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The first major indicator of 2013 US  ISM Manufacturing PMI rose from last month’s 49.5 to 50.7 in  December. Expectations stood on a more modest rise to 50.2 points. The 50 points line separates between contraction and growth.

Another positive piece is the employment component: it also rose above 50, from 48.4 to 52.7 points. New orders remained unchanged and very balanced at 50.3 points. All in all, it’s an OK report. The manufacturing sector is still the weaker link in the slowly growing US economy.

EUR/USD is ticking higher and so is USD/JPY. The news about the fiscal cliff dominates the news. While another crisis awaits in February, the US averted the cliff for now.

Earlier, Markit’s manufacturing PMI came out at 54 points for December, similar to 54.2 originally reported and above expectations of a downwards revision.

Construction spending dropped by 0.3% in November, far worse than 0.6% that was expected. It’s important to note that “Sandy” could have influenced the figure.

Further reading:  Risk euphoria expected to continue – Dollar on the Backfoot