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Danske Bank analysts suggest that focus this morning will be on the market reaction to the US killing of a leading Iranian commander, which has sent oil prices higher.

Key Quotes

“In an airstrike at Bagdad airport in Iraq, the US took out the Iranian head of the elite Quds force and spearhead of Iran’s rising military influence in the Middle East. The price of Brent oil has jumped UD2½ from USD66 per barrel to USD68.5 per barrel, as the attack could risk escalating the US-Iran conflict and proxy war activities in Iraq. In a comment to the attack, Iran’s foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif called the assassination “an extremely dangerous and foolish escalation” and Iran’s Ayatollah Ali Khamanei warned of “severe retaliation”.”

“On the data front, the US ISM manufacturing index for December will be today’s highlight. The ISM index has fallen to lower levels than other US surveys and has not yet shown the signs of a recovery that we see in business surveys globally. Hence, we see some upside risk to today’s number where consensus looks for a rise from 48.1 to 49.9.”

“Tonight, the minutes from the December FOMC meeting will be released. At the meeting, the Fed sent a signal of being firmly on hold with 13 out of 17 members expecting no rate changes in 2020 while three members projected one hike.”