The dollar has remained firm against all the other majors following some volatile price action on the release of the FOMC Minutes on Wednesday, while stocks and commodities are lower as investors look towards the prospect of higher interest rates. US yields hit their highest level in 5 years, with the 10’s trading at 2.957%. The minutes indicated that the Fed have grown more positive on the economic outlook, citing “substantial underlying economic momentum,” and are increasingly optimistic about achieving their inflation target. Earlier in the day, Sterling took a tumble after the release of the January Unemployment data. The UK jobless claims dropped -7.2k in January, better than expectation of 2.3k but the unemployment rate rose to 4.4% in the three months to December, above expectation of 4.3% and the first rise in unemployment rate since August 2016. Unemployment jumped 46k in the final quarter of 2017, sharpest increase in almost five years.
Thursday will begin with the Asian session with a couple of fed speakers Kashkari and Quarles, which may provide some action ahead of Europe, when the ECB Minutes of the last meeting, the German IFO Business Climate/Expectations and the Provisional Q4 UK GDP will be in focus (exp 0.5% mm, 1.5% yy). The US then gets the weekly Jobless Claims, the Kansas Fed Mfg Activity for Feb, and more Fed speakers, this time Dudley/Bostic. Have a good day.
|INDICES / COMMODITIES|
|OIL (WTI): 61.10|