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Asian markets rise on China trade data, Nikkei kills weekly winning streak

Japan's Nikkei Stock Average fell again on Friday, -1.80% , putting an end to the weekly winning streak that was lasting for 12 weeks. However, most Asian equity indexes moved higher: Hong Kong's Hang Seng (+0.23%), China's Shanghai Composite (+0.51%), South Korea's Kospi (+0.99%), India's Bombai Sensitive (+0.26%) rose on Friday. Investors cheered China's trade data, with both imports (25.0% vs 17.0% consensus) and exports (28.8% vs 23.3% consensus) coming in higher than expected in January, as well as the trade surplus (29.2B vs 22.0B consensus).

Futures for the German DAX 30 (+0.32%) and the French CAC 40 (+0.40%) are signaling a higher opening ahead of Italian industrial output and French Budget figures. The German trade data is out with wider than expected surplus (€16.8B vs €14.8B consensus) and current account (€17.3B vs €17.0B consensus). December (MoM) exports (+0.3% vs +1.3% consensus) and imports (-1.3% vs -1.4% consensus) disappointed.

Germany: Trade surplus widens more than expected in December

German Trade surplus s.a. widened to €16.8 billion in December from €14.6 billion in November, according to data released today by Destatis. Analysts expected the surplus to widen only to €14.8 billion.
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Forex: GBP/USD flat above 1.5700

The sterling eased some ground on Friday, falling from session highs around 1.5740 on positive data out of China, to the current levels in the proximities of 1.5715 ...
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