From Australia, yesterday, NAB Business Confidence figures were released. The business conditions index moved 3pts higher to +21 index points. This is a record high since the monthly survey commenced in March 1997, although the same measure in NAB’s quarterly survey reached this level in 1994. According to Alan Oster, NAB Group Chief Economist “The record level for the NAB Monthly Business Survey business conditions index indicates that business activity in Australia is robust. Moreover, the strength in conditions is broad based across industry groups.” In contrast, the business confidence index declined by 2pts to +9 index points. According to Mr Oster “The fall in confidence may reflect the turbulence seen in international financial markets in early February, but confidence remains above average suggesting that the impact was relatively limited”.

In the US session CPI data was published. The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) increased 0.2 percent in February on a seasonally adjusted basis after rising 0.5 percent in January, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Over the last 12 months,nthe all items index rose 2.2 percent before seasonal adjustment. The indexes for shelter, apparel, and motor vehicle insurance all rose and contributed to the 1-month seasonally adjusted increase in the all items index. The food index was unchanged in February, as a decline in the index for food at home offset an increase in the food away from home index.


There will be no major data releases from Australia tomorrow, but from China Industrial Production data will be published. Incline by 6.3% is anticipated. In the US session Retail Sales and PPI figures will be released. Analysts predict 0.1% increase in PPI and 0.3% growth in Retail Sales.


Figures to watch:


China Industrial Production (Wednesday 3:00)

PPI (Wednesday 14:30)

Retail Sales (Wednesday 14:30)

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