- China’s foreign currency holdings fell for a sixth month in December, bringing last year’s drop to $320 billion as the yuan posted its steepest annual slide in more than two decades. Reserves decreased $41.1 billion to a fresh five-year low of $3.01 trillion, the People’s Bank of China said Saturday. That was in line with estimates in Bloomberg’s survey of economists. The central bank’s effort to stabilize the yuan was the main reason for the drop last year, the State Administration of Foreign Exchange said in a statement. The world’s largest stockpile has fallen for 10 straight quarters from a record $4 trillion in June 2014, while eroding confidence in the yuan has pushed the currency to the lowest levels in eight years.
- Futures showed most Asian equity markets strengthening after U.S. stocks rose to a record high at the end of last week, while Britain’s pound fell following comments by Prime Minister Theresa May on the U.K.’s European Union negotiations. The greenback held firm against most major peers in Asian trading Monday after signs of strength in the monthly U.S. labor market report helped drive up the Bloomberg Dollar Index on Friday for the first time in three days. Australian and New Zealand bond rates climbed following an increase in U.S. yields at the end of last week. West Texas Intermediate crude oil slid for the first time in four sessions. Markets in Japan are closed for a holiday. Nikkei 225 Index futures added 1 percent in Osaka, while Kospi index contracts rose 0.2 percent in latest trading. FTSE China A50 futures held steady and Hang Seng futures were off 0.2 percent.
- Potential candidates to head the Federal Reserve in 2018 suggested that monetary policy would be tighter if they were in charge. Speaking at the annual American Economic Association meeting that ended Sunday, Glenn Hubbard of Columbia University, along with Stanford University’s John Taylor and Kevin Warsh, criticized the central bank for trying to do too much to help an economy struggling with problems that monetary policy can’t solve.
Wall Street Journal:
- Two Senate Republicans to Seek Added Sanctions on Russia Over Hacking. The move by Lindsey Graham and John McCain threatens to deepen the divide between Capitol Hill and Donald Trump over relations with the Kremlin.
- Senate Looks to Move Fast on Trump Administration Hearings, Health Law. Republican-controlled chamber has at least nine confirmation hearings this week.
- Surveillance Footage Shows Moment Of Deadly Jerusalem Truck Attack.
- Santelli 'Meets The Press': "You Picked Sides... On Election Night, I've Never Seen You So Unhappy".
- The Problem With Forecasts.
- The Surveillance State Did Not Disappear With The Trump Victory: "It Is Still Lurking And Completely Intact".
- TrimTabs Says "Insatiable" ETF Buying Is Unlike It Has Anything Ever Seen, Issues A Warning.
- It's The Debt, Stupid - Massive Borrowing Binge Producing Fake Recovery. (graph)
- 5,000 National Guard Deployed At Inauguration As Michael Moore Calls For "100 Days Of Resistance" Against Trump. (video)
- Union Servitude Ends In Kentucky: State Kills Prevailing Wages, Passes Right-To-Work.
- North Korea Warns Of ICBM Launch "At Any Time, Anywhere".
- Traders May "Sell The Inauguration" But BofA Is Not Calling For "A BIg Short" Yet.
- Trump To Meet With UK Prime Minister, As May Denies Her Brexit Plans Are "Muddled".
- Priebus: Trump "Accepts" That Russia Played A Role In Election Hacking.
- Steven Mnuchin Donated To One Democrat In 2016 – The Woman Who Declined To Prosecute His Bank. While $2,000 is a small amount of money, the entire thing stinks. Kamala Harris should resign from her Senate seat immediately unless she can provide a reasonable explanation of why she let OneWest off the hook. Likewise, Steven Mnuchin should be replaced by Trump as Treasury Secretary nominee. Both are swamp creatures, and we should demand better than these two.
- Florida Shooter Charged, Could Face Death Penalty; Had Gun Returned After Found Mentally Stable.
- Australia forecasts dramatic drop in iron ore prices through 2018. The Department of Industry, Innovation and Science forecasts iron ore to average $51.60 a ton this year and $46.70 in 2018, compared with current spot prices of around $80, double the price a year ago. The department predicted a price of $44.10 in 2016. The country's chief forecaster said the price rise is being caused by a temporary lift in Chinese steel production and run ups caused by speculative commodities trading in China that will not last.
- Asian indices are -.25% to +.5% on average.
- Asia Ex-Japan Investment Grade CDS Index 114.25 +.25 basis point.
- Asia Pacific Sovereign CDS Index 33.75 +.5 basis point.
- Bloomberg Emerging Markets Currency Index 69.95 -.04%.
- S&P 500 futures +.09%.
- NASDAQ 100 futures +.13%.
Earnings of Note
3:00 pm EST
3:00 pm EST
- Consumer Credit for November is estimated to rise to $18.225B versus $16.018B in October.
- None of note
- The Fed's Rosengren speaking, Fed's Lockhart speaking, China CPI report, Eurozone Industrial Production report, Eurozone Unemployment report and the JPMorgan Healthcare Conference could also impact trading today.