Markit

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US Services Data Rebounds But Jobs, Backlogs "Highlight Fragility" Of US Economy





Despite a modest rise in April's headline Services PMI print to 52.8 (from 52.1) the details under the surface paint a different picture (remaining weaker than its post-crisis average of 55.6). The rate of employment growth was the weakest seen since December 2015 as backlogs of work declined for the ninth consecutive month, which is the longest continuous period of depletion since the survey began in late-2009.   ISM Services data also beat expectations, rising to 55.7 despite a drop in business activity and backlogs. As Markit warns, "the fragility of growth is highlighted by inflows of new business rising at a rate only marginally above the post-recession low."

 
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Frontrunning: May 4





  • Donald Trump’s Win Just Latest Tremor Shaking GOP (WSJ)
  • Trump Becomes Presumptive Republican Nominee as Cruz Exits Race (BBG)
  • How 'Stop Trump' failed to halt the Republican front-runner (Reuters)
  • Islamic State seeks news blackout in Mosul as Iraqi army nears (Reuters)
  • U.S. gathers allies on next steps in Islamic State fight (Reuters)
 
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Global Stocks Slide As Dollar Continues Rising: Has The "Pricing In" Of Trump Begun





While there was no unexpected overnight central bank announcement unlike yesterday's surprise by the RBA which unleashed volatility havoc in the FX market, which promptly spilled over into all asset classes, overnight stocks around the world saw another leg lower without a tangible catalyst, while EM currencies fell to a one-month low after two Fed presidents raised concern investors had become too complacent in their belief that U.S. interest rate raises will stay on hold. Or perhaps all that is happening is that after ignoring Trump, the market is starting to finally price in the possible reality of the Donald in the White House (although as Jeff Gundlach pointed out, Trump would be a far better president for the economy and the market than Hillary or Bernie).

 
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"Unexpected" Australian Rate Cut To Record Low Unleashes FX Havoc, Global "Risk Off"





Overnight Australia finally admitted it has succumbed to the global economic weakness plaguing the rest of the world when in a "surprise" move, Australia’s central bank cut its benchmark interest rate for the first time in a year to a record low and left the door open for further easing to counter a wave of disinflation that’s swept over the developed world. The move sent the local currency tumbling and local stocks climbing. Reserve Bank of Australia Governor Glenn Stevens and his board lowered the cash rate by 25 basis points to 1.75 percent Tuesday, a move predicted by just 12 of 27 economists surveyed by Bloomberg. The announcement has, not surprisingly unleashed havoc across FX markets and broadly pushed global mood into its latest "risk off" phase.

 
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"No End In Sight To Current Downturn" - US Manufacturing Plunges To Sept 2009 Lows





Following April's flash PMI print plunge to cycle lows - blamed on the presidential election uncertainty - Markit's Final Manufacturing PMI printed 50.8 (as expected) its lowest since September 2009. New orders weakened further as the rate of job creation tumbles to thre-year lows. ISM Manufacturing fell back from its oddly decoupled bounce to July 2015 highs to a coincidental 50.8 (missing expectations of 51.4). As Markit concludes, apparently peddling fiction, "the April PMI data suggest there’s no end in sight to the current downturn in manufacturing activity...raising question marks over whether GDP growth will improve on the near-stalling seen in the first three months of the year."

 
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Services PMI Suggests "0.8% GDP At Start Of Q2" As "Job Creation Slows"





With Manufacturing PMI at multi-year lows and trending lower, why would anyone be surprised that, amid plunging profits in retailers and weakness in restaurant performance indices, Markit's preliminary Services PMI for April would bounce for the 2nd month in a row to  52.1. However, as Markit notes, despite th emodest pickup, "growth is clearly far more fragile than this time last year."

 
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As Fed Meeting Begins Futures Are Flat In Sleepy Session; Apple Earnings On Deck





With the Fed decision just one day away, followed the very next day by the increasingly more irrational BOJ, stocks had no desire to make significant moves and overnight's boring session was the result, as European stocks and U.S. index futures rose modestly but mostly hugged the flatline while Asian declined 0.2% for a third day as raw-material shares declined and Tokyo equities slumped before central bank meetings in the U.S. and Japan this week. China’s stocks rose the most in almost two weeks, up 0.6% but failed to rise above 3000 on the Shanghai Composite, in thin trading.

 
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The Economy As It Is, Or The Economy As It "Should Be"





The mainstream view of the unemployment statistics suggest that any weakness in the US economy, manufacturing or beyond, will be temporary and shallow because employment growth remains robust. In fact, the payroll reports are irrelevant. Actual economic analysis and fruitful interpretation lies only in ignoring them. Viewing the economy only through the lens of the BLS figures leads to a world that just doesn’t exist; it’s why policymakers, economists, and the media can’t seem to gather that the recovery ended years ago.

 
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US Manufacturing Plunges To 7 Year Lows As PMI "Dashes Hope That Q1 Weakness Was Temporary"





Following Japan's record low PMI, Europe's modest pick-up, and China's bounce, this week's Philly Fed crash was more indicative as US Manufacturing (flash) PMI printed 50.8 (from 51.5 in March and notably missing 52.0 expectations). This is the lowest print since September 2009 with New Orders sliding (weakest since Dec 2015), and Employment at its weakest since June 2013. As Markit notes, "US factories reported their worst month for just over six-and-a-half years in April, dashing hopes that first quarter weakness will prove temporary."

 
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Stocks Rebound In Calm Trading On Back Of Stronger Crude, Dollar





Unlike yesterday's overnight session, which saw some subtantial carry FX volatility and tumbling European yields in the aftermath of the TSY's anti-inversion decree, leading to a return of fears that the next leg down in markets is upon us, the overnight session has been far calmer, assisted in no small part by the latest China Caixin Services PMI, which rose from 51.2 to 52.2. Adding to the overnight rebound was crude, which saw a big bounce following yesterday's API inventory data, according to which crude had its biggest inventory draw in 2016, resulting in WTI rising as high as $37.15 overnight

 
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As Pfizer-Allergan Sinks, These "Inversion" Deals Could Be Next





While the Pfizer-Allergan $160 billion merger may be the most notable casualty of the Treasury's decree, there are various other deals working on corporate inversion deals or who have carried out inversions in the past. They are shown in the list below,

 
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Markit, ISM Paint Conflicting Pictures Of US Service Economy; Market Focuses On The More Bullish One





One again it was a "good cop, bad cop" combination of the Markit and ISM service surveys.

 
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"Risk Off" - Global Stocks Slide As Yen Surges To 17 Month High; Bund Yields Plunge





The market's slumberous levitation of the past month, in which yesterday's -0.3% drop was the second largest in 4 weeks and in which the market had gone for 15 consecutive days without a 1% S&P 500 move (in March 2015 the sasme streak ended at day 16) may be about to end, after an overnight session, the polar opposite of yesterday's smooth sailing, which has seen a sudden return of global risk off mood.

 
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