Gains keep on coming for the U.S. equity market, which locked in its third straight record finish on Tuesday and looks poised to open Wednesday's session in the green. The S&P 500 futures are trading four points, or 0.1%, above fair value, while the Dow futures are up 75 points, or 0.3%.
The U.S. Dollar Index has received some attention this morning; it's down 0.5% at 89.43, hitting a fresh three-year low. The greenback has been in a downward trend for about a year amid signs of a pickup in global economic growth, which could prompt foreign central banks to dial back their ultra-accommodative policy stances.
However, this morning's push to a new multi-year low came after Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said the Trump administration is a fan of "bilateral trading agreements" and spoke in favor of a weaker dollar, saying it's "good for trade." The greenback is down 0.3% against the euro (1.2338), 1.1% against the pound (1.4152), and 0.7% against the yen (109.53).
Meanwhile, U.S. Treasuries are under pressure, sending yields higher across the curve; the benchmark 10-yr yield is up three basis points at 2.65%.
Investors will receive the FHFA Housing Price Index for November (Briefing.com consensus +0.4%) and Existing Home Sales for December (Briefing.com consensus 5.70 million) at 9:00 AM ET and 10:00 AM ET, respectively. The weekly MBA Mortgage Applications Index crossed the wires earlier this morning, showing an increase of 4.5%.
Elsewhere, equity indices in the Asia-Pacific region finished Wednesday mixed, with Japan's Nikkei (-0.8%) showing relative weakness, while the Euro Stoxx 50 is flat.
In U.S. corporate news:
- Texas Instruments (TXN 111.45, -8.44): -7.0% after reporting its slowest revenue growth in four quarters.
- General Electric (GE 17.16, +0.27): +1.6% after reaffirming its guidance for 2018, which overshadowed below-consensus earnings and revenues.
- United Continental (UAL 72.00, -5.97): -7.7% despite beating earnings estimates.
Reviewing overnight developments:
- Equity indices in the Asia-Pacific region ended Wednesday on a mixed note. Japan's Nikkei -0.8%, Hong Kong's Hang Seng +0.1%, China's Shanghai Composite +0.4%, India's Sensex +0.1%.
- In economic data:
- Japan's January Manufacturing PMI 54.4 (expected 54.3; last 54.0). December trade surplus JPY90 million (expected surplus JPY270 billion; last surplus JPY360 billion). December Imports +14.9% year-over-year (expected 12.3%; last 17.2%); +9.3% year-over-year (consensus 10.1%; last 16.2%). November Leading Index 108.3 (expected 108.6; last 108.6)
- Australia's MI Leading Index 0.3% (last 0.1%)
- New Zealand's Credit Card Spending +6.3% year-over-year (expected 9.1%)
- In news:
- The yen rallied to its session high as the dollar fell to a fresh three-year low after U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin spoke in favor of a weaker dollar.
- Nikkei reported that Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's cabinet expects that achieving a primary surplus will take until 2017, which is two years longer than previously expected.
- Reports out of China indicate that cities will begin issuing GDP targets with Shanghai and Beijing reportedly expecting 6.5% growth in 2018.
- Major European indices hover near their flat lines while the UK's FTSE (-0.5%) underperforms as the pound continues reclaiming its post-Brexit vote loss, having gained 600 pips since the start of 2018. France's CAC -0.2%, Germany's DAX unch.
- In economic data:
- Eurozone January Manufacturing PMI 59.6 (expected 60.4; last 60.6) and Services PMI 57.6 (expected 56.5; last 56.6)
- Germany's January Manufacturing PMI 61.2 (expected 63.2; previous 63.3) and Services PMI 57.0 (expected 55.6; last 55.8)
- UK's December Claimant Count Change 8,600 (expected 5,400; last 12,200). November Unemployment Rate 4.3%, as expected (last 4.3%). November Average Earnings Index + Bonus 2.5%, as expected (last 2.5%)
- France's January Manufacturing PMI 58.1 (expected 58.7; last 58.8) and Services PMI 59.3 (expected 58.9; last 59.1)
- Spain's December PPI +1.8% year-over-year (last 3.1%)
- In news:
- Brexit Minister David Davis said that a deal on a transition period should be reached by March.
- European Central Bank President Mario Draghi was quoted as saying the central bank's asset purchase program has not led to a statistically significant movement in the exchange rate.
- Die Zeit recently reported that Greece has not fulfilled requirements to qualify for a new loan from the IMF.
Headlines provided by Briefing.com