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In the loop 14 January 2022

In the loop

Shireen Darmalingam

What you should know this morning:

  • The rand is stronger this morning, at R15.37/$, after closing weaker yesterday (R15.39/$*).
  • EM currencies were mixed yesterday; the CLP (+0.7%), THB (+0.5%) and PHP (+0.3%) were amongst the biggest gainers; the TRY (-2.4%), RUB (-2.1%) and CZK (-0.9%) were amongst the biggest losers.
  • Asian equity markets the Nikkei, Hang Seng and Shanghai Composite are down.
  • The UK is expected to abandon its Covid passes as the Omicron wave subsides. 
  • The UK has confirmed that the self-isolation period will be cut in England from seven to five full days.
  • This comes on increasing pressure from business and health sectors over the impact of Omicron-linked absences from work.
  • Canada will impose a vaccine requirement on all truckers entering from the US, which would further affect supply chains.
  • Norway is scaling back some infection restrictions as it moves to a new phase of the pandemic. 
  • Growth in China’s exports and imports moderated in December.
  • Exports increased by 20.9% y/y in December, from November’s 20% y/y increase.
  • Exports outperformed expectations for most of 2021; however, shipments slowed on a decrease in overseas demand for goods, and the high costs hit exporters.
  • Imports increased by just 19.5% y/y in December, from a 31.7% y/y increase in November. 
  • The trade balance increased to $94.46bn, from $71.72bn in November.
  • The trade surplus surged to a record $676bn in 2021.
  • UK and Eurozone trade data releases are due today. 
  • SA has the 18th highest caseload, at 3.546 million; 5,920 new cases were reported yesterday.
  • Active cases are at 106,883; KwaZulu-Natal leads the way, with 32,709 active cases, followed by the Western Cape with 21,813.
  • Covid-19 deaths rose by 159 yesterday, to 92,989; 3.346 million people (or 94.4%) have recovered from the virus.
  • 21.695 million tests have been conducted since 5 March 2020; 41,438 tests were conducted yesterday; the SA positivity rate is 14.3%.
  • 28.782 million vaccines have been administered in SA to date; 86,351 vaccines were administered yesterday.
  • 15.976 million people, or 40.14% of the adult population, have been fully vaccinated.
  • Brent crude oil is down this morning, and up by 8.5% year-to-date.
  • The gold price is up this morning, and down by 0.2% year-to-date.
  • Brent crude oil is currently at $84.39/bbl; ($84.47/bbl*).
  • Gold is at $1827/oz ($1820/oz*).
  • SA CDS 199bps*, Brazil 212bps* and Turkey 543bps*.
  • Yields: US 10yr at 1.70%*, German bund at -0.090%* and SA 10-year generic at 9.84%*, SA’s R186 at 7.78%*.

* Denotes yesterday’s close.

Key events and data: 

  • 09h00: UK monthly GDP (November), manufacturing and industrial production (November), trade balance (November)
  • 12h00: Eurozone trade balance (November)
  • 15h30: US retail sales (December)
  • 16h15: US manufacturing and industrial production (December)
  • 17h00: US business inventories (November), University of Michigan sentiment index, 1 yr and 5-10 yr inflation expectations (January)

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