Market Talk - Friday, May 21


Trade between China and the US continued an upward trend in the past four months, official data showed, highlighting inseparable economic relations between the two countries. In the first four months of the year, China’s trade with the US rose 50.3 percent year-on-year to 1.44 trillion yuan ($222.8 billion), making the US its third largest trading partner after the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and EU economies, according to data from the General Administration of Customs on Friday. China’s exports to the US rose 49.3 percent while imports gained 53.3 percent, and the trade surplus with the US was 653.89 billion yuan, an increase of 47 percent.

The Reserve Bank of India’s board approved a significantly higher than expected surplus transfer to the government on Friday but it may not be enough to cushion the damage from a crippling second wave of the novel coronavirus. The RBI announced a surplus transfer of 991.22 billion rupees ($13.58 billion) for the 9-month period from July 2020 to March 2021, the central bank said in a statement. The bank will move to an April to March accounting year from 2021/22, from a July to June year. The government had budgeted to receive a surplus of about 500 billion rupees from the RBI to be accounted for in the budget for 2021/22, while in the previous full accounting year, the RBI had transferred 571.28 billion rupees as surplus. The higher-than-expected dividend or surplus transfer to the government comes as the government is expecting a sharp sequential fall in tax collections due to the severe second wave of COVID-19 which has forced lockdowns in several states.

The major Asian stock markets had a mixed day today:

  • NIKKEI 225 increased 219.58 points or 0.78% to 28,317.83
  • Shanghai decreased 20.39 points or -0.58% to 3,486.56
  • Hang Seng increased 8.15 points or 0.03% to 28,458.44
  • ASX 200 increased 10.70 points or 0.15% to 7,030.30
  • Kospi decreased 5.86 points or -0.19% to 3,156.42
  • SENSEX increased 975.62 points or 1.97% to 50,540.48
  • Nifty50 increased 269.25 points or 1.81% to 15,175.30

The major Asian currency markets had a mixed day today:

  • AUDUSD decreased 0.00419 or -0.54% to 0.77306
  • NZDUSD decreased 0.00317 or -0.44% to 0.71649
  • USDJPY increased 0.09 or 0.08% to 108.93
  • USDCNY increased 0.00511 or 0.08% to 6.43716

Precious Metals:

  • Gold increased 2.42 USD/t oz. or 0.13% to 1,879.11
  • Silver decreased 0.17 USD/t. oz or -0.62% to 27.569
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