Stocks and dollar little changed as markets await trade details

US stocks opened flat as investors await further trade details and have a muted response to China’s first day of the National People’s Congress summit in Beijing.  The overall risk appetite with mode was mixed with better than expected PMI data from Europe and China’s lowering of their economic growth target to the weakest level in almost three decades.  The focus in the New York session will be on US data.  The shutdown delayed December home sales reading is expected to show continued weakness, the final services PMI print is to confirm the recent rebound and monthly budget statement is expected to show a surplus.

USD

The greenback rose for a fifth consecutive day as markets remain convinced the US will outperform the rest of the world.  The dollars pared some of its gains Europe delivered a nice surprise of better than expected data.  The narrative for Europe however remains weak and expectations are for the ECB later in the week to downgrade their outlook and possible discuss new long-term loans.

Stocks

Decelerating earnings growth, a dovish Fed, near end to the US-China trade war, and accommodative policy from other major economies have taken US stocks to a critical resistance level.  The market may only be satisfied if we see a clear trade deal that starts immediately and does not give to many punitive powers to the US that will see us back to square one once China fails to comply.  It was never going to be a perfect deal, but the markets need to be convinced we will not consistently see the US and China returning to the negotiating table.

Oil

Crude prices are seeing a bid after China did not disappoint and signaled they will continue to support the economy.  The downgrade of their forecast was followed by stimulus announcement that will help the domestic economy. Chinese tax cuts and eventually further monetary policy cuts will keep China attractive and should be supportive for commodity prices.

Gold

Too much optimism is killing gold prices.  Europe could be stabilizing following better data across the board this morning, China’s policy summit is unveiling fiscal stimulus that should help alleviate growth concerns, and the trade war is approaching a climatic conclusion that have many expecting a deal will be done.

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Ed Moya

Ed Moya

Senior Market Analyst at OANDA
With more than 20 years’ trading experience, Ed Moya is a market analyst with OANDA, producing up-to-the-minute fundamental analysis of geo-political events and monetary policies in the US, Europe, the Middle East and North Africa. Over the course of his career, he has worked with some of the world’s leading forex brokerages and research departments including Global Forex Trading, FX Solutions and Trading Advantage. Most recently he worked with TradeTheNews.com, where he provided market analysis on economic data and corporate news. Based in New York, Ed is a regular guest on several major financial television networks including BNN, CNBC, Fox Business, and Bloomberg. He is often quoted in leading print and online publications such as the Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post. He holds a BA in Economics from Rutgers University. Follow Ed on Twitter @edjmoya ‏
Ed Moya