Markets Overview

  • ASX SPI 200 futures up 0.4% to 7,261.00
  • Dow Average up 0.6% to 34,177.33
  • Aussie up 1.0% to 0.6971 per US$
  • U.S. 10-year yield fell 9.3bps to 3.4473%
  • Australia 3-year bond yield fell 13 bps to 3.22%
  • Australia 10-year bond yield fell 12 bps to 3.60%
  • Gold spot up 1.2% to $1,897.37
  • Brent futures up 1.6% to $84.00/bbl

Economic Events

  • 11:30: (AU) Nov. Investor Loan Value MoM, prior -2.2%
  • 11:30: (AU) Nov. Owner-Occupier Loan Value MoM, prior -2.9%
  • 11:30: (AU) Nov. Home Loans Value MoM, est. -2.0%, prior -2.7%

Treasury yields slumped as inflation showed signs of easing, which could make the case for the Federal Reserve to slow its pace of rate hikes to prevent a harsher economic downturn. Stocks saw mild gains.

Wall Street looked past its initial disappointment with a just in-line consumer price index to focus on the idea that an inflation peak is possibly in the rear view. That perception is visible in the swap market, which is showing less than 50 basis points of tightening priced in for the next two Fed gatherings — a small chance of no move at all in March.

None of that means, of course, the Fed will soon declare victory over inflation. No. Resilient consumer demand, particularly for services, combined with a tight labor market is still a significant threat to prices. But the figures overall show things seem to be going in the right direction, paving the way for the Fed to downshift to a quarter-point hike at its next meeting.

Other News

An old map believed to mark the spot where German soldiers hid treasure worth millions of euros during World War Two sparked the imagination of amateur treasure hunters in the Netherlands this week.

Armed with metal detectors and shovels, groups wandered through the fields surrounding rural Ommeren in the east of the country after the map was made public by the Dutch National Archive on Tuesday.

The archive said the map was believed to indicate where Nazi soldiers had hidden four large boxes filled with diamonds, rubies, gold, silver and all sorts of jewellery which they had looted after an explosion at a bank in August 1944.

The map was obtained from a German soldier shortly after the war by the Dutch institute that was tasked with tracing German capital in the Netherlands after the country was freed from Nazi occupation in 1945.

The research file which held the map was released this week as the maximum period of 75 years during which it could be held confidential had lapsed.

Although the existence of the treasure could never fully be confirmed, the institute undertook various failed attempts to find it in 1947, National Archive spokeswoman Anne-Marieke Samson told Reuters.

“We don’t know for sure if the treasure existed. But the institute did a lot of checks and found the story reliable,” Samson said.

“But they never found it and if it existed, the treasure might very well have been dug up already.”

But the small chance of finding any valuables did not deter the amateur gold-diggers.

“I see groups of people with metal detectors everywhere,” 57-year old Jan Henzen told Reuters as he took a break from his own search.

“Like a lot of people, the news about the treasure made me go look for myself. The chance of the treasure still being here after 70 years is very small I think, but I want to give it a try.”

Former Ommeren mayor Klaas Tammes, who now runs the foundation that owns the lands that might hide the treasure, said he had seen people from all over the country.

“A map with a row of three trees and a red cross marking a spot where a treasure should be hidden sparks the imagination,” he said.

“Anyone who finds anything will have to report it to us, so we’ll see. But I wouldn’t expect it to be easy.”