Markets continued their impressive run in April to the point where most have now recovered all losses sustained in the correction late last year. Equity returns across the globe were fairly consistent with the US up 2.7% led by gains in heavyweight names such as Amazon 8.2%, Microsoft 10.7% and Facebook 16%.
The Eurozone improved 3.8% driven largely by Germany up 5.6%, as the manufacturing power house showed signs of life, while the UK was up just 1.9% still languishing in the mire of Brexit uncertainty.
Across Asia, Japan led the way up 5% while China fell 1.5% following its recent strong performance. In Australia, the market advanced a respectable 2.3%, pushed higher by IT and consumer stocks while weakness in the big miners BHP and RIO dampened the overall market.
The benign March quarter CPI saw market pundits sharply revise their interest rate expectations which fueled a 10 basis point rally in 10 year bonds and a 1 cent decline in the $A against the $US.
Commodity markets were a mixed bag with base metals weaker across the board, however, supply disruptions saw the oil price up 7% and iron ore 9% firmer.