Pound Plunges After UK Retail Sales Crash Most Since 2011

The post-Brexit euphoria appears to have abruptly vanished in December as UK core retail sales plunged 2.0% month-over-month, the biggest drop since May 2011. Ironically, this crack in the 'Brexit Boom' occurred an hour before U.K. Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond told a Davos gathering on Friday that an inflation pickup will put a damper on consumers this year. Cable tumbled on the print (not helped by London home pre-sales plunging).

Trump Speech Preview: "Three Big Ideas"

1) "The speech is an attempt to address the deep structural problems facing American society", 2) The speech is "not ideological": "It's a rejection of ideological thinking., 3) The speech will convey "that a nation and its people and its affairs are like a family and you need to take care of them."

Four Dead, More Than 20 Injured After Driver Ploughs Into Melbourne Pedestrians

In what may be the latest ISIS-inspired instance of vehicular terrorism, a man deliberately slammed into pedestrians near a shopping mall in Melbourne, Australia, killing four and injuring more than 20. While the police have said the incident was not terrorism-related, according to some eyewitness reports the driver was yelling "Allah Akbar" as he was driving.

Frontrunning: January 20

  • How Trump Aims to Broadly Reshape Policy (WSJ)
  • Trump Calls for Unity at Opening Concert as Inaugural Festivities Begin (NYT)
  • Trump Takes the Reins of a Deeply Divided Nation (BBG)
  • Washington braces for anti-Trump protests, New Yorkers march (Reuters)
  • After the Parties, a Protest for the Ages (WSJ)

Full Calendar Of Today's Washington Events

With markets focused on today's events in Washington, culminating with Trump's inaugural speech, here’s a look at the key scheduled events for Friday, Jan. 20.

S&P Futures, Dollar Rise As World Awaits Trump Inauguration Speech

"All eyes will be on the content and style of Trump's inauguration speech," Morgan Stanley's Hans Redeker wrote in a note.  "The more 'Presidential' this speech comes across, the better the outcome for markets." And as BonY added, "If Trump ramps up the rhetoric the market will be concerned about building long dollar positions."