Australia: The Australian Dollar has opened weaker this morning following a raft of news releases overnight across the globe. Yesterday’s Chinese data met with expectations with the industrial production for April slightly lower at 17.8% from the 18.1% in March. The retail sales growth accelerated, while the fixed investment spending growth remained strong and the CPI inflation firmed to 2.8% year on year. Overnight saw the release of the Australian Federal Budget for 2010-11 which showed a Deficit of $40.8bn or 2.9% of GDP in 2010-11. The Government is expecting to return to surplus in 2012-13 though this is based on the mining super tax being passed through the Senate. Base metals were weaker overnight with copper down 1%, ally off 2% and nickel down 1.8%. Gold rose strongly, by US$32.00 to be trading at US$1,233 per ounce on safe haven buying while oil fell slightly to be trading at US$76.00 a barrel. On the cross rates the AUD fell against the JPY to 83.00 while the AUD/EUR outperformed on the back of the weakening EUR to be trading at 0.7070.
Majors: The USD strengthened overnight as investors sold down the EUR with concerns the nearly $1 trillion rescue package for the euro-zone will take a long time to take effect. In The UK overnight, Conservative leader David Cameron took over as Britain’s prime minister after forming a coalition with the Liberal Democrats, with Nick Glegg becoming deputy. Overnight in the US, US Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Mary Schapiro said the agency’s enforcement unit has issued subpoenas in an investigation of last week’s stock plunge. Data out of the US overnight saw the US NFIB small business optimism for April reported an increase to 90.6 from 80.6, a 19 month high, with expected sales and earnings also showing an improvement.