How’dy USA

In US data, the economy grew at a 3.2% annual pace in the March quarter, up from 2.2% growth in the December quarter (forecast +2.0%). The core personal consumption deflator - the Federal Reserve's preferred measure of inflation - grew at a 1.3% annual pace (forecast 1.6%). Consumer sentiment fell from 98.4 to 97.2 in April (forecast 97.0).

US share markets rose on Friday. The solid economic growth results boosted interest in stocks together with earnings results. Shares in Ford rose 10.7% and Amazon gained 2.5%. On the negative side, Intel fell 9% and Exxon Mobil fell by 2%. Shares in Walt Disney rose 2% on strong box office figures for 'Avengers: Endgame'. The Dow Jones rose by 81 points or 0.3%. The S&P500 index lifted by 0.5% to record highs. And the Nasdaq index gained almost 28 points or 0.3% to record highs. Over the week the Dow lost 0.1% but the S&P 500 rose by 1.2% and the Nasdaq rose by 1.9%

US treasuries were firmer on Friday (yields lower). Economic growth was firmer than expected but with inflation weaker than expected. US 2-year yields fell by 4 points to 2.29% and US 10- year yields fell 3 points to 2.50%. Over the week US 2-year yields fell by 6 points with US 10-year yields down 10 points. 

Bonjour Europe

European share markets generally rose on Friday. Banks, autos and healthcare rose. Investors were encouraged by earnings results from French drug maker Sanofi and French aero engine maker Safran. Also, US economic data boosted sentiment. The pan European STOXX600 index rose by 0.2%. The German Dax rose by 0.3% but the UK FTSE fell by 0.1% in response to a lower oil price. In London trade, shares of Rio Tinto rose by less than 0.1% while BHP rose by 0.1%.

Hello World!

Major currencies were mixed against the US dollar in US and European trade compared with the Asia close. The Euro broadly held between US$1.1125 and US$1.1175 and was near US$1.1150 in late US trade. The Aussie dollar broadly held from US70.20 cents and US70.60 cents and was near US70.40 cents in late US trade. And the Japanese yen lifted from 111.89 yen per US dollar to JPY111.42 and was around JPY111.50 in late US trade.

Global oil prices fell by around 3% on Friday to 3-week lows. Investors booked profits after US President Trump again put pressure on OPEC nations to lower the oil price. But supporting prices was data showing that the number of oil rigs in operation in the US fell by 20 to 805 in the past week. The Brent crude fell by US$2.20 or 3.0% to US$72.15 a barrel and US Nymex fell by US$1.91 or 2.9% to US$63.30 a barrel. Over the week Brent rose by 0.3% but Nymex fell by 1.1%.

Base metal prices were firmer on Friday, lifting up to 1.1% with lead up the most. The exception was aluminium, down 1.1%. Over the week metals fell by between 1.0-1.9%, except lead (+1%) and zinc (+0.7%).

The gold futures price rose by US$8.70 an ounce or 0.7% to $1,288.40 an ounce. The spot gold price was near US$1,286 an ounce in late US trade. Over the week gold rose by US$16.40 or 1.3%. Iron ore rose by US20 cents or 0.2% to US$92.80 a tonne. Over the week iron ore rose by US$1.00 or 1.1%.

G’day Australia

In Australia the CommSec State of the States report is released. In the US, personal income and spending data is released with the Dallas Federal Reserve manufacturing index.