St George Economics economy and finance update

Share Markets:

Following a solid run in recent weeks, US equity markets took a breather last night. There was no new economic news and European markets were equally lacklustre.


With equities flat, bonds remained in a very tight range overnight. German 10 year bond yields closed unchanged at 1.96% while US long bonds saw yields edged up 1 basis point to 1.96%. Australian 10 year bond yields now stand at 3.45%.

Foreign Exchange:

Comments out of Europe and Japan stirred markets last night. Talk of 'currency wars' has unsettled some players to the point where the G7 appears set to release a paper reiterating their combined belief in market determined exchange rates.

An ECB council member Jens Weidmann expressed his belief that the euro had not become overvalued while Japan's Economy Minister suggested that Japan had further to go in easing monetary policy.

The US dollar gained against yen, moved lower against the euro and was marginally stronger against the AUD overnight.


Oil prices rose for the first time in four days more on currency movements than on news about the global economy or supply issues.

Both copper and gold prices slipped lower pulling the overall commodities index down.


Housing finance fell 1.5% in December, driven by a decline in refinancing and a fall in first home buyer demand (due to changes to first home buyers' grants in NSW and Queensland).

Excluding refinancing, new home loans slipped 0.1% in December, although it was the third consecutive monthly decline in this measure.

Although the weakness in December's housing finance may have been exacerbated by temporary factors, it appears likely the demand for housing finance has tapered off in recent months.


No data released.


No data of note released.


According to the head of the Asian Development Bank, recent actions by the Bank of Japan to ease monetary settings could usher in significant growth for the Japanese economy.

Japan's Economy Minister, Akira Amari has noted that Japan has room to further ease monetary policy.

The Minister appears to be in the running to become the next head of the Bank of Japan.

United States:

No data of significance released.

Please read the disclaimer below (to enlarge, press ctrl-+ on modern browsers)

The information contained in this report (the Information) is provided for, and is only to be used by, persons in Australia. The information may not comply with the laws of another jurisdiction. The Information is general in nature and does not take into account the particular investment objectives or financial situation of any potential reader. It does not constitute, and should not be relied on as, financial or investment advice or recommendations (expressed or implied) and is not an invitation to take up securities or other financial products or services. No decision should be made on the basis of the Information without first seeking expert financial advice. For persons with whom St.George has a contract to supply Information, the supply of the Information is made under that contract and St.George's agreed terms of supply apply. St.George does not represent or guarantee that the Information is accurate or free from errors or omissions and St.George disclaims any duty of care in relation to the Information and liability for any reliance on investment decisions made using the Information. The Information is subject to change. Terms, conditions and any fees apply to St. George products and details are available. St.George or its officers, agents or employees (including persons involved in preparation of the Information) may have financial interests in the markets discussed in the Information. St.George owns copyright in the Information unless otherwise indicated. The Information should not be reproduced, distributed, linked or transmitted without the written consent of St.George.

Topics:  economy finance st george

Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Murderer used Beerburrum forest as dumping ground

Deceased woman Tia Landers. Her accused murderers have been sentenced to life imprisonment.

Landers wasn't the first person Harris buried in Beerburrum forest

More jobs created by Ipswich investment worth millions

The company has invested $4 million in Ipswich

Local Partners

Azealia Banks won't take legal action against Russell Crowe

Rapper Azealia Banks

Rapper drops legal action against Russell Crowe

Brad Pitt meets with his kids amid divorce proceedings

Actor Brad Pitt

Brad Pitt has met up with his oldest son Maddox

Pictures of Taylor Swift allegedly being groped are sealed

They could "complicate jury selection".

Bruce Springsteen finds therapy useful

Singer Bruce Springsteen

Singer encourages others to seek help

Kerry Washington wants one more child

Kerry Washington recently gave birth to her second child

Kerry has only just become a new mum again

TRAVEL: Musicals light up Sydney

David Campbell performs in Dream Lover.

We take a trip through one of Sydney's finer scenes

Hit songwriter's Noosa mansion on market

SPECIAL PLACE: The Cintamani estate is going to tender, marketed by Tom Offermann Real Estate.

Is this Queensland's best property?

Kiwi siblings snap up Dotcom mansion for $32.5m

The new toy company owners of the Coatesville mansion want replace any controversy with positivity and fun. Photo / Barfoot and Thompson

The trio paid $32.5 million for the property in June

New $200 million development will create 580 jobs

Cassie And Josh with baby Alfie and daughter Andee. They have bought at new Lennox Head development Epiq.

Majority of new positions will be given to Northern Rivers locals

Cherrabah's mega resort plans axed

PLANS for a massive development at Cherrabah have been scrapped.

What our mayor thinks of the new draft SEQPlan

The plan to use the innovative technology as part of the new Maroochydore CBD was cemented on site today when Mayor Mark Jamieson and Envac Asia Region president Chun Yong Ha formally signed the contract for the $20 million underground waste collection system.

New plan accommodates Sunshine Coast Council's vision for growth.

Dusit Thani finance crisis 'just a small hiccup'

ON TRACK: Springfield Land Chairman, Maha Sinnathamby, Ipswich Mayor Paul Pisasale, Developer Richard Turner and Springfield Land Deputy Chairman, Bob Sharpless, at the recent resort sod turning ceremony.

Property developer says project remains firmly on track