Markets assumed a clear risk-off posture following last night’s US missile strike in the Middle East, with safe haven assets in particular demand.The minutes from the December Federal Reserve meeting were mostly uninspiring, with officials suggesting that rates were likely to remain steady unless there was a material change in the underlying economic situation. US data: ISM Manufacturing PMI (Dec) printed at 47.2 vs. 49.0 eyed, the lowest reading since 2009. The Employment subcomponent fell to just 45.1, signaling a relatively sharp contraction in hiring in the sector. Separately, Construction Spending (Nov) rose 0.6% m/m, more than the 0.4% reading eyed. FX: The Japanese yen was the strongest major currency today, followed by the US dollar. The British pound was by far the weakest, falling by more than 1% against the day’s leading currencies. Commodities: Oil rallied more than 3% on the day, boosted by the turmoil in the Middle East and a surprise drawdown in inventories. Gold tacked on about 1.5% in a safe haven bid.
View our guide on how to interpret the FX Dashboard.
US indices closed lower on the day, spooked by tensions in the Middle East.REITs (XLRE) were the strongest sector on the day, gaining more than 0.5%. Materials (XLB) was the weakest, falling by more than -1%. Stocks on the move:
- Aerospace and Defense names were the big movers, led by Northrop Grumman (NOC, +5%) and Lockheed Martin (LMT, +4%)
Original from: www.forex.com