Some good news came out of Europe as new car registrations rose 63% in March, the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association said on Friday. The gains erased an early-year decline to leave sales up 0.9% for the quarter. The 1.39 million vehicles registered was the highest since June 2019.
Earlier in the session, Chinese industrial production deteriorated notably in March, printing 14.% year-on-year, down from 35.1% in February. The huge deviation is most likely because the 2020 base in February was much lower due to China's first lockdown in February 2020, while the situation slowly improved in the following month.
However, the first quarter's GDP came out at 18.3%, up from 6.5% in the last quarter of 2020. Additionally, Chinese retail sales improved further, from 33.8% to 34.2% in March. All numbers are year-on-year comparisons.
Later in the day, traders will pay attention to the EU CPI data, which are expected to show inflation in the euro bloc is still tepid (for whatever reason, the trust in official data is shallow anyway), and US building permits + housing starts will be released in the afternoon.
US yields plunged yesterday, and the 10-year yield dropped below 1.6%, which undermined the greenback and bolstered precious metals. Gold rose to 1,760 USD, and silver was seen slightly below 26 USD today.