US equities slid lower overnight, as Retail Sales missed expectations and the Debt Ceiling negotiations stumble along, threateningly. US Retail Sales missed projections, coming in at 0.4%, while Industrial and Manufacturing data was extremely weak and insipid. German and EU ZEW Economic Sentiment collapsed in May, plunging deeply into negative territory, while EU Q1 GDP numbers were fantastically 0.1%? EU GDP for the Q4 was zero and Q1 is expected to be 0.1, missing the definition of a recession by the tightest of margins, magically. The EUR traded 1.0850, while the GBP slipped below 1.2500, following weaker than expected employment numbers.
The RBA minutes revealed the surprise lift in interest rates, at the most recent meeting, was a close decision and ending the one meeting ‘pause’. The rate hikes are likely to continue, if inflation remains so high. The rising rates have unsettled the Consumer, with confidence collapsing, crashing to minus 7.9%! The Chinese Retail Sales and Industrial Production numbers were strong, but nowhere near the expected boom expected for April. These all contributed to a fall in the AUD, which fell below 0.6650, while the NZD held above 0.6200. Market attention will focus on growth and inflation, while the ‘Zombie Debt-Ceiling negotiations’ roll on. Local markets will look at Japanese GDP growth.