Wall Street in limbo ahead of Powell

A choppy session on Wall Street left US indices little changed at the close as the markets await Fed Chairman Powell’s speech at the Jackson Hole symposium. A positive start soured after PMI data came in weaker than expected.

US30USD Daily Chart

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The US30 index hit the highest in nine days yesterday before closing lower on the day

The index tested the 100-day moving average at 26,293 but again failed to close above it

The US August flash manufacturing PMI from Markit fell below the key 50 contraction/expansion threshold for the first time since 2009. Analysts had been expecting an improvement to 50.5 from 50.4. There’s a slew of Fed speakers at Jackson Hole today, including Bullard, Kaplan, Mester and Harker before Jerome Powell headlines at 2200 Singapore time.

De30EUR Daily Chart

The Germany30 index retreated from a two-week high to close lower yesterday, despite positive vibes from Brexit comments and better-than-forecast PMI data

The index touched the highest since August 9 yesterday and is rising toward the 100-day moving average at 12,117

Germany’s flash manufacturing PMI from Markit jumped to 43.6 in August, confounding analysts expectations of a drop to 43.0. It was still the 15th straight month in contraction territory. There are no major data releases from either Germany or the Euro-zone scheduled for today.

CN50USD Daily Chart

The China50 index fell yesterday after failing to take out the previous day’s three-week high

The index has held above the 55-day moving average for the past three days. That moving average is now at 13,381

China Premier Li Keqiang said he hopes China, Japan and South Korea can reach a free trade pact early. That could be a tough call given how the relationship between the latter two has deteriorated in the last few weeks. Yesterday South Korea said it would withdraw from an intelligence-sharing pact between the two countries in response to Japan’s move to remove it from a list of trusted export countries.

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