Forex news for Asia-Pacific trading on August 16, 2021:
- China July industrial production +6.4% y/y vs +7.8% expected
- Japan Q2 prelim GDP +0.3% q/q vs +0.2% expected
- China July house prices +4.6% y/y vs +4.7% prior
- PBOC injects 600B yuan via one year MLF
- New Zealand July business PMI 56.8 vs 54.7 prior
- Australian state Victoria's premier extends Melbourne lockdown for two more weeks
- Fed's Kashkari wants to see "a few more" solid employment reports before tapering
- UK August Rightmove house prices -0.3% m/m vs +0.7% prior
- Gold down $2 to $1771
- US 10-year yields down 4.9 bps to 1.248%
- Nikkei futures down 2.1%
- WTI crude oil down 75-cents to $67.70
- Yen leads, AUD lags
There was some unease right from the open on delta concerns as cases continue to rise, including in Japan where the hit 20,000 for the first time. The first casualty was oil, which sunk 70 cents shortly after the open and has stayed there.
Japanese GDP offered a counterpoint as it beat expectations on strong domestic demand led by consumers that are proving nearly everywhere that they can cope with covid. That report didn't leads to any movement in FX though.
Instead it was disappointing Chinese industrial output and retail sales that added to the displeasure in markets, sinking AUD/USD by 30 pips and putting some pressure on the other commodity currencies.
The yen is also attracting a steady bid to start the week as the Nikkei slumps.