WHAT HAPPENED OVERNIGHT IN THE US:
· S&P -0.1%, stumbled late as Trump headed towards healthcare bill impasse.
· Early trade subdued as Republicans pushed behind closed doors for deal, but early optimism from Whitehouse replaced later by vote delay announcement.
· Yield curve remained where it had been all week - 2’s & 10 at 115bps (well off post-election high 135bps) - with broad Trump agenda at risk of logjam.
· Healthcare -0.4%, dropped from mid-session high (+0.8%). Most of the rest unexciting; resources soft again, and little in it for S&P breadth (249-250).
· After-hrs, glimmer of hope lifted S&P futures +0.3% as House Republican leaders announced Friday vote for health bill. But hardline conservative ‘Freedom Caucus’ remained non-committal – and Paul Ryan ultimative; “The president is done negotiating…and is moving forward”.
WHAT’S UP THIS MORNING IN THE EAST:
· Asia quiet. Japan recovering some of week’s losses; China & Hong Kong either side of flat; Tencent +0.1%.
· Australia +0.8%, mostly banks. BHP +0.3% & Rio +0.2%, indicate London to recover small post-SA sell-off, but nothing more. BHP volume 40% below avg; Rio -30%. Dalian iron futures -1.3%, heading for 4th straight loss (expect spot <$86). Coking coal & steel also both lower.
SOUTH AFRICAN NEWS:
· Expect AllShare -0.25%. From SA close yday, gold -$5 ($1243), plat -$8 ($958), copper -0.2% ($2.63/lb), oil +0.4% ($50.73), USDZAR -0.1% (12.49), S&P -0.4%.
· SOL: analyst & investor meeting at 5pm.
TODAYS KEY DATA POINTS:
· 11.30am: UK Feb Retail Sales
· 2.30pm: US initial jobless
· 2.45pm: Yellen speaks at community development forum (not expected to make keynote comments)
· 4pm: US Home Sales.