Slightly lower than expected inflation prints out of China overnight added to trader caution in regional markets with both the Hang Seng and the Shanghai Composite finishing Thursday's session marginally lower as a result. There's certainly no sign of panic and news like we're seeing about the Alibaba IPO being fully subscribed already underlines the confidence in China, but growth is certainly taking a different trajectory for now. The Nikkei however managed another upbeat session with the index touching 8 month highs, spurred on by yet more Yen weakness which saw USD/JPY trade briefly above the 107 level.
This waning confidence is taking a toll on US futures with the major indices both tipped to open the day a fraction lower. Economic data may be thin on the ground, although we do now seem poised for the prospect of an escalation in the geopolitical situation. Specifically the US is increasing pressure on ISIS in what has the potential to become a rather destabilising conflict in the Middle East. For now however that's one to watch as opposed to act upon and we're calling the DOW down 41 at 17028 and the S&P down 3 at 1993.