The US dollar fell broadly overnight against most major currencies but was able to recoup some of those losses as the New York session began. Data from the Labor Department reported jobless claims declined 12,000 to 545,000 last week, while those still on the benefit rose to 6.23. The Commerce Department reported better than expected data as housing starts and permits rose 1.5% in August to their highest level since November, mainly due to a rebound in multifamily homes. The Philadelphia Fed Business Activity also reported business activity index was 14.1 in September vs. 4.2 in August. Reading above zero indicates expansion in the region's manufacturing sector.
The euro touched a one-year high against the dollar overnight as risk appetite increased among investors. Data from the European Union's statistics office Eurostat reported Eurozone exports continued to recover in July and drove the trade surplus higher than expected. The trade balance was a 6.8 billion euro surplus, up from 2.3 billion in June.
The British pound rallied overnight on resilient risk appetite but pulled back slightly after weaker than expected UK retail sales data. Many analysts expected a 0.1% rise on the month, but data from the Office for National Statistics said August's unchanged reading took the annual rate of growth in retail sales volume down to 2.1%. Data from the Confederation of British industry reported manufacturing orders fell slightly less than expected.
The Japanese yen weakened vs. the dollar overnight as risk-averse investors sold off their riskier assets, but recouped some of those losses after encouraging signs from the Bank of Japan. The BOJ upgraded its assessment of the economy as exports and output bounced back. The BOJ announced today they would keep their rates on hold at 0.10%.
The Canadian dollar remains strong despite weaker than expected economic news. Government data showed Canadian consumer prices fell by 0.8% in August. Although oil prices has slightly softened to $72 a barrel, gold hit a 18-month high thus supporting the recent loonie rally.
The Australian dollar jumped to a fresh 1-year high vs. the US dollar, and reached a 13-year high against the pound. The Aussie rally has been buoyed mostly by investors' confidence for riskier assets such as stocks and commodities increasing. The New Zealand dollar has also continued its rally buoyed by firmer commodity prices.
10-Year Treasury Note Yield: 3.447%
Dow Jones Industrial Average: 9,823.75 + 32.04