The Weekly Wrap – Updates on Russia and Ukraine sent markets spinning

Outside the United States

Inflation and unemployment insurance claims were the main statistics of the week.

In the week ending 3rd In March, initial jobless claims rose from 216,000 to 227,000. More importantly, the annual rate of inflation accelerated from 7.5% to 7.9%. The annual core inflation rate rose from 6.0% to 6.4%, throwing even more uncertainty on the Fed’s monetary policy in the markets.

In the week ending 4and In March, the Dollar Spot Index rose 0.48% to end the week at 99.124. The previous week, the index jumped 2.10% to 98.648.

Outside the UK

Industrial and manufacturing production, GDP and trade data were in focus. The statistics were mixed for the pound.

Industrial and manufacturing production rose 0.7% and 0.8%, respectively, in January. The economy grew 0.8%, reversing a 0.2% contraction from the previous month.

Trade data disappointed, however. The UK’s trade deficit widened by £12.53 billion to £26.50 billion in January.

During the week, the pound slipped 1.46% to end the week at $1.3037. Over the previous week, the pound fell 1.33% to $1.3230.

The FTSE100 ended the week up 2.41%, partially reversing a 6.71% drop from the previous week.

Outside the euro area

The German economy was the center of attention at the start of the week. Impressive figures provided little support, however, with January’s figures failing to reflect the impact of sanctions on the German economy.

In January, factory orders rose 1.8%, with industrial production up 2.7%. Consumer spending also increased, despite the continued rise in consumer prices. Retail sales rose 2.7% in January.

Other statistics, including eurozone GDP and inflation figures from member states, attracted even less attention as the ECB was in action.

In line with market expectations, the ECB left its key rates unchanged on Thursday. The ECB announced that it would end asset purchases sooner than expected.

The most hawkish stance came despite ECB President Lagarde conceding that Russia’s invasion of Ukraine would have a significant impact on economic activity and inflation.

For the week, the EUR slipped 0.15% to $1.0912. The previous week, the euro slipped 3.02% to $1.0928.

The EuroStoxx600 rose 2.23%, with the CAC40 and DAX ending the week up 3.28% and 4.07%, respectively.

For the loon

Trade and employment figures were upbeat during the week.

In January, Canada’s trade balance rose from C$1.58 billion to C$2.62 billion.

More importantly, employment jumped 336.6k in February, reversing a decline of 200.1k from January. As a result, the unemployment rate fell from 6.5% to 5.5%.

In the week ending 11and In March, the Loonie slipped 0.10% to C$1.2744 against the greenback. In the previous week, the Loonie was down 0.14% at C$1.2731.

Elsewhere

It was a bearish week for the Australian dollar and the Kiwi dollar.

The Australian dollar slipped 1.04% to $0.7293, with the Kiwi dollar falling 0.74% to end the week at $0.6809.

For the Australian dollar

Business and consumer confidence delivered mixed results over the week.

In February, the NAB Business Confidence Index rose from 4.0 to 13.0. However, consumer confidence has waned. In March, the Westpac consumer confidence index fell 4.2%, after falling 1.3% in February.

For the kiwi dollar

Economic data was limited to retail electronic card sales and corporate PMI figures.

In February, retail sales of electronic cards fell 7.8%, offsetting a 3.0% increase from January. The business PMI rose from 52.3 to 53.6 but was not enough to reverse losses in the Kiwi dollar, which turned deep red on Friday.

For the Japanese yen

GDP and household spending figures were in focus, with the statistics turning negative over the week.

In the 4and quarter, the Japanese economy grew 1.1%, down from an initial rate of 1.4%. Year-over-year, the economy grew 4.6%, down from a preliminary 5.6%.

Household spending also failed to impress. In January, spending fell 1.2%, offsetting a 0.2% increase from December.

The Japanese yen fell 2.15% to end the week at ¥117.290 against the dollar. The previous week, the yen ended the week up 0.63% at ¥114.820.

Outside of China

China’s trade and inflation data also had a limited impact on global financial markets, despite upbeat numbers.

China’s trade surplus in USD fell from $94.46 billion to $115.95 billion in February. The annual inflation rate remained at 0.9%, which was also positive for the market.

In the week ending 11and In March, the Chinese yuan fell 0.31 to CNY 6.3393. In the previous week, the yuan ended the week up 0.03% at CNY 6.3195.

The Hang Seng Index and the CSI300 ended the week down 6.17% and 4.22%, respectively.