Hello, world!

Global oil prices rose on Friday after OPEC oil ministers and Russia agreed to cut output by 1.2 million barrels per day (bpd). OPEC will curb output by 800,000 bpd from January while non-OPEC allies contribute an additional 400,000 bpd of cuts. The number of oil rigs in operation in the US fell by 10 in the latest week, the most in two years. Brent crude rose by US$1.61 or 2.7% to US$61.67 a barrel and the US Nymex price rose by US$1.12 or 2.2% to US$52.61 a barrel. Over the week Brent rose by US$2.96 or 5% with Nymex up US$1.68 or 3.3%.

Major currencies were mixed against the US dollar in US and European trade compared with the Asia close. The Euro rose from US$1.1360 to US$1.1420 and was near US$1.1375 in late US trade. The Aussie dollar eased from near US72.40 cents to around US71.95 cents and was near US72.00 cents in late US trade (currently US71.8c). And the Japanese yen lifted from 112.93 yen per US dollar to JPY112.54 and was near JPY112.70 in late US trade.

Howd’y, USA!

In US economic data, non-farm payrolls (employment) rose by 155,000 in November after a downwardly-revised gain of 237,000 in October (forecast +205,000). The jobless rate was steady at 3.7%. Average earnings rose by 0.2% (forecast +0.3%) with annual growth unchanged as forecast at 3.1%. Consumer sentiment steady at 97.5 in December (forecast 97).  US share markets recorded broad-based declines on Friday with key indexes down 2-3%. Concerns over the US-China trade dispute continue to linger. The Dow Jones lost 559 points or 2.2%. The S&P500 index was lower by 2.3% and the Nasdaq index was lower by 219 points or 3.1%. Over the week the Dow lost 4.5%, the S&P 500 fell by 4.6% and the Nasdaq lost 4.9%. US treasury bond prices rose on Friday (yields lower) after jobs data fell short of forecasts. Investors favoured bonds over equities on US-China trade concerns. US 2-year yields fell by 5 points to 2.72% and US 10-year yields fell by 4 points to 2.86%. Over the week, US 2-year yields fell by 11.5 points and US 10-year yields fell by 12.5 points.

Zǎoshang hǎo, Asia

China November data: consumer prices +2.2% over year (forecast +2.4%). Producer prices +2.7% as expected. Exports +5.4% over year (forecast +10%). Imports +3% (forecast +14.5%). Trade surplus US$44.7bn (forecast +US$34bn) 

Bonjour, Europe

European share markets were generally higher on Friday. The oil & gas index rose 2.2% but the trade-sensitive autos sector fell 0.2%  The pan-European STOXX600 index rose by 0.6% and the UK FTSE rose by 1.1% but the German Dax index lost 0.2%. In London trade, shares of Rio Tinto up 2% with BHP up by 2.5%.

Top of the morning, London

Base metal prices were higher by up to 1.1% on the London Metal Exchange on Friday with copper up the most. But zinc fell by 1.0%. Over the week metals were mixed with tin up 3.4% and nickel down by 2.6%. The gold futures price rose by US$9.00 an ounce or 0.1% to $1,252.60 an ounce. The spot gold price was trading near US$1,248 an ounce in late US tradeOn the week gold rose by US$26.60 or 2.2%. Iron ore rose by US85 cents or 1.3% to US$66.95 a tonne. On the week iron ore rose US$1.50 or 2.3%.

G’day, Australia

In Australia, housing finance data is released. Reserve Bank assistant Governor Christopher Kent delivers a speech. In the US, the JOLTS job openings series is released.