All US major averages ended the day lower for the first time in five sessions, with risk coming off in the wake of the IMF cutting its global growth outlook and some weak data out of China. US existing home sales decelerated even more noticeably in December and earnings commentary from Black & Decker suggested the housing market weakness may last well in to 2019.
Indices – Asian markets closed slightly lower across the region (from -0.06% for Nikkei to -0.26% for ASX200). For the first time since the U.S. government shutdown the S&P 500 closed in negative territory (DOW -1.22%, S&P -1.42%, NAS -1.91%).
FX – NZD reversed earlier losses to end the day in positive territory after a stronger inflation report. As there were no Brexit developments, GBP traded higher, helped by a stronger labour market data.
Commods – Crude oil fell over 2%, (weighing on energy stocks), and copper futures had a similar percentage drop.