Successfully transitioning

Equity markets in Asia are enjoying some decent gains overnight, with China and Hong Kong the obvious outperformers, while Europe is also enjoying a positive start on Wednesday.

Choppy trading conditions are still evident this week although the latest Chinese PMIs have provided some cause for more optimism. It was already believed that the transition from zero-Covid to living with it was going smoothly but this survey data suggests businesses are now extremely optimistic about the future.

That bodes well not just for China but regionally as well, as strong demand boosts trade and a resurgence in tourism restores the battered industry. There’s still a long way to go and there could be setbacks along the way but investors will no doubt be encouraged by these early signs.

Those with close economic links with China have seen their currencies perform well in the aftermath of the releases, while the yuan is also trading much stronger on the day. While the initial reopening data may be noisy, a strong rebound will be very welcome after a very challenging 2022.

A timely boost

Not one to miss out on a bump in risk appetite, bitcoin is trading more than 2% higher this morning. It appears to have consolidated around late-February lows in recent days after failing to break key resistance – $24,500-$25,500 – in the middle of the month. That could be a sign of weakness, at least in the short-term, although ultimately it’s hard to imagine that occurring if we do see risk appetite continue to improve.

For a look at all of today’s economic events, check out our economic calendar:

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Craig Erlam

Craig Erlam

Former Senior Market Analyst, UK & EMEA at OANDA
Based in London, Craig Erlam joined OANDA in 2015 as a market analyst. With many years of experience as a financial market analyst and trader, he focuses on both fundamental and technical analysis while producing macroeconomic commentary. His views have been published in the Financial Times, Reuters, The Telegraph and the International Business Times, and he also appears as a regular guest commentator on the BBC, Bloomberg TV, FOX Business and SKY News. Craig holds a full membership to the Society of Technical Analysts and is recognised as a Certified Financial Technician by the International Federation of Technical Analysts.