Last week showed all the makings of 'Risk-On' price action - equities traded higher with the S&P 500 hitting record highs. US yields were stable and the yield curve got a little steeper over the week. The US dollar weakened substantially into the close on Friday after the US economy added far fewer jobs in April than anticipated.
The addition of 266k jobs in a month would be considered very good in any other market environment, but the expectation was for close to a million - following March's 916k number (which was revised lower to 770k as well). The unemployment rate ticked higher to 6.1% and about 8.5 million of the 22 million people who lost their jobs after March 2020 are still looking for work or have dropped out of the labour force.Fed speakers last week continued to play their part in insisting that there was significant slack in the economy and that any and all inflation pressures would be transitory. Corporate earnings reports are now including instances of price rises as well, with commodities looking to outperform this year across all verticals - metals, agriculture and energy. Gold broke free of the 1800 resistance level last week and that should give it some more room to run. Iron Ore, Copper and Soybean futures are pushing to record highs on demand recovering and supply struggling to keep up.Crude has been bid for most of this year, with the news of ransomware attack on Colonial Pipelines in the US on Friday sending gasoline futures higher in Asia this morning. Tanker freight rates are going higher too as traders scramble to secure transportation/storage to overcome the downstream issue.Ahead this week, we get more data on the continuously evolving US Economy with CPI coming in on Wednesday and Retail Sales coming in on Friday. Both are expected to indicate a recovery in demand and a negative shock, though unlikely, would be cause for reevaluation.
May 10, 2021
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