Market Update & Important Indicators:
U.S. markets were closed for the Martin Luther King holiday. U.S. investors will be paying attention Later this week, whereby focus will likely turn to U.S. corporate earnings and the Jan. 20 inauguration as investors await clarity on the new administration's policy priorities. "I think we have unprecedented political uncertainty," said Mr. Gkionakis. "We simply don't know what May is going to say tomorrow or what Trump is going to say in the inauguration speech."
In Europe, stocks fell while the British pound dropped to three-month lows Monday amid escalating concerns over the U.K.'s access to the European Union's single market. London's FTSE 100 index snapped a 14-session winning streak, while the Stoxx Europe 600 slumped 0.8% in its worst day since November, led lower by the banking, insurance and auto sectors. British newspapers reported over the weekend that Prime Minister Theresa May could hint at an end to the country's participation in the single market in a speech on Tuesday. The British pound was down around 1.1% at $1.2055 late afternoon in London after dropping to $1.1987 earlier in the session, according to FactSet, around its lowest since the "flash crash" in October.
The Nikkei Stock Average closed at its worst levels of this young 2017 and Chinese stocks saw a last-hour slump which some considered akin to panic selling as Asian stocks continue to sag after start-of-year strength. With a lack of significant data releases to anchor moves and U.S. markets to be closed later Monday for a holiday, the choppy trading conditions from last week prevailed. While Japanese stocks were the story for most of the day in hitting their worst levels of January amid outsized gains for the yen, Chinese action grabbed attention ahead of its close. Just as the regular trading in Tokyo ended, Chinese stocks began slumping as their last hour of trading began. The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index was down 2.2% for the day at its worst level of the session — hitting four-month lows — and the growth-stock-heavy ChiNext slumped as much as 6% before finishing off 0.3% and 3.6%, respectively. The Nikkei Stock Average closed down 1%, and export stocks lagged amid the yen's strength. Elsewhere in the region, Korea's Kospi ended off 0.6% while the Taiex in Taiwan and Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index each fell 0.9%.
Australian shares recovered Monday from last week's weakness, lifted by mining companies on the back of stronger commodity prices and gains in utilities. Rising for the first session since Wednesday, the S&P/ASX 200 finished up 27.3 points, or 0.5%, at 5748.4. Most sectors were stronger, led by a 1.4% gain in the materials subindex. Bank stocks also advanced, climbing back from weakness Friday as brokers questioned valuations following strong gains over the last two months. China's benchmark iron-ore futures rallied as much as 8% Monday alongside gains in steel futures, as investors continued to focus on Beijing's sustained efforts to reduce capacity. Gold was also stronger, rising above US$1,200 a troy ounce for the second time since last week's news conference by U.S. President-elect Donald Trump.
The London Metal Exchange's three-month copper contract was down 0.2% at $5,901/t in midmorning trade. Other base metals were lower at start of the week. Zinc was down 1.5% at $2,734/t, lead was down 2.0% at $2,263/t, tin was down 0.6% at $21,037/t, nickel was down 1.8% at $10,212/t, whilst aluminium was down 0.7% at $1,798/t.
Recent Contacts & Presentations:
Emmerson Resources Ltd (ERM), Syntonic Ltd (SYT), MZI Resources Ltd (MZI), Resolute Mining Ltd (RSG), Capricorn Metals Ltd (CMM), Eve Investments Ltd (EVE), Australian Mines Ltd (AUZ), Heron Resources Ltd (HRR), St George Mining Ltd (SGQ), Threat Protect Australia Ltd (TPS), Paringa Resources Ltd (PNL), The Gruden Group Ltd (GGL), Primary Gold Ltd (PGO), Vault Intelligence Ltd (VLT), Botanix Pharmaceuticals Ltd (BOT) Orthocell Ltd (OCC), Strandline Resources Ltd (STA) Dragontail Systems Ltd (DTS), ABM Resources Ltd (ABU), Acacia Coal Ltd (AJC), Troy Resources Ltd (TRY), Hazer Group Ltd (HZR), Berkeley Energia Ltd (BKY), Sino Gas & Energy Holdings Ltd (SEH)