- Obama and Boehner met for a ‘frank‘ one-hour Cliff discussion – nothing substantive (more cuts, more revenue) was reported – communication lines remain open
- Polls showed LDP + New Komeito to win a majority in the Japanese election this weekend, with perhaps 300+ seats between them (more polls)
- Japan Data: Q4 Tankan Survey – Diffusion Index fell to -12 (expected -10); Capex rose +6.8% (expected 5.4%) – articles from Bloomberg
- OECD report on Australia released – generally positive – correct mix of fiscal and monetary policies etc. But could do better on consimption tax vs. corporate tax
- The first day of EU leaders summit concluded – full text of conclusions here (PDF) (to be included in final text after day 2, tomorrow). This was accompanied by many upbeat comments from the attendees as they emerged. The FT was more sanguine … (paywall – headline is: EU summit delays crucial eurozone moves)
- China Data: December HSBC China Flash Manufacturing PMI at 50.9 (vs. prior 50.5 & 50.8 expected)
- Japan Data: Final Oct. Industrial Production +1.6% MoM (prelim. was +1.8%) [YoY was -4.5% vs, -4.3% prelim.]
- Japan Data: Oct. Capacity Utilization +1.6% (vs. -5.5% in Sept.)
The Yen weakened again today after a poor Tankan Survey and ahead of the weekend’s election. Polls continue to show an LDP victory. USD/JPY topped out at 83.93, not taking on the barrier option-related selling in place just ahead of 84.00. EUR/JPY topped at 109.83.
EUR/USD showed some strength too, rising on news from the Obama/Boehner meeting (or, rather, no news from the meeting, neither saying anything nasty) and again at the conclusion of day 1 of the latest EU summit as positive noises were made by attendees. 1.3100 proved a bogey again, EUR/USD trickling lower from 1.3095 in early Tokyo lunch as the USD/JPY spiked above 83.90,
AUD had a little action today, trading down toward overnight lows and finding bids there yet again, before being chased a little higher on the back of a better Chinese Flash Manuf. PMI result.