7.7%, Jan+0.2 to 7.8%.|