In our last lesson we learned about the capital account and how this measures flows relating to foreign investment into and out of a country. In today's lesson we are going to combine what we have learned about the current and capital accounts by looking at something which is known as the balance of payments.
As we discussed briefly in our last lesson it is the interaction of flows of money relating to international trade and investment that ultimately determines the value of a currency over the long term. When demand strengthens for the exports of a particular country and/or investments by foreigners into that country increase, then, all else being equal a currency should strengthen. Conversely, when demand weakens for the exports of a particular country and/or investment by foreigners in that country falls, then, all else being equal a currency should weaken.
It is the interaction of the current account and the capital account that measures this, and when combined these make up a country's balance of payments. The balance of payments is very simply the total transactions by a country with all other countries in the world, or in other words the combination of both trade flows and capital flows into one report. By following a country's balance of payments and its related indicators, an FX trader can gain great insight into the potential future direction of a country's currency.
To help understand this better lets look at the example of the US Dollar. As we've discussed in previous lessons, the United States has run a very large current account deficit for quite some time, meaning that the country has imported many more goods and services than it has exported. As this chart of the US Dollar Index shows however, for a number of years the US Dollar continued to strengthen, despite this large current account deficit.
As you can see here going up into 2000 although the US ran a persistent current account deficit, the currency overall continued to strengthen before starting to sell off from late 2000 forward. Now I am making some pretty significant generalizations here for simplicities sake, but there are two major reasons that fundamental traders will point to as reasons for this:
1. Although this is starting to change somewhat, there has for many years been a strong demand for US Dollars because the US Dollar is the currency of choice for many major central banks to hold as their reserve currency, with Japan and China being the countries you will hear most about in this regard. This creates a demand for dollars on the capital flows side of the equation that helped to offset the persistent current account deficit going into 2000.
2. As most of you will remember the NASDAQ top which happened in March of 2000 was preceded by a major bull market in the United States, one in which foreign investors were active participants. As we learned about in our lesson on capital flows this also created a large demand for dollars, further helping to offset the large current account deficit.
After the sell off of the NASDAQ however, foreign investors fled the US Stock market along with a lot of other traders and investors. As there was no longer as much foreign capital flowing in to offset the large current account deficit, the US Dollar began to weaken. As the dollar began to weaken this created a chain reaction with the central banks who began to diversify into the EURO and other currencies, further exacerbating the dollar's sell off.
This created a situation where the current account deficit in the United States remained large (creating a market surplus of US Dollars from an international trade standpoint) and the inflows of capital into the US stock and bond markets began to fall, lowering the demand for dollars which was offsetting the current account deficit.
While it is not important to understand all the intricate details at this point, what you do need to understand is that in order to have a feel for the long term fundamentals of a currency, it is important to have a general understanding of what is happening from both a trade flows and a capital flows standpoint, and how these two things interact with one another. As we will learn in coming lessons all fundamentals with currencies can be related back to these two basic concepts, so for your homework assignment for this lesson I encourage you to consider the following question:
As the value of the US Dollar falls what effect if any should this have on the large current account deficit in the United States and why?
If you would like to post your answer in the comments section of this lesson on InformedTrades.com for discussion this is something that I always encourage.
That's our lesson for today. In our next lesson we will look at some additional examples of how trade flows and capital flows are moving the market right now in today's market so we can have a better understanding of both and can generate some potential trading ideas as well.
Actionable trading levels delivered to YOUR charts in real-time.
Mon 10 Sep 2018 AA 08:30 GB- GDP, Trade, Output Tue 11 Sep 2018 AA 08:30 GB- Employment Decision A 09:00 DE- ZEW Survey Wed 12 Sep 2018 A 12:30 US- PPI A 14:30 US- EIA Crude A 18:00 US- Beige Book Thu 13 Sep 2018 A 1:30 AU- Employment AA 11:00 GB- Bank of England Decision AA 11:45 EZ- European Central Bank Decision A 12:30 US- Weekly Jobless AA 12:30 US- CPI Fri 14 Sep 2018 A 08:30 GB- GDP AA 12:30 US- Retail Sales A 13:15 US- Industrial Production AA 14:00 US- prelim University of Michigan
John M. Bland, MBA co-founding Partner, Global-View.com
Global-View Affiliate Program
We are starting an affiliate program to market some of our products.
Send me an email if you would be interested or if you know someone who would like to be an affiliate. Generous commissions payout for those accepted.
Put the word "affiliate" in the email subject line.
Veteran FX Trader, Max McKegg, forecasts all the Major currencies and the Australasians; providing Daily and Medium Term Trading forecasts to subscribers, who include large Banks the world over, as well as individual traders in more than 30 different countries.
looking for your first broker or do you need of a new one? There are
more critical things to consider than you might have thought.
We were trading long before there were online brokers. Global-View
has been directly involved with the industry since its infancy. We've
seen everything and are up-to-data with recent regulatory changes.
The Global-View Forex Forum is the hub for currency trading on the web. Founded in 1996, it was the original forex forum and is still the place where forex traders around the globe come 24/7 looking for currency trading ideas, breaking forex news, fx trading rumors, fx flows and more. This is where you can find a full suite of forex trading tools, including a complete fx database, forex chart points, live currency rates, and live fx charts. In addition, there is a forex brokers directory where you can compare forex brokers. There is also a forex brokers hotline where you can ask for help choosing a forex broker that meets your individual fx trading needs. Interact on the same venue to discuss forex trading.
The forex forum is where traders come to discuss the forex market. It is one of the few places where forex traders of all levels of experience, from novice to professionals, interact on the same venue to discuss forex trading. There is also the GVI Forex, which is a private subscription service where professional and experienced currency traders meet in a private forex forum. it is like a virtual forex trading room. This is open to forex traders of all levels of experience to view but only experienced currency tradingprofessionals can post.
Currency trading charts are updated daily using the forex trading ranges posted in the Global-View forex database. You will also find technical indicators on the fx trading charts, e.g. moving averages for currencies such as the EURUSD. This is another forex trading tool provided by Global-View.com.
The forex database can be used to access high, low, close daily forex ranges for key currency pairs, such as the EURUSD, USDJPY, USDCHF, GBPUSD, USDCAD, AUD, NZD and major crosses, including EURJPY, EURGBP, EURCHF, GBPJPY, GBPCHF and CHFJPY. Data for these currency trading pairs dating back to January 1, 1999 can be downloaded to an Excel spreadsheet.
Forex chart points are in a currency trading table that includes; latest fx tradinghigh-low-close range, Bollinger Bands, Fibonacci retracement levels, daily forex pivot points support and resistance levels, average daily forex range, MACD for the different currency trading pairs. You can look on the forex forum for updates when one of the fx trading tools is updated.
Global-View also offers a full fx trading chart gallery that includes fx pairs, such as the EURUSD, commodities, stocks and bonds. In a fx trading world where markets are integrated, the chart gallery is a valuable trading tool. Look for updates on the Forex Forum when the chart gallery is updated.
Global-View.com also offers a forex blog, where articles of interest for currency trading are posted throughout the day. The forex blog articles come from outside sources, including forex brokers research as well as from the professionals at Global-View.com. This forex blog includes the Daily Forex View, Market Chatter and technical forex blog updates. In additional to its real time forex forum, there are also Member Forums available for more in depth forex trading discussions.
WARNING: FOREIGN EXCHANGE TRADING AND INVESTMENT IN DERIVATIVES
CAN BE VERY SPECULATIVE AND MAY RESULT IN LOSSES AS WELL AS PROFITS. FOREIGN
EXCHANGE AND DERIVATIVES TRADING IS NOT SUITABLE FOR MANY MEMBERS OF THE
PUBLIC AND ONLY RISK CAPITAL SHOULD BE APPLIED. THE WEBSITE DOES NOT TAKE
INTO ACCOUNT SPECIAL INVESTMENT GOALS, THE FINANCIAL SITUATION OR SPECIFIC
REQUIREMENTS OF INDIVIDUAL USERS. YOU SHOULD CAREFULLY CONSIDER YOUR FINANCIAL
SITUATION AND CONSULT YOUR FINANCIAL ADVISORS AS TO THE SUITABILITY TO YOUR
SITUATION PRIOR TO MAKING ANY INVESTMENT OR ENTERING INTO ANY TRANSACTIONS.