What grabbed the headlines last week?

On Friday, the ASX ended trading for 2023 on an entirely unsurprising low note, down by -0.3%.

    Via MarketIndex

Unspectacular, even in failure.

It’s not criticism, just a little whingeing as the benchmark ASX200 did in fact put in a rally Santa could be proud of over December, up by +8.21% which added heaps of icing to 2023’s final rise.

Basically, up +8.13 for the year, it’s December and Santa which got us well over the line.


ASX Sectors Last Week

On Friday, local shares tracked gains on Wall Street, as they have all year but without any of the American gusto which has lifted the S&P500 to within cooee of its record best.

Me mate Edward Scissorbrains Sunarto reports that a fair few analysts now believe next year could be even better in the states for epic equity as the ‘Magnificent Seven’ — Apple,  Amazon, Alphabet,  Meta, Tesla, Nvdia, Microsoft — are expected to post over 20% earnings growth in 2024.

Gold finished the year at US$2,063 an ounce, clambering about +13% higher in 2023 on the blood of its enemies (safety, security, certainty, lower rates and a decent USD) for its first yearly gain in 3.

Gold cracked a new record high last year, mostly supported by hopes central banks will begin stomping on interest rates.

The US Federal Reserve is now thought to kick off an easing cycle for cash as soon as March after end-year signals inflation has topped out.

Geopolitical tensions and the levelling of the Gaza Strip in the Middle East added furl to the safe-haven’s fire buying.


A Golden Year for Gold

Via TradingEconomics

The Week Ahead

Very quiet at home as the year begins with a wee pop, rather than at DefCon 5. The NFP report and Eurozone CPI will be the week’s focal point for global markets.

CoreLogic are out and about early with home prices, while the RBA mails in an always useful chart pack. Full of charts from December and the previous quarter. Me likee.

In the States, equity and bond markets get back into business tonight, (Sydenham time, Tuesday in New York) after taking Monday for the New Year.

Calendar 2024 trading on Wall Street kicks off for real with the latest slew of US jobs data, the absolute highlight of a holiday-quashed week, once the trickle of investors turns into a flood.

The US Bureau of Labor Stats drops Job Openings on Wednesday, the market expecting a slight monthly rise.

On Friday the number crunchers roll out December employment data. US unemployment is expected to come in at 3.8%, up from 3.7%.

Also on Wednesday, the Federal Open Market Committee will release the minutes from its mid-December monetary-policy meeting.

Canadian employment and Chinese PMIs might attract attention too.


The Aussie Economic Calendar

Tuesday January 2 – Friday January 5

All sources:  Trading Economics, IG Markets 



RBA Chart Pack
CoreLogic Dwelling Prices MoM

Judo Bank Services PMI / Composite PMI Final DEC



The Everyone Else Economic Calendar

Tuesday January 2 – Friday January 5


China Caixin Manufacturing PMI DEC
EU HCOB Manufacturing PMI Final DEC
EU Loans to Companies / Households YoY NOV
UK S&P Global/CIPS Manufacturing PMI Final DEC

CA S&P Global Manufacturing PMI DEC
US S&P Global Manufacturing PMI Final DEC
US Construction Spending MoM NOV
US 3-Month / 6-Month / Bill Auction / MBA 30-Year Mortgage Rate DEC
US MBA Purchase Index DEC

US Redbook YoY DEC
US ISM Manufacturing PMI DEC
US JOLTs Job Openings NOV
USnISM Manufacturing Employment DEC 45.8 46
US FOMC Minutes
CN Caixin Services PMI DEC
CN Caixin Composite PMI DEC
UK BoE Consumer Credit NOV
UK Mortgage Lending NOV
GB S&P Global/CIPS Services PMI Final

US Jobless Claims  DEC
CA S&P Global Composite PMI DEC
CA S&P Global Services PMI DEC
US S&P Global Composite / Global Services PMI Final DEC
GB Halifax House Price Index MoM DEC 0.5% 0.1%
GB New Car Sales YoY DEC
GB S&P Global/CIPS Construction PMI DEC
EU HCOB Construction PMI DEC
EU Inflation Rate YoY Flash DEC