Morning Notes

19/11/2018 - Argonaut Morning Note

The S&P 500 gained 0.2% to 2736 on Friday, however steep losses from earlier in the week pushed the index to its first weekly loss for November, the Dow Jones added 0.5% to 25413; US Vice President, Mike Pence sharpened U.S. attacks on China during a week of summits which ended Sunday, most notably with a call for nations to avoid loans that would leave them indebted to Beijing; The European Union is unveiling the first bloc-wide rules to prevent foreign investments from threatening national security, as Chinese acquisitions foster political unease; Aluminium producers will need to build additional smelting capacity outside of China as inventories are expected to run down over the next 2-3 years, according to Rio Tinto Group; Oil companies including Chevron Corp. and Royal Dutch Shell Plc pledged more than $100 million to support private investment in the Permian Basin (Texas) and New Mexico as the region struggles with the effects of booming production.

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16/11/2018 - Argonaut Morning Note

U.S. stocks rose for the first time in six days, with beaten-down technology shares leading the rebound on speculation trade tensions will ease. The Dow Jones added 0.8% to 25289 whilst the S&P 500 gained 1.1% to 2730; The U.S. plans to raise tariffs on Chinese imports in January of 2019, with president Donald Trump and China’s Xi Jinping likely at best to agree on a “framework” for further talks to resolve trade tensions at an upcoming meeting; Zinc rose to the highest level in two weeks as demand continues to outstrip production and inventories tracked by the LME sank to the lowest levels in a decade. Oil prices rose slightly as tension over U.S. sanctions against Saudi Arabia countered a jump in American crude stockpiles; UK Prime Minister, Theresa May has won the support from her cabinet for the U.K. and European Union to agree on the draft Brexit treaty; Gold prices are drawing support from a rebound in demand for exchange-traded funds backed by gold, countering a strong dollar and rising U.S. interest rates. The US gold price increased 0.2% to 1213.0 US$/oz.

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15/11/2018 - Argonaut Morning Note

Declines in financial and technology stocks, along with lingering worries about slowing global growth, dragged U.S. stocks lower overnight, the Dow Jones fell 0.8% to 25081 whilst the S&P 500 decreased 0.8% to 2702; Global oil prices increased for the first time in 13 trading sessions on growing expectations that OPEC may cut output 1.4 million barrels per day, the IEA has left is forecast for global demand growth for 2019 unchanged at 1.3 million barrels per day; Base metal prices remained steady overnight on the London Metals Exchange as concerns over weak retail sales in China largely offset positive sentiment associated with better-than-expected production and investment data. Zinc added 0.8% whilst nickel fell 0.3%; Major currencies were stronger against the US dollar in US and European trade, the Aussie dollar rose from near US71.86 cents to near US72.35 cents in late US trade; The ASX fell steadily yesterday nearing October lows and underperformed the rest of the Asia Pacific, the ASX All Ords finished down 1.7% to 5822.

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14/11/2018 - Argonaut Morning Note

The Dow Jones fell 0.4% to 25286 and the S&P 500 fell 0.1% as a resolution to the US- China trade war remained elusive and oil prices plummeted the most in 3 years, dragging the energy sector lower; Base metal prices were mixed on the London Metals Exchange, Copper rose 0.2% on reports that China and the US have restarted trade talks, Zinc declined the most by 0.7%; Natural gas futures jumped above $4 per million British thermal units for the first time in almost four years as cold shrouded most of the U.S., stoking concern that unusually low stockpiles will fall short of heating needs this winter; Kazakhstan’s ambitious plan to list stakes in its most-prized state assets is finally underway after the country’s uranium giant, Kazatomprom floated in London and Astana with a valuation of $3 billion; A sharp drop in commodity prices prevented Australia's stock index from shaking off sharp early declines, making it the worst-performing market in the Asia-Pacific yesterday, down 1.7% to 5923.

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13/11/2018 - Argonaut Morning Note

 U.S. stocks started the week on a sour note, with tech shares tumbling. The S&P 500 fell 2% to 2726 whilst the Dow Jones declined 2.3% to 25387; The US dollar began the week higher as concerns over global economic growth led to an equity market sell off; The US Commerce Department is deliberating on whether to impose tariffs on automobile imports to protect national security; Base Metal prices fell by up to 2.5% on the London Metals Exchange with lead down the most; Nickel declined to a fresh low this year after stockpiles in China rebounded while the country’s steel prices remain weak; Economists are forecasting the People’s Bank of China will cut interest rates with reductions expected as early as 2019;  China’s Sinopec plans to boost natural gas supply by 18% for their coming winter to 18.2 BCM.

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