Markets Overview

  • ASX SPI 200 futures up 0.2% to 7,497.00
  • Dow Average down 0.2% to 37,915.13
  • Aussie little changed at 0.6573 per US$
  • U.S. 10-year yield rose 3.4bps to 4.1397%
  • Australia 3-year bond yield fell 4.6 bps to 3.79%
  • Australia 10-year bond yield fell 4 bps to 4.19%
  • Gold spot up 0.4% to $2,029.98
  • Brent futures down 0.5% to $79.67/bbl

Economic Events

  • 09:00: (AU) Jan. Judo Bank Australia PMI Servic, prior 47.1
  • 09:00: (AU) Jan. Judo Bank Australia PMI Compos, prior 46.9
  • 09:00: (AU) Jan. Judo Bank Australia PMI Mfg, prior 47.6
  • 10:30: (AU) Dec. Westpac Leading Index MoM, prior 0.07%
  • 11:00: (AU) Australia to Sell A$800 Million 3% 2033 Bonds

US stocks eked out a gain Tuesday, setting fresh closing highs ahead of an onslaught of company reports that promise insight into the state of the global economy.

The S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 both closed at all-time highs for the second day this week, while the cyclically-oriented Dow Jones Industrial Average slid 0.3%.

Equities have largely been immune to the Federal Reserve’s warnings that interest-rate cuts are a ways off. Instead investors have cheered the economy’s resilience even after the most aggressive policy-tightening cycle in decades.

But some corners of Wall Street are starting to question if the rally will endure as swaps traders in the US rein in bets of a March rate cut.

Treasury yields mostly edged higher Tuesday with the benchmark 10-year at 4.14%. The rate on policy-sensitive two-year fell 1 basis point to 4.38%.


Other News

Former Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison has announced he will retire from politics in February, ending a prolonged period of speculation over his future following an election defeat in 2022.

In a post to his Facebook, the 55-year-old said he would be resigning from parliament by the end of February to “take on new challenges in the global corporate sector and spend more time with my family.”

Morrison thanked his family, friends and voters for giving him the opportunity to “serve my country at the highest level and make Australia a stronger, more secure and more prosperous country.”

First elected to the New South Wales seat of Cook in 2007, Morrison rose quickly through the ranks of the center-right Liberal Party. He was initially known for implementing the government’s hardline crackdown on asylum seekers arriving by boat, then went on to become treasurer in 2015 and prime minister in 2018.

A devout Christian, when Morrison unexpectedly won the 2019 election he told a jubilant crowd that he had “always believed in miracles.”

However, Morrison’s time in power will be mainly remembered for the Covid-19 pandemic, during which he oversaw strict border controls to limit all travel in and out of Australia and deployed a massive fiscal stimulus.

His tough response was initially very popular. However, as restrictions were gradually lifted, the government was increasingly perceived as bungling important initiatives such as vaccinations, resulting in his approval rating falling sharply.

After losing the 2022 election to Labor’s Anthony Albanese, it was revealed that Morrison had secretly sworn himself into several ministerial portfolios during the pandemic, sparking fury from members of his own party.

Some lawmakers called for Morrison to resign, but the former prime minister stayed on as the member for Cook for more than 18 months after his election defeat — a historically unusual step for a former Australian leader whose party has lost office.