SHANGHAI, May 16 (SMM) – This is a roundup of global macroeconomic news last night and what is expected today.
The US dollar retreated after a gain and ended flat on the day on disappointing data on the US retail sales for April.
Base metals, except for LME tin, rose across the board as LME nickel jumped 1.76%, zinc grew 1.58%, aluminium rose 0.68%, copper gained 0.56%, and lead expanded 0.28%. SHFE zinc and nickel climbed more than 1%, lead advanced 0.75%, aluminum increased 0.38%, copper rose 0.29%, and tin ended 0.18% higher.
The Trump administration planned to delay a decision on instituting new tariffs on car and auto part imports for up to six months. The news helped stocks to recover from early-morning losses and move into positive territory.
Retail sales figures for April showed that US retailers are seeing slower purchases for a second time in three months, declining 0.2% in April, compared with the expected increase of 0.2%. Car sales dropped 1.1% last month and sales at electronics and appliance stores dropped 1.3%.
The Federal Reserve said industrial production fell 0.5% in April after rising 0.2% in March. The third drop in production this year was led by manufacturing. Output at factories declined 0.5% as motor vehicles and parts production tumbled 2.6%.
Automobile assembly plants are cutting back production as slowing sales grew stocks of vehicles in showrooms.
China also reported surprisingly weaker growth in retail sales and industrial output for April on Wednesday, adding pressure on Beijing to roll out more stimulus as the trade war with the US escalates.
Overall retail sales in April rose 7.2% from a year earlier, the slowest pace since May 2003, data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) showed. This compared to 8.7% in March and the expected of 8.6%.
Growth in China's industrial output settled at 5.4% in April as compared to 8.5% in the previous month, pointing to overall steadiness in the world's second-biggest economy, NBS said in a statement.
In the first four months of 2019, the year-on-year growth rate of industrial output came in at 6.2%, in line with a full-year average reading of 2018.
The production and supply of electricity, thermal power, gas, and water went up 9.5% year on year in April, while output growth of the mining sector climbed by 2.9%, a dip of 1.7% from March.
Adding to worries about domestic demand, Wednesday’s data also showed an unexpected decline in investment. Fixed-asset investment growth slowed to 6.1% in the first four months of this year, missing the expectations for a slight rise to 6.4%.
In Europe, the German economy recovered again in the first three months of this year, with the gross domestic product (GDP) expanding by 0.4% on a quarter-on-quarter basis, data published by the federal statistics authority, Destatis, showed.
Compared with the same quarter of the previous year, the economy grew by 0.7% from January to March, calendar-adjusted data showed.
The Energy Information Administration (EIA) on Wednesday reported that US crude supplies rose by 5.43 million barrels for the week ended May 10, after shrank by 3.96 million barrels during the previous week.
The EIA data also showed that gasoline inventories shrank 1.1 million barrels, while distillate stockpiles grew 100,000 barrels last week.
The US will release data on its weekly unemployment claims, as well as building permits and housing starts for April.