Posted on 29th January 2015 by barry norman in Stockpair Daily Insight

stockpair-dailytips (2)

Stockpair traders should keep an eye on these events today:

Cur. Event
  EUR CPI (YoY) (Jan)
  USD GDP (QoQ) (Q4)
  CAD GDP (MoM) (Nov)

Facebook Soars

January 30, 2015

Barry Norman

facebook-hacking-1040cs051612Reports released today showed that in 2014, the top four apps in the world — Android and iOS — were Facebook properties, according to App Annie. Facebook Messenger led the charge, while Facebook was second. WhatsApp was third, while Instagram was the fourth most downloaded app of 2014.

Facebook has been releasing focused apps like Stickered or Rooms, and existing apps like Paper or Messenger have been seeing impressive improvements over time. WhatsApp and Instagram both boast increased user metrics, too.

Facebook just reported their third quarter earnings for 2014, and they are pretty impressive. For all the attention paid to Facebook tanking, or a possible ‘killer’ on the horizon, the social networking giant just steamrolls the competition time and again. This time, they’ve had their first $3 billion quarter, returning $3.2 billion in revenue.

Facebook earned $12.5 billion, making 2014 their first $10 billion year. In 2013, Facebook brought in $7.9 billion. Their earnings for 2014 are nearly double what they brought in for 2012. Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg said “we got a lot done in 2014.”

alibabaMoving from the social media giant to the e-commerce giant, Alibaba disappointed investors.  At first glance, the smartphone figures Alibaba posted Thursday in its first full quarterly earnings report appeared stellar. The company collected more than $1 billion in mobile revenue. Some 42 percent of all the transactions across its online marketplaces were on smartphones and tablets.

But overall sales came in lower than analysts projected, missing by 1.5 billion yuan ($240 million). The mobile monetization rate increased but to less than 2 percent, a lot lower than the 2.7 percent overall rates. In other words, it’s harder to convert smartphone swipes than desktop clicks into sales.

Making the shift to mobile has been has been a priority for Alibaba since investors kept asking about the issue in the run-up to its record-breaking $25 billion IPO in September. Companies from Facebook to Alibaba’s local Chinese rival Tencent are battling to win customers who increasingly access the Internet by smartphone. China alone has 527 million mobile Internet users.

Posted on 28th January 2015 by barry norman in Stockpair Daily Insight

stockpair-dailytips (2)

Stockpair traders should keep an eye on these events today:

Cur. Event
  NZD RBNZ Rate Statement
  NZD Trade Balance
  JPY Retail Sales (YoY) (Dec)
  GBP Nationwide HPI (MoM)
  EUR German Unemployment
  EUR German CPI (MoM) (Jan)
  USD Initial Jobless Claims
  USD Pending Home Sales


Oil Inventory Continues To Climb

January 30, 2015

Barry Norman

oil downThe API said on Tuesday that the US oil inventory supply rose by a shocking 12.7 million barrels which sent oil prices trading lower on Wednesday as traders waited for the EIA official data. WTI dropped $1.08, or 2.3%, to $45.15 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude for March delivery traded down 56 cents, or 1.1%, at $49.04 a barrel on London’s ICE Futures exchange.

Oil production in the U.S. has surged in recent years on the back of a shale boom that has added to the global oversupply and pushed oil prices to their lowest level in more than 5 1/2 years.

Adding to the bearish outlook today, Barclays slashed its oil price forecasts for this year by around 40%, saying it expects a long period of oversupply stretching at least into early 2016. The bank cut its average price estimate for Brent to $44 a barrel from $72 and for WTI to $42 a barrel from $66. “We expect to see further downside to prices in the next few months, with both contracts likely to trade into the high $30s before the oil price decline is arrested,” Barclays said.


The EIA inventory today continue send prices lower reporting that US inventory supplies climbed by 8.874 million barrels against expectations of a climb of 4.08 million barrels. The harsh rise was offset but lower distillates and gasoline levels. The official release showed that Stocks of crude oil in the United States increased by 8.87BBL/1Million in the week ended January 24th, 2015. Crude Oil Stocks Change in the United States averaged 0.01 BBL/1Million from 1982 until 2014, reaching an all-time high of 12.49 BBL/1Million in April of 1985 and a record low of -15.22 BBL/1Million in January of 1999. Crude Oil Stocks Change in the United States is reported by the U.S. Energy Information Administration.


Posted on 27th January 2015 by barry norman in Stockpair Daily Insight

Stockpair traders should keep an eye on these events today:

Cur. Event
  AUD CPI (QoQ) (Q4)
  AUD Trimmed Mean CPI (QoQ)
  EUR GfK German Consumer
  USD FOMC Statement


Housing Data Soars As The US Dollar Eases

January 28, 2015

Barry Norman

art6As the two day Federal Reserve meeting gets underway, data in the US was a bit mixed. Durable goods orders missed expectations while consumer confidence, services PMI and housing sales soared above forecast. The Commerce Department reported that orders for long-lasting manufactured goods dropped 3.4 percent in December, dragged lower by a big decline in demand for commercial aircraft. There was also weakness in a number of areas, with demand for machinery, computer and primary metals all down. Economists had been forecasting a small increase for December.

A gauge of U.S. home values showed that home prices rose at a modest pace in November, held back by weaker sales and a limited number of available houses. The Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller 20-city home price index increased 4.3 percent in November from 12 months earlier. That’s down slightly from a 4.5 percent pace in October.

New home sales climbed 11.6 per cent in December from the previous month, to an annualized pace of 481,000 units. The figure was 8.8 per cent higher than the year ago levels, according to the latest data from the Department of Commerce.

Analysts on Wall Street had forecast a modest 2.7 per cent gain to an annualized rate of 450,000 units in the month. The rise in new home sales comes at a seasonally slow period for the housing market, with winter weather generally weighing on activity.

The US dollar plunged after the durable goods miss, trading at 84.22 down 106 points while the euro rallied to 143 points to 1.1381.


Posted on 26th January 2015 by barry norman in Stockpair Daily Insight

stockpair-dailytips (2)

Stockpair traders should keep an eye on these events today:

Cur. Event
  GBP GDP (QoQ) (Q4)
  GBP GDP (YoY) (Q4)
  USD Core Durable Goods Orders
  USD New Home Sales (Dec)


FOMC Just A Day Away

January 27, 2015

Barry Norman

dollar flyingThe US dollar eased a bit as traders booked profits and the Greek election ended along with market stress, even though the outcome was exactly what the markets feared. The dollar is trading at 95.02 and the euro recovered a few points to trade at 1.1280 as traders tried to figure out where the euro should be trading.  Focus will now turn to US data and the FOMC meeting. Tuesday will have new homes sales and durable goods just a day before the Federal Reserve meeting.

After the strong jobs data earlier this month the Federal Reserve is expected to take a positive view of the economy. If housing data and durable goods beat expectations the Fed could move up interest rate increases.

Although the underlying signs remain encouraging, a quick look at the table below shows that latest developments in labor data were mixed. To conclude, since the December FOMC meeting the US labor market recovery continued unabatedly, confirming its recent trend. The unemployment rate is rapidly approaching the NAIRU rate, but wage growth remains the missing link. Analysts suspect that the poor December wage data were partly due to special factors and still hope to see wages picking up later in the year. Traders believe that the poor wage data should not have a big impact on the Fed’s view regarding the labor market. After providing a positive view on the economy in December, the Fed will probably strike a more balanced tone this month following lower inflation data and extra easing measures from several other central banks.

EURUSD(15 Minutes)20150126204003


Posted on 25th January 2015 by barry norman in Stockpair Daily Insight

stockpair-dailytips (2)

Stockpair traders should keep an eye on these events today:

Cur. Event
  EUR German Business Expectations
  EUR German Current Assessment
  EUR German Ifo Business Climate Index
  EUR Retail Sales (MoM) (Dec)
  USD Services PMI (Jan)


Focus On The FOMC Statement

January 26 2015

Barry Norman

federal reserve goldAfter an exhausting fortnight of central bank action and volatility starting with the Swiss National Bank and moving to the Danish central bank and then the Bank of Canada surprise concluding with the massive stimulus plan announced by the ECB, currency traders are exhausted. But there is not a break seen, this week the FOMC meeting with be a key event along with a decision from the Reserve Bank of New Zealand.

The European Central Bank’s launch of an aggressive program this week to buy more than €1 trillion in bonds poses important tests for the U.S. economy and the Federal Reserve. Europe’s new program of money printing—and the resulting fall in the euro—means the U.S. economy must deal with a rapidly strengthening dollar that will make American goods more expensive abroad.

The stronger dollar could slow both U.S. growth and inflation, giving the Fed some incentive to hold off on its plan to raise short-term interest rates later this year from near zero. U.S. officials have been playing down that scenario, and, more broadly, resisting talk of a global currency war—competitive devaluations by countries eager to keep their currencies as low as possible to protect exports. The dollar has already gained 15% against the currencies of U.S. trade partners in the past year.  Among the factors driving the rise has been the U.S. economy’s strong performance amid a slowing global economy, as well as Fed signals of a likely rise in interest rates this year.


The Fed is expected to reiterate that those global risks have not yet put the US recovery or the Fed’s rate plans off track when it issues its policy statement at the close of its two-day meeting on Wednesday.

The timing of the Fed’s eventual rate move has been a top concern for investors. Stocks rallied when the Fed said after its December meeting that it would take a patient approach toward raising interest rates and gave an upbeat assessment of the US economy.

friday stock markets stockpair

Posted on 24th January 2015 by barry norman in Stockpair weekly Insights

Stockpair Weekly Market Wrap

 For The Week Ending January 23, 2015


Global Exchanges

UK stocks pushed higher on Friday, finishing at levels not seen in over four months, lifted by improving economic data and continued optimism surrounding a massive bond-buying plan by the European Central Bank

UK retail sales registered an unexpected 0.4% rise in December, boosted by an increased demand for fuel and steady sales over Christmas. Analysts had forecast sales to decline after 1.6% growth in November following the Black Friday sales. As such, sales were up 2.3% over the quarter as a whole, the highest quarterly increase since April 2002.

Business activity growth in the Eurozone accelerated at its fastest pace in five months, according to the preliminary January purchasing managers’ index (PMI) data published by Markit. The preliminary estimate of the Eurozone PMI composite output index rose from 51.4 in December to 52.2, ahead of the consensus estimate of 51.8.

Meanwhile, the HSBC/Markit Chinese manufacturing PMI edged higher to 49.8 in January from 49.6 the previous month; analysts had expected a slight dip to 49.5.

The major indexes have gained for four days in a row, through Thursday’s close. This week’s advance in stocks has left the Dow and S&P 500 just 1.3 per cent below their record highs. The ECB’s announcement of quantitative easing has temporarily helped soothe nerves about slowing global growth, investors say.

Hong Kong stocks jumped 1.34 per cent, topping off a strong week as investors followed a global rally in response to the European Central Bank’s bigger-than-expected stimulus program aimed at kick-starting the Eurozone economy.

The benchmark Hang Seng Index on Friday added 327.82 points to 24,850.45 on turnover of $HK106.06 billion.  In mainland China, the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index gained 0.25 per cent, or 8.42 points, to 3,351.76 on turnover of 421.0 billion yuan The index slid 0.73 per cent for the week.

global share markets stockpair

Currency Markets

ECB President Mario Draghi said in Frankfurt on Thursday that the central bank will buy private and public securities of as much as 60 billion euros ($68 billion) a month in program intended to run until September 2016. That implied more than 1.1 trillion euros will additionally circulate, potentially weakening the euro against the pound and other currencies.

The euro tumbled 2.5 percent in the week to $1.1276 and was as low as $1.1115, an 11-year record. The pound appreciated 1.8 percent to 75.02 pence per euro in the week through 4:55 p.m. Friday in London. It touched 74.28 pence that day, the strongest since February 2008. Sterling weakened 0.8 percent in period through Jan. 23 to $1.5029, having grazed $1.4952 the same day, the lowest since July 2013. The U.K. currency will strengthen to 72 pence per euro by year-end, Commerzbank’s Kinsella forecast.

global currency stockpair


Commodity Markets

Oil prices, which have slumped by more than 50 per cent since June, were volatile in Friday trading. After climbing earlier in the day, crude-oil futures fell 1.5 per cent to $US45.59 a barrel. The falling price of oil has weighed heavily on the shares of companies in the energy sector as well as companies that are sensitive to commodity prices.


Posted on 22nd January 2015 by barry norman in Stockpair Daily Insight


stockpair-dailytips (2)

Stockpair traders should keep an eye on these events today:

Cur. Event
  CNY HSBC Manufacturing PMI
  EUR German Manufacturing
  GBP Retail Sales (MoM) (Dec)
  CAD Core CPI (MoM) (Dec)
  CAD Core Retail Sales (Nov)
  USD Existing Home Sales (Dec)


How Low Will The Euro Go

January 23, 2015

Barry Norman

eurozone recessionThe euro is below the 1.14 level trading at a low not seen in a decade. The euro is currently exchanging at 1.1386 down 223 points since Mario Draghi’s press conference just a few hours ago. The ECB led by Mr. Draghi announced a massive stimulus program which exceeded market expectations. The ECB will begin its program of bond purchases in March, at 60 billion per month until September 2016. This is much more than the markets were expecting, as analysts were hoping for a program of 50 billion euros. Although this is some neat and creative accounting on Draghi’s side. If you calculate a program starting immediately at 50 billion euros per month through 2016 the net total would be virtually the same. Traders are more concerned with the here and now, so the higher monthly purchases have satisfied the markets requirement and desires.

At his press conference, you could see that Mr. Draghi was totally burned out with the last week of negotiations with the ECB and EU members and uncontrollable politics that weighed on the decision. The Swiss through a huge monkey wrench into the works but were smarter than most as they could not afford to keep their floor against today fall of the euro.

eurusd bns

The continued decline in oil prices just forces inflation lower and lower and then of course there is the political situation in Greece with the elections on Sunday and Italy without a President. What a mess. In Greece the anti-euro, anti-austerity party seems a shoe in to win.

greece-flag-button-abd-badgeGreece’s Prime Minister Antonis Samaras  who is about to lose this election said Thursday the European Central Bank’s debt-purchasing program will include Greece if a continuing review of the country’s bailout program is successfully completed. He added that this could be a lost opportunity under the main opposition party Syriza, which is leading in the polls and calling for an end to the austerity measures demanded by international creditors in exchange for Greece’s €240 billion rescue agreement.

The comments by Mr. Samaras came shortly after ECB President Mario Draghi said the central bank will purchase the government bonds of Eurozone countries, a landmark decision aimed at combating stagnation and ultralow inflation.

Greece needs to stick to the terms of its bailout, footed by the European Commission, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund, to be included in the ECB’s bond-buying program.

Posted on 21st January 2015 by barry norman in Stockpair Daily Insight

stockpair-dailytips (2)

Stockpair traders should keep an eye on these events today:

Cur. Event
  AUD HIA New Home Sales
  JPY BoJ Monthly Report
  GBP CBI Industrial Trends
  EUR Interest Rate Decision
  USD Initial Jobless Claims
  EUR ECB Press Conference


ECB Decision & Press Conference Countdown

January 22, 2015

Barry Norman

bank_of_canadaWho would have ever thought that the Bank of Canada would have reduced interest rates at this time? To the markets surprise the BoC dropped its prime lending rate by 25bps to 0.75%. This surprise following moves by the Swiss National Bank leave traders wondering if they can actually predict what to expect from Mario Draghi later today.

The BoC said that “Given the speed and magnitude of the oil-price decline, there is substantial uncertainty around the likely level for oil prices and their impact on the economic outlook for Canada.”  Oil prices have plunged to less than $50 US a barrel from more than $100 US in June last year.

In the wake of the rate cut, the loonie plunged more than 1.20 cents to 81.39 cents US — its lowest level since late April 2009.


usd cad stockpair

ecb logoMarket expectations are running very high ahead of today’s ECB policy meeting. In part, this reflects the tone of recent comments by senior ECB officials that suggest a significant policy imitative will be announced this time.  The sense that something momentous will be announced has been heightened by several recent and surprising developments such as the Swiss National Bank’s decision to abandon its currency ceiling against the Euro. Analysts emphasize the scale of expectations from the outset because on many occasions in the past, ECB policy pronouncements have significantly disappointed markets.  There can be little doubt that Mr Draghi and his colleagues are acutely aware of the risks in this regard. However, whether he can exceed expectations is unclear. As trading  sentiment looks to be particularly nervous at present and  probably too dependent on a continuing stream of good  news from central banks, Thursday has the potential to be  very important for markets as well as the broader economic  outlook for the Euro area.

eurusd stockpairs

Posted on 20th January 2015 by barry norman in Stockpair Daily Insight

stockpair-dailytips (2)

Stockpair traders should keep an eye on these events today:

Cur. Event
  NZD CPI (QoQ) (Q4 )
  JPY BoJ Press Conference
  GBP Claimant Count Change
  GBP MPC Meeting Minutes
  USD Building Permits (Dec)
  CAD Interest Rate Decision


Crude Oil Should Continue To Fall This Month

January 21, 2015

Barry Norman

Oil-Price-down-600x600The IMF cut its forecast for global growth in 2015 by three-tenths of a percent to 3.5 percent and called on governments and central banks to pursue accommodative monetary policies and reforms. Oil prices steadied after an initial dip on prospects of weaker demand in China, the world’s second-largest economy. Oil is expected to continue to decline. Binary option traders should look at a long term trade for the oil to fall as Saudi’s claim they can afford for oil to drop for 8 years.  Crude oil continued to decline today down by $1.14 at 47.99. Mohammad Al Sabban, who advised the kingdom on oil policy for 27 years until 2014, told the BBC the kingdom was “worried” about the sustained low prices but its policy was to maintain market share.

China’s economy grew 7.4 percent in 2014, just missing official forecasts of 7.5 percent, its slowest growth in 24 years. But fourth-quarter expansion held steady at 7.3 percent, marginally better than expected.

Saudi Arabia has refused to cut oil production despite prices falling by about 60 percent, to less than $50 per barrel, since June.

Al Sabban said the kingdom would wait out as long as possible in a bid to push shale oil producers out of the market.

“To shorten the cycle, you need to allow prices to go as low as possible to see those marginal producers move out of the market on the one hand and also if there is any increase in demand that will be welcomed,” he said.

A planned meeting between Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister and his Iranian counterpart for this week was postponed partly because of disagreement over the falling oil price, Bloomberg reported.

crude oil brent oil stockpair

The US Energy Information Administration (EIA) has released an energy outlook where it forecasts that Brent crude oil prices will average $58 in 2015. The lowest price for 2014 was $55 per barrel, while the average price for last year was almost $99. It seems like it will be awhile before Kazakhstan sees the $99 price again. EIA’s forecast for Brent crude oil prices in 2016 is $75. Over the past 30 years, the Brent spot price of $75 was most frequently seen during the period from 2006 to 2010.


Posted on 19th January 2015 by barry norman in Stockpair Daily Insight

stockpair-dailytips (2)

Stockpair traders should keep an eye on these events today:

Cur. Event
  CNY GDP (YoY) (Q4 )
  CNY GDP (QoQ) (Q4 )
  CNY Industrial Production (Dec)
  EUR German ZEW Economic

Deflation Fears Rise Ahead Of ECB

January 20, 2015

Barry Norman

inflation_v_deflation300 The euro surprised traders and added over 60 points today to trade at 1.1629 as traders had time to adjust to the Swiss National Bank decision last Thursday. In the absence of US investors, as markets are closed in observance of Martin Luther King’s Day, European shares extend their gains today. European indices gained up to 1% with the German DAX setting new record highs ahead of a crucial ECB meeting later this week. On Monday, currency markets had some kind of ‘calm before the storm experience. The sell‐off on the Chinese equity markets had very little impact on European equities. In technical trading, the euro rebounded after the post SNB sell‐off. EUR/USD is changing hands in the low 1.16 area, awaiting high profile event risk later this week. Traders sold off US dollar after the greenback hit a multiyear high late in the week at 93.20 falling to 92.74 on the US holiday.

Deflation fears remained on top markets’ minds over the previous weeks as the oil price continued to drop lower, with also spill-over effects into other commodity prices. While the drop in the oil price can be seen as a positive supply shock, markets tend to look at it from a negative side, especially in Europe where deflation fears are most acute, with headline inflation now in negative territory.

Eurozone CPI inflation fell sharply in December, from its cyclical annual low of 0.3% in November to -0.2% annually. The selloff in the oil price was the main factor behind lower headline inflation as core CPI even picked up slightly although remaining close to its record low. The oil price extended its downtrend during the first half of January, suggesting that headline inflation will remain downwardly oriented for some months to come.

The low inflation will cause the ECB to take drastic action as traders are now expecting a large QE package from Mr. Draghi this week.

eurusd stockpair