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Prospects Daily: Gold, silver continue declines, US leading indicator improves, Thailand and Chile GDP growth slows

Global Macroeconomics Team's picture
Financial Markets…The yen gained the most in three weeks versus the dollar on Monday, appreciating 0.7% to 102.56 per dollar, after Japan’s economy minister suggested further slide in the currency may have negative effects. Japan’s currency declined 21% in the past six months and fell to a 41/2 year low last week. Weaker yen have pushed Japanese government bonds lower and sent the country’ benchmark stock index to a 41/2 year high.

Silver for June delivery dropped to the lowest level since September 2010, sliding as much as 9.4% to $20.25 an ounce, while gold for June settlement fell for an eight consecutive session (the longest slump in four years), falling as much as 2.1% to $1,336.30 an ounce. Prices for silver and gold have tumbled 28% and 19% thus far this year, respectively.

Indian’s stocks fell from more than a two-year high today, with the benchmark Sensex index sliding 0.3%, on high valuation concern. The Sensex has bounced back 11% from a seven-month low reached on April 9 as oversea investors increased their purchases of local stocks following the rate cut by the central bank. The Indian share has been the best performer among benchmarks in the so-called BRIC countries this year.

High-income EconomiesItaly's industrial new orders grew 1.6% (m/m sa) in March from the prior month, due to a 3.6% rise in non-domestic orders, while domestic orders increased only 0.2%. However, industrial orders contracted by 12.5% (3m/3m saar) in March, a further decline compared to 11.9% decline in February.

UK’s house prices hit a record in May, as new sellers raised their prices by 2.1% (m/m) from the prior month. Prices were up by the same magnitude in April and this was a fifth consecutive monthly growth which has left prices 9.1% higher year-to-date.

US leading economic indicators index grew by 3.7% (3m/3m saar) in April, slightly down from 3.8% in the previous month. However, it expanded 0.6% (m/m) in April after a revised 0.2% contraction in March, led by improvements in building permits and interest rate spread.

Developing EconomiesEast Asia and the Pacific: Thailand’s GDP contracted by 8.4% (q/q saar) in 2013Q1, sharply down from a growth of 11.7% (q/q saar) in the previous quarter. The slowdown was largely due to sluggish domestic demand and soft exports. On y/y basis Thai GDP expanded 5.3% in Q1.

Latin America and the Caribbean: Chile’s GDP growth slowed in 213Q1 to 2% (q/q saar), down from 6.1% (q/q saar) in the previous quarter led by slowdown in investments, consumption and sluggish exports. On y/y basis, Chilean GDP expanded 4.1% in Q1.