Monday, November 30, 2009

Quick Overview

  • The Chicago Purchasing Managers' index rose from 54.2 to 56.1 in November

  • Canada’s GDP rose 0.1% in Q3, but fell 3.2% YoY

  • Japan’s industrial production rose 0.5% in October.

  • EU consumer prices rose 0.6% MoM

  • The USDA said:
  • 79% of the corn crop was harvested. 21% or 2.7 bln bu of corn remain in the field; including 28% of IL, 22% of MN & NE, 60% of ND, 42% of SD, 33% of WI.
  • 96% of the soybean crop was harvested. 133 million bushels of soybeans remain in the field.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Bundesbank fears relapse as German banks face €90bn fresh losses
The venerable bank said in its Stability Report that the world had narrowly averted a "virtually uncontrollable" collapse in the late summer of 2008. While the credit system has partly stabilised, the underlying problems "are still far from being overcome" and money markets are not yet functioning properly.

Quick Overview

  • The central bank of the United Arab Emirates says it is setting up a facility to provide banks with extra liquidity. The Central bank is expected to announce it will guarantee Dubai World debt before stock markets open on Monday.

  • The rush by retail investors into gold has forced the US government to suspend sales of the world’s most popular bullion coin, the American Eagle, after running out of inventories for the second time since August of 08.

  • Bloomberg reported that Europe holds $87 billion of debt from the United Arab Emirates and roughly $50 billion of that is held by British banks. The Royal Bank of Scotland is said to have the biggest exposure to Dubai World, with $2.3 billion of its debt.

  • Freight traffic on U.S. railroads reached its highest level so far this year

  • Japan's unemployment rate improved from 5.3% to 5.1% in October

  • Vietnam devalued its currency by 5.4 % and lifted interest rates by 1% to try and choke off inflation.

  • According to the China gold association, Chinas gold demand may be more than 450 metric tons this year, up from 395.6 tons in 2008, and output may climb to 310 tons, compared with 282 tons a year earlier.

  • Iran’s government said it would build 10 new uranium enrichment sites and look into enriching uranium at higher grade inside the country.

  • The US military could have captured or killed Osama bin Laden in 2001 if it had launched a concerted attack on his hideout in Afghanistan, according to a report from the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Updates resume Nov. 29

Quick Overview

  • U.S. GDP rose 0.7% in Q3, YoY GDP fell 2.5%.

  • The Standard and Poor Case-Shiller index of home prices rose 0.3% in September.

  • U.S. consumer confidence rose from 48.7 to 49.5

  • Industrial new orders in the EU rose 1.7% MoM, but fell 16.4% YoY

  • The International Sugar Organization is predicting world sugar production will exceed consumption by 0.75 million tons in 2010-2011. The 2009-2010 production deficit is forecast at 7.2 million tons.


Monday, November 23, 2009

Quick Overview

  • Spurred by a tax credits that lured first-time buyers, U.S. existing home sales rose 10.1% in October, and 23.5% YoY

  • The National Association for Business Economists said that they expect U.S. GDP to be up 2.9% in 2010, up from their previous forecast of 2.6%.

  • Canada’s retail sales rose 1.0% MoM

  • There seems to have been a shift in attitude , from fearing a large South American soybean crop to needing one.

  • Coca-Cola, the world's largest soft-drink maker, is planning to more than double its number of bottling plants in China within a decade, the Financial Times said.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Quick Overview

  • China's sugar imports in October rose sharply to 56,882metric tons, the General Administration of Customs said Monday. Last October, the country imported 13,911 tons of sugar. In the January-October period, sugar imports rose 42% to 1.01 million tons,Customs said.

  • China's cotton imports in October rose 23% YoY to 118,580 metric tons, the General Administration of Customs said Monday. In the January-October period, cotton imports fell 36% to 1,196,644 tons.

  • Manila Philippines: the usual (annual) rice shortfall is around 1.5 million tons, added to that is the typhoon damage of 850,000 tons, which means our rice imports (next year) will reach around 2.35 million tons," said NFA spokesperson Rex Estoperez

  • The USDA said there were 11.134 million head of cattle on feed on November 1st, up 1.5% YoY. Placements in October rose 1%., marketing’s fell 3%.

  • The USDA said there were 37.0 million pounds of frozen bellies in storage on October 31st, up 71% YoY. Frozen pork supplies totaled 520 million pounds, down 1% YoY.

  • (FT)Microsoft has had discussions with News Corp over a plan that would involve the media company’s being paid to “de-index” its news websites from Google, setting the scene for a search engine battle that could offer a ray of light to the newspaper industry

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Quick Overview

  • Growth and recovery are expected in 2010 in most world regions, but the upturn will be modest, the OECD says.

  • U.S. jobless claims were unchanged last week at 505,000.

  • U.S. delinquency rate on mortgage loans rose from 9.24% to a record high 9.64% Q3. The foreclosure rate rose from 4.30% to 4.47% in Q3. That makes one in seven homeowners either late on their payments or already in foreclosure.

  • The Conference Board's index of leading indicators rose 0.3% in October.

  • The Philadelphia Federal Reserve's regional index of manufacturing rose from 11.5 to 16.7 in November,

  • Canada’s wholesale sales rose 0.2% MoM, but fell10.4% YoY

  • Canada’s leading indicators rose 0.7% in October

  • U.K. retail sales rose 3.0% YoY.

  • The World Gold Council said gold demand totaled 800.3 tons in Q3, up 15% QoQ , but fell 34% YoY. YoY Mine production rose 6%.

  • The U.S. dollar will remain the world's primary reserve currency for many years or decades, an International Monetary Fund official said on Thursday.

  • The early start to the rainy season this year in Brazil has heightened concerns that Asian soybean rust could vex farmers more than usual. The first incident of the disease for the 2009-10 crop year was discovered Wednesday in Mato Grosso, Brazil's No. 1 soybean producing state.

  • Dylan Grice at Societe General says the price at which the dollar would be fully backed by gold (as it was at the peak in the 1970s) is $6300

  • The return of the resources boom was again confirmed by the news yesterday that the value of mining and energy projects under development in Australia had jumped 40% from April to October this year.

  • (Spiegel)Global warming appears to have stalled. Climatologists are puzzled as to why average global temperatures have stopped rising over the last 10 years. Some attribute the trend to a lack of sunspots, while others explain it through ocean currents.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Quick Overview

  • U.S. housing starts fell 10.6% MoM.

  • YoY Canada’s consumer prices rose 0.1% in October

  • EU construction output fell 1.1%

  • Australia’s leading indicators rose 0.9% in September

  • The U.S. Department of Energy said:
    Supplies of crude oil fell 900,000 barrels to 336.8 million barrels.
    Supplies of gasoline fell 1.7 million barrels
    Supplies of heating oil rose 300,000 barrels.
    Refinery use fell from 79.9% to 79.4% of capacity
    Gasoline demand fell 0.4% YoY
    Distillate demand fell 11.4% YoY


Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Quick Overview

  • U.S. producer price index rose 0.3% MoM, but fell 1.9% YoY

  • U.S. Industrial production rose 0.1% in October.

  • YoY U.K. consumer prices rose 1.5%

  • EU exports rose 17% MoM, but fell 19% YoY

  • Rumours of findings of significant fungal contamination in the US corn crop lifts the price of other livestock feeds, including soymeal and rapeseed.

  • Argentina’s persistent drought has caused Oil World to lower their Soy production estimate by 2 MMT, now pegging 2009/10 output at 48 MMT, 5 MMT below the USDA's estimate.

If Nothing Else, Save Farming
According to farm scientists at Cornell University, cultivating one hectare of maize in the United States requires 40 litres of petrol and 75 litres of diesel(3). The amazing productivity of modern farm labour has been purchased at the cost of a dependency on oil. Unless farmers can change the way it’s grown, a permanent oil shock would price food out of the mouths of many of the world’s people. Any responsible government would be asking urgent questions about how long we have got.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Quick Overview

  • The Fed is monitoring currency markets “closely” and will conduct policy in a way that will “help ensure that the dollar is strong”, Ben Bernanke said in rare comments on the US currency.

  • U.S. retail sales rose 1.4% in October. Excluding autos sales rose 0.2%.

  • The New York Federal Reserve's regional index of manufacturing fell from 34.57 to 23.51 in November.

  • Canada's existing home sales rose 41% in October

  • Canada’s manufacturing sales rose 1.4% in September

  • Japan's GDP rose 1.2% in Q3, but fell 4.5% YoY

  • YoY EU consumer prices rose 0.5% in October

  • (Bloomberg)The Philippines, the world’s biggest rice buyer, issued its third tender for 2010 supplies after storms damaged crops and the country accelerates imports to secure shipments amid surging prices.. “We have to secure our supplies ahead of everybody else,” Romeo Jimenez, director of the authority, said in a phone interview from Manila today. “India will also be importing rice. Prices will rise.”

  • White sugar tenders for the expired December futures contract were 5,520 lots, with Louis Dreyfus taking delivery of all the contracts.
Mayfly May Thwart $3 Billion in Coal Mined in U.S. Mountaintops
Mountaintop mining in West Virginia, Kentucky, Virginia, Tennessee and parts of Pennsylvania and Ohio accounts for 6 percent of U.S. coal production. Half of U.S. electricity comes from burning coal.

China has now become the biggest risk to the world economy
It is fashionable to talk of America as the supplicant. That misreads the strategic balance. Washington can bring China to its knees at any time by shutting markets. There is no symmetry here. Any move by Beijing to liquidate its holdings of US Treasuries could be neutralized – in extremis – by capital controls. Well-armed sovereign states can do whatever they want.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Quick Overview

  • The US trade deficit widened by $36.5bn -- to the largest amount in 10 years. The U.S. Census Bureau said that exports rose 2.9% in September to $132.0, billion while imports rose 5.8% to $168.4 billion.

  • Plans to strip the Fed of its bank supervision powers were rebuffed by senior Obama administration officials.

  • The University of Michigan's consumer sentiment index fell from 70.6 to 66.0 in November,

  • EU GDP rose 0.2% in Q3 and fell 4.3% YoY

  • (FT) Two computer programmers from Bernard Madoff’s fraudulent investment operation were arrested on charges of falsifying Mr Madoff’s trading records to make them appear regular and above board

  • Scientists who crashed two spacecraft into a crater on the moon said on Friday they found water in the dust they kicked up, just as they had hoped.

  • News that funds manager Blackrock expects central banks to be net gold buyers in 2009 is contributing to gold's rise.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Quick Overview

  • U.S. jobless claims fell 12,000 last week to 502,000, less than expected.

  • The U.S. Treasury sold $16 billion of 30-year T-bonds at a median yield of 4.39%. The bid to cover ratio was 2.26, the lowest since May.

  • The U.S. ran a record federal budget deficit of $176.4 billion in October up from $155.5 billion deficit a year ago.

  • EU industrial production rose 0.2% MoM but fell 12.1% YoY.

  • Canada’s new home prices rose 0.5% MoM, but fell 2.7% YoY.

  • YoY factory output in India rose 9.1% in September

  • The U.S. Department of Energy said:
    Supplies of crude oil rose 1.8 million barrels to 337.7 million barrels.
    Supplies of gasoline rose 2.5 million barrels
    Supplies of heating oil rose 800,000 barrels.
    Refinery use fell from 80.6% to 79.9%
    Gasoline demand fell 1.0% YoY
    Distillate demand fell 13.8% YoY

  • Russian president calls on country to refocus its economy away from energy and heavy industry towards information technology, telecommunications and space

  • The Treasury secretary, in Singapore at the APEC meeting, offered fresh reassurances that the administration was committed to bolster the dollar.

  • China's raw coal output hit 270 million tons in October, climbing to the year's second highest peak

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Quick Overview

  • US Treasury secretary Geithner tells reporters in Japan he believes in the need to maintain a strong dollar and that the US is determined to get its budget deficit down

  • Japan's machinery orders rose 10.5% in September, better than expected.

  • The UK jobless total rose to 2.46 million in the three months to September, but the increase was the smallest since May 2008.

  • Australian Employers unexpectedly added 24,500 jobs

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Quick Overview

  • The Association of Realtors said existing home sales rose 11.4% in Q3 and up 5.9% YoY.

  • China's Industrial Production rose 16.1% YoY

  • USDA's 2009-2010 U.S. ending stocks estimate of:
    Corn was lowered from 1.672 to 1.625 billion bushels. (46 day supply)
    Soybeans were raised from 230 to 270 million bushels.
    Wheat was raised from 864 to 885 million bushels. (145 day supply)
    Sugar was raised from 836,000 to 1,016,000 tons.
    Cotton was lowered from 5.40 to 4.90 million bales.

  • The USDA's 2009-2010 world ending stocks estimate of:
    Corn was lowered from 136 to 132 million tons. (60 day supply)
    Soybeans were raised from 55 to 57 million tons.
    Wheat was raised from 187 to 188 million tons.
    Cotton was reduced from 56 to 54 million bales.

  • The USDA expects beef production to be down 3% in 2009 and down 1% in 2010.

  • The USDA expects pork production to be down 1% in 2009 and down 3% in 2010..

  • China's refined sugar production in October fell 17%. For the January-October period refined sugar output fell 13% YoY.

Monday, November 09, 2009

Quick Overview

  • The IMF said the US dollar is "on the strong side".

  • Policy makers from this weekend's G-20 meeting in Scotland assure investors that central banks are not yet ready to withdraw stimulus from the world's economy.

  • Bloomberg said China's corn crop will be down 13% YoY

  • Tropical Storm Ida is bringing more rain to the already-wet southeastern U.S.

  • The Indian government intends to release 3 MMT of wheat to the domestic market. Is that the same 3 MMT that they were going to release two months ago?

  • The Baltic Dry Index posted a sixth weekly advance as rates for smaller iron-ore transporters rose to the highest in more than a year.

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Unnatural disaster
..the balance works out at 96 per cent navigation, 3 per cent flood protection and 1 per cent environmental restoration.

Friday, November 06, 2009

Quick Overview

  • US jobs data out worse than expected, with nonfarm payrolls up by 190,000 against expectations of 175,000 and unemployment rising from 9.8% last month to 10.2% now

  • U.S. wholesale sales rose 0.7% MoM while inventories fell 0.9%.

  • Canada’s unemployment rate rose from 8.4% to 8.6% in October

  • The Reserve Bank of Australia estimates GDP will be up 1.75% in 2009 and up 3.25% in 2010.

  • The US ag attachee cut to 13.2m tonnes the forecast for Chinas sugar output, representing a 9% cut on their initial estimate, and a 1.2% fall YoY.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Quick Overview

  • U.S. jobless claims fell 20,000 to 512,000, less than expected.

  • YoY U.S. non-farm productivity rose 9.5% in Q3

  • YoY U.S labor costs fell 3.6% in Q3

  • The EU kept its interest rate unchanged at 1.0%

  • EU retail sales fell 0.4% MoM and 2.5% YoY.

  • Brazil's expects soybean production of 63 million tons in 2009-2010

  • England kept its interest rate unchanged at 0.50%.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

It is Japan we should be worrying about, not America
Simon Johnson, former chief economist of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), told the US Congress last week that the debt path was out of control and raised "a real risk that Japan could end up in a major default".

Quick Overview

  • The Federal Reserve took small steps in the direction of a more hawkish stance on rates, tweaking its guidance on future policy for the first time since March.

  • The ADP employment report showed that 203,000 private sector jobs were lost in October. Although this was more than the 190,000 forecast, investors welcomed the fact it represented the smallest number since July 2008.

  • The Institute of Supply Management's index of services fell from 50.9 to 50.6 in October

  • The Mortgage Bankers Association said its index of mortgage applications rose 8%

  • The World Bank expects GDP in China to be up 8.4% in 2009 and up 8.7% in 2010

  • Services in the U.K. rose from 55.3 to 56.9 in October

  • Services in the Euro zone rose from 52.3 to 52.6 in October

  • Australia's retail sales fell 0.2% in September.

  • The U.S. Department of Energy said:
    Supplies of crude oil fell 4.0 million barrels.
    Supplies of gasoline fell 300,000 barrels
    Supplies of heating oil supplies fell 1.1 million barrels.
    Refinery use fell from 81.8% to 80.6%
    Gasoline demand was unchanged YoY
    Distillate demand fell 14.8% YoY.

  • Gold prices extended their record breaking run, pushing towards $1,100

  • Informa estimates the US corn crop at 13.064 billion bushels with a yield of 164.8 bushels per acre
    Informa estimates the US bean crop at 3.333 billion bushels with a bpa of 42.4.
    The last USDA estimate, in Oct, was 13.018 billion corn with a 164.2 bpa and 3.250 billion beans with a 42.4 bpa.
    Last month, Informa estimated the corn crop at 13.127 with a 164.7 bpa and the bean crop at 3.250 billion with a 44 bpa.

  • (Bloomberg) -- Rice futures in Chicago rose to the highest price in almost 10 months on mounting concern that Indian inventories will trail demand, forcing the world’s second-largest producer to import grain.
    Output in India has declined because of adverse weather, and the government plans to buy 26 million metric tons of the grain from farmers this year to bolster domestic stockpiles and avoid food shortages, said Dennis DeLaughter, a rice farmer and the owner of Progressive Farm Marketing in Edna, Texas.
    “The government is trying to make sure they don’t have a panic on their hands, so they’re moving rice into the market early to avoid having a run on supplies,” DeLaughter said.

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Quick Overview

  • The Federal Reserve begins its two-day meeting today and is expected to keep the federal funds rate unchanged.

  • U.S. Factory orders rose 0.9% in September, better than expected.

  • Australia increased its interest rate from 3.25% to 3.50%, as expected.

  • Gold has hit an all-time high of USD 1,085 after it was announced that India's central bank had bought 200 MT of the stuff from the IMF in deal worth USD6.7 billion. This appears to confirm that central banks are comfortable entering the market to hold gold at over USD 1,000/oz.

Monday, November 02, 2009

Quick Overview

  • The ISM index of manufacturing rose from 52.6 to 55.7 in October.

  • U.S. employment index rose from 46.2 to 53.1

  • U.S. construction spending rose 0.8% MoM.

  • Chinas manufacturing index rose from 55.0 to 55.4 in October -- the highest reading in 18 months.

  • U.K.’s manufacturing index rose from 49.9 to 53.7 in October

  • EU manufacturing rose from 49.3 to 50.7 in October

  • Pending U.S. home sales, representing contracts signed for home purchases, rose 6.4 % MoM. YoY the pending sales index rose 12.4%

  • Ford Motor Co. said Monday it earned a profit of $997 million in Q3, a $1.2 billion rebound from the Q3 a year ago.