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Quiet Markets: Gas Prices Fall, China Props Up Housing, US Investors Return

INVESTINGQuiet Markets: Gas Prices Fall, China Props Up Housing, US Investors Return

As is usually the case in the market, a day off in the USA causes volatility to drop. Although we do see a decrease in gas prices in the background, this is simply a continuation of a multi-week trend. In China, interest rates are falling, most likely in an attempt to save the property market.

Successive lows in gas prices

Gas price quotations dropped yesterday for the first time since June 2023 below the 24-euro barrier per megawatt-hour. We’re talking about contracts listed in the Netherlands naturally. Prices in the USA are significantly lower, but the USA is a gas exporter, while Europe has a large deficit of this commodity. Factors that favor the drop include certain easing of the world situation and another warm winter season. Considering that we are currently in the second half of February, which means we should already be at the end of the heating season, almost ⅔ of gas storage facilities being filled can be considered a very good result. If we add projections of a gas surplus worldwide in the coming years, it is easier to understand why, despite current levels being exceptionally low, many analysts say this may not be a temporary anomaly causing a quick rebound.

President’s Day in the USA

Yesterday’s day off in the USA highlighted the importance of the participation of investors from the USA. To say that Monday was not exciting on the currency markets would be an understatement. It was simply dull. The main currency pair had about a quarter of a cent in volatility, which is a really low result. Things were a bit more interesting with the Polish zloty. On the day off in the USA, some capital flowed into Poland. Interestingly, there was no corresponding move either on the Hungarian forint or on the Czech crown. While the euro rate dropped by about 1.5 pennies yesterday, the CZK or HUF rates remained almost unchanged. Today’s return of investors, however, should awaken the markets from their lethargy after the extended weekend.

China intervenes in the market

The real estate sector in China accounts for an impressive 25% of GDP. According to various data, this is about three times more than in Poland. Therefore, it is not surprising that in order to support this sector in China, the government is intervening. A cut has been made to the rate on which mortgage loans are calculated. The five-year interest rate, on which mortgages are estimated, has been reduced. However, the one-year rate has not been changed. Given the bankruptcy of the main developer, this is not a change that will reverse its fortunes, but knowing the effectiveness of the central authority, this is just one of the elements that will be used to try to stabilize the situation.

There are no important macroeconomic data readings in today’s calendar.

Maciej Przygórzewski – Chief Analyst at and

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