New job ad growth halted in July

Australia: 

ANZ job ads fell by 0.8% in July, following an increase of 0.4% in June. 

For the year to July, job ads are up 6.9%, down from an increase of 8.0% in the year to June.

Share Markets: 

US share markets were slightly down overnight, taking a breather from recent record highs.

The Dow and S&P500 indices were both down 0.1%. The optimism from the strong US payrolls report on Friday eased, although a lift in oil prices drove energy stocks higher.

Interest Rates: 

The quieter session saw US treasuries little changed. Yields on 10-year notes fluctuated between a 1.57-1.61% range and settled at 1.59%.

Yields on Australian 3-year and 10-year bond yields were also little changed at 1.42% and 1.97%, respectively.

Foreign Exchange:

The US dollar index held onto most of its gains after the strong jobs report on Friday, which supported expectations for a rate hike from the US Federal Reserve.

The Australian dollar however, continued to scale higher despite US dollar strength, and the interest rate cut from the RBA last week.

It rose as high as 76.7 US cents overnight, probably supported by a lift in iron ore prices.

Commodities: 

Oil prices rose to its highest in two weeks on talk that OPEC will hold informal talks next month. In a statement OPEC said it expects markets to be balanced before long and that the drop in prices is temporary.

Among other commodities, iron ore prices lifted after iron ore imports hit their second highest on record.

China:

China's trade data released yesterday disappointed markets.

The trade surplus widened to US$52.3bn in July, up from a surplus of US$48.1bn in June. Exports fell 4.4% in the year to July, while imports were down 12.5% over the same period.

The pace of decline in imports was the largest since February, raising concerns about domestic demand in China. For the year to July, imports from Australia fell 22%.

Europe:

German industrial production grew 0.8% in June, rebounding from a revised 0.9% decline in the previous month. 

Despite the rebound, it appears that factory activity will be weak over the June quarter.

Japan:

The current account surplus narrowed to ¥974.4bn in June, from ¥1809.1bn in May.

United States: 

Powell, a member of the Federal Reserve Board of Governors said he favoured a "very gradual" path of increases in interest rates.

Powell noted that the US economy was at risk of a prolonged phase of slow growth that pointed to the need for lower interest rates than previously expected.



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