Trump to slash Corporation Tax
Sterling lost ground against the Euro yesterday, hit by the single currency’s renewed strength as relieved investors became optimistic about Europe after the first round of the French presidential election. The Pound weakened to as much as 85.27 pence per Euro after a Reuters report was released, saying that European Central Bank (ECB) officials may now feel free to start tweaking its policy language in June towards a tighter monetary stance.
Data released yesterday showed that UK government borrowing declined. Despite being slightly above the Office of Budget Responsibilities projections, the deficit was the lowest for nine years and below 3.0% of GDP. The overall impact was limited as markets will be expecting a further fiscal adjustment after the June 8th election, although the changes will probably be limited if the current government is re-elected.
The US Dollar remained under some pressure against its key European counterparts, with both GBPUSD and EURUSD consolidating overnight gains. The greenback extended its recent slide as investors keenly await details of the US President Donald Trump’s promised package to overhaul the US tax code.
On the economic data front, a larger than expected decline in the US Consumer Confidence Index for April, which remained close to the 16-year high touched in March, added to the prevailing weaker sentiment surrounding the greenback. Meanwhile, the markets largely ignored a sharp upsurge in the New Home Sales data from the US. There is no macroeconomic data due for release on Wednesday and therefore, markets will eagerly await Trump’s big announcement on tax reforms.
With a French presidential election win for Macron all but priced in, attention turns to tomorrow’s ECB Policy meeting. The focus will be on the ECB’s Asset Purchase Programme “normalisation process” aka Tapering. With the French election risk seen to be in the past, the markets will be listening for any hint that the ECB will lower a number of monthly purchases in the future.
Data to Watch:
2:30am AUD RBA trimmed mean CPI (QoQ) (Q1), Consumer Price Index (QoQ) (Q1). 5:30am JPY All Industry Activity Index (MoM) (Feb). 7:00am CHF UBS Consumption Indicator (Mar). 9:00am CHF ZEW Survey – Expectations (Apr).