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No data? No volatility! Aside from equities tracking their Wall Street counterparts, Asian session trading saw tight ranges across the board.

  • Japan’s national core CPI (y/y) slows down from 1.0% to 0.9% in November
  • U.K.’s GfK consumer confidence worsens from -13 to -14 in December
  • U.S. House adds $5 billion to spending bill to fund Trump wall
  • Japan’s Cabinet approves record $900 billion FY 2019 budget to soften sales tax impact

Major Events/Reports:

Mixed risk sentiment

With no new economic theme to price in, the Asian bourses mostly took cues from their Wall Street counterparts.

That is, they were also dragged lower by threats of a U.S. government shutdown, the prospect of higher borrowing rates in the U.S., and global growth slowdown concerns.

A few hours into the session we found out that the U.S. Congress passed a spending bill that covers Trump’s $5 billion wall. Sadly for the bulls, it didn’t make a big dent on the bears’ momentum.

  • Nikkei is down by 1.40% to 20,107.2
  • A SX 200 is down by 0.92% to 5,455.5
  • Shanghai index is down by 1.01% to 2,510.775
  • Hang Seng is down by 0.21% to 25,570.2

Commodities were a bit more bullish, with gold taking advantage of the investors’ risk aversion while crude oil benchmarks got a boost from OPEC members possibly making deeper production cuts than markets had expected.

  • Gold is up by 0.02% to $1,259.92 per troy ounce
  • Brent crude oil is up by 0.21% to $54.831 per barrel
  • U.S. WTI is up by 0.48% to $46.226 per barrel

Major Market Mover(s):

AUD

There were no direct catalysts that boosted the Aussie today, but the comdoll might have received some support from higher gold demand during the session.

AUD/USD is up by 7 pips (+0.10%) to .7113; AUD/JPY is up by 13 pips (+0.16%) to 79.20; AUD/CAD is up by 8 pips (+0.08%) to .9606; GBP/AUD is down by 11 pips (-0.06%) to 1.7783, and AUD/NZD is up by 13 pips (+0.12%) to 1.0501.

JPY

Japan’s weaker-than-expected core inflation report, along with some profit-taking from the previous sessions’ sharp moves pushed the yen crosses a few pips higher across the board.

USD/JPY is up by 8 pips (+0.07%) to 111.35; NZD/JPY is up by 4 pips (+0.06%) to 75.42; EUR/JPY is up by 5 pips (+0.04%) to 127.44; CAD/JPY is up by 6 pips (+0.08%) to 82.44, and CHF/JPY is up by 14 pips (+0.12%) to 112.78.

Watch Out For:

  • 7:00 am GMT: Germany’s GfK consumer climate (10.3 expected, 10.4 previous)
  • 7:45 am GMT: France’s consumer spending (0.0% expected, 0.8% previous)
  • 9:30 am GMT: U.K.’s current account (-21.7B GBP expected, -20.3B GBP previous)
  • 9:30 am GMT: U.K.’s final GDP (q/q) expected to maintain 0.6% reading
  • 9:30 am GMT: U.K.’s public sector borrowing (7.0B GBP expected, 8.0B GBP previous)
  • 9:30 am GMT: U.K.’s revised business investment (q/q) (-1.2% expected and previous)
  • 12:00 am GMT: BOE’s quarterly bulletin