Rail Deal, Retail Sales, Xi Meets Putin – What Moves Markets

Rail Deal, Retail Sales, Xi Meets Putin – What Moves Markets

By Jeffrey Smith – The United States is publishing its latest big dump of economic data ahead of next week’s important Federal Reserve meeting, with retail sales, jobless claims and a Philadelphia business survey due. Trade unions and rail operators reach a tentative agreement to avert a national rail strike. California is suing Amazon (NASDAQ ๐Ÿ™‚ for anti-competitive behavior toward third-party sellers and wholesalers. Adobe (NASDAQ:) earnings reports. The network completes the long-awaited “merging” – and Xi Jinping meets Vladimir Putin for the first time since the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Here’s what you need to know in the financial markets on Thursday, September 15th.

1. Unpacking data before the Federal Reserve

The US will publish August numbers, the last major piece in the economic data puzzle the Federal Reserve will have to consider when it meets next week to set interest rates.

Analysts expect the headline figure to rise 0.2% which is a modest increase in real terms, given the modest 0.1% increase in the headline during the month. It is expected to have increased by 0.1%.

Elsewhere, the Federal Reserve and the Federal Reserve are publishing their monthly manufacturing surveys, while the weekly is expected to rebound along historically low levels thanks to the high availability of new jobs for those who are laid off. Figures for August are also due at 09:15 ET (13:15 GMT).

2. Was the US rail strike averted?

Unions and rail operators have “avoided the risk of a US rail strike,” according to the Labor Department.

The agreement, if approved by union members, prevents a strike that would have had a serious impact on local supply chains that have yet to fully recover from the effects of the pandemic.

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Union Pacific (NYSE: ๐Ÿ™‚ and CSX (NASDAQ :)) stock rose more than 3% in pre-market on the news, while Southern Norfolk (NYSE ๐Ÿ™‚ is up 1.7%. Refiners, car manufacturers, coal companies and retailers are also likely to breathe a sigh of relief.

3. Set arrows to open higher; Amazon, Adobe in focus

US stock markets are expected to open slightly higher later, buoyed by news from rail negotiations.

By 06:20 EST (10:20 GMT), it was up 44 points, or 0.1%, while it was up 0.2% and it was up 0.1%. The three benchmark monetary indices rose as much as 0.7% on Wednesday thanks to a belated rally that, in hindsight, appears to have topped the news from rail negotiations.

Stocks will likely be in focus later, including Amazon, which was in California late on Wednesday due to alleged anti-competitive practices in its dealings with outside sellers and wholesalers. Also in the news is Shell Energy Group (LON:), which has appointed the head of its integrated gas business, as its new CEO. He will take over from Ben van Beurden at the end of the year.

Earnings reports after the closing bell.

4. The Ethereum Network Completes โ€œMergeโ€

The Ethereum network has completed its long-awaited and much-delayed transition to the new โ€œProof of Stakeโ€ system for verifying transactions.

The so-called “consolidation” aims to greatly reduce network power consumption, thus making it easier for the host of applications you are running on to achieve scale.

While that should be supportive in the long-term for ether, the digital currency used on the network, the short-term price action suggests that the move was fully discounted beforehand, and was not a bigger market driver than the broader range. Issues related to the willingness to take risks at the moment. Ether fell 0.9 percent to $1,590, having lost more than half its value this year.

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5. Xi-Putin meeting

Chinese President Xi Jinping will meet with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin in Samargan, Uzbekistan, on the sidelines of a regional security conference.

The two are likely to discuss the fallout from Russia’s war in Ukraine, which Putin launched just days after Monday’s announcement of a “partnership without borders” in February of this year. The meeting comes at a critical time for Putin, whose army is hastily regrouping after suffering an embarrassing defeat in eastern Ukraine last week.

Since then, China has been a critical supporter of the Russian economy, significantly increasing its purchases of Russian oil and refined products. However, while the two have a common interest in resisting what they see as American ambitions for hegemony, they have refrained from publicly providing assistance in the form of military hardware.

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