Much has been occurring in global markets, that are likely to have flow-on affects for Australia. U.S. consumer confidence approached a five-year high as the biggest part of the economy benefits from improving job and housing markets adding to signs of a sustained recovery of the world’s largest economy. Some data below (as provided by Citibank):
- U.S. jobless claims fell by 23,000 to 340,000
- Sales of new U.S. homes climbed in April to the second-highest level in almost five years as lower borrowing costs and job gains drew more buyers into the market. Purchases rose 2.3 per cent to an annualized pace of 454,000 homes from 444,000 in March.
China’s manufacturing is contracting in May for the first time in seven months. The preliminary reading for a Purchasing Managers’ Index of manufacturing was 49.6 in May opposed to 50.4 in April.
European stocks dropped the most in 10 months after the Federal Reserve signalled it will scale back its stimulus if the U.S. economy improves and as data showed Chinese manufacturing shrank.