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Friday October 15, 2004 - 09:41:10 GMT -

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Forex: US Market Points 10-15-04

Two Wrongs Don’t Make a Right

As we speculated yesterday, the awful US Trade Balance figures (-$54Bn vs. -$51Bn expected) did not push the EUR/USD much higher because the pair had already moved near the upper reaches of its trading band during the “front-running” early European session. Although US eco data is disappointing, the Euro-zone economy is not performing any better leading traders to take quick profits off any news related spike because they have no true faith in either one of the currencies. Net result of this seesaw action is that the range in the pair has contracted to a mere 200 points with support presently resting at 2250 and resistance at 2450. Today’s economic data may do nothing to change this dynamic. With euro getting no support from the poor French Trade Balance report which showed a doubling of the deficit to –€1486mn in August from -€765Mn in July, the dollar may rally if US economic releases simply meet expectations. With Retail Sales slated to rise only 0.3% ex-Autos we do not think this will be tough number to match. Ironically enough the boost may come from gasoline stations as the sharp rise in oil has finally translated to higher prices at the pump. Meanwhile oil will also be on the mind of Chairman Greenspan who is scheduled to speak on the subject at 16:00 GMT in Washington. Although many other Fed officials have made dollar bearish comments in the past few weeks, especially highlighting the negative implications of ever widening Current Account deficits, Mr. Greenspan is expected to maintain his positive tone on the US economy by stressing that the near 50% rise in oil prices is “transitory”. How long the market chooses to believe him remains to be seen.

Turning to London we find the following item reported by IFR of particular note,” In an interview to be broadcast on GMTV's Sunday Programme, former UK cabinet minister urges Gordon Brown to try to topple Tony Blair before the next general election (touted for 5 May next year), while warning that Brown's reluctance to strike is harming his prospects of becoming Prime Minister.” Although Labor is comfortably leading Torries in all the recent polls, Tony Blair is highly unpopular with the Labor rank and file for his unqualified support of invasion of Iraq. Should Gordon Brown challenge Blair for party leadership, the conflict may put the UK election in doubt and make cable trading highly volatile as players step to the sidelines until political risk is resolved. We’ll be monitoring the drama closely.

FX Spot Overnight

- EUR motionless at 2390
- JPY targeting lower 109.00s as yen strength persists
- GBP stays within 10 points of 7980 as traders await US data
- CHF tests 2430 again on large fund selling but snaps back to 2450

Upcoming Events

12:30GMT – (8:30 AM EST) USD Producer Price Index m/m (SEP) Expected 0.1% , Previous –0.1%
12:30GMT – (8:30 AM EST) USD Producer Price Index y/y (SEP) Expected 3.3% , Previous 3.4%
12:30GMT – (8:30 AM EST) USD Producer Price Index ex-Food m/m (SEP) Expected 0.2%, Previous –0.1%
12:30GMT – (8:30 AM EST) USD Producer Price Index ex-Food y/y (SEP) Expected 1.8% , Previous 1.5%
12:30GMT – (8:30 AM EST) USD Advance Retail Sales m/m (SEP) Expected 0.7% , Previous –0.3%
12:30GMT – (8:30 AM EST) USD Advance Retail Sales ex-Autos m/m (SEP) Expected 0.3% , Previous 0.2%
12:30GMT – (8:30 AM EST) USD Empire Manufacturing (OCT) Expected 25.00 , Previous 28.34
12:30GMT – (8:30 AM EST) CAD Manufacturing Shipments m/m (AUG) Expected 1.0% , Previous 0.5%
12:30GMT – (8:30 AM EST) CAD New Orders m/m (AUG) Expected –0.2% , Previous 1.4%
13:15GMT – (9:15 AM EST) USD Industrial Production (SEP) Expected 0.4% , Previous 0.1%
13:15GMT – (9:15 AM EST) USD Capacity Utilization (SEP) Expected 77.5% , Previous 77.3%
13:50GMT – (9:50 AM EST) USD U. of Michigan Confidence (OCT P) Expected 94.0 , Previous 94.2
14:00GMT – (10:00 AM EST) USD Business Inventories (AUG) Expected 0.7% , Previous 0.9%

12:30GMT – (8:30 AM EST) US Fed's Kohn Speaks on ECB Monetary Panel in Germany
16:00GMT – (12:00 PM EST) US Fed Chairman Greenspan Speaks on Oil in Washington


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