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Thursday November 11, 2004 - 16:09:36 GMT
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Forex Market Commentary and Analysis (11 November 2004)



The euro was little changed vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as the single currency traded in a lackluster range following yesterday’s volatile activity. Rumours abound that a Eurosystem national bank sold euros in size just above the US$ 1.3000 figure after the release of the U.S. trade data but this remains unsubstantiated. Some dollar bulls kept the pressure on the euro overnight following the Fed’s inclusion of “measured pace” in its post-meeting statement yesterday. This keeps the prospect of an additional 25bps monetary tightening at the December FOMC meeting in the forefront of traders’ minds. Italian finance minister Siniscalco made headlines yesterday when he suggested “coordinated intervention” is needed. His comments were later clarified to mean monetary authorities need to coordinate in general and not on intervention-related matters. This coincided with anonymous ECB officials who suggested a $1.35 would be tolerable as an offset to the inflationary impacts of oil but added $1.40 would be problematic. Most dealers do not think joint intervention is on the cards for several big figures and expect the pair to regain its upward trajectory after this current phase of consolidation. ECB’s Papademos sounded the recent ECB mantra in Tokyo overnight when he said excess FX volatility is “undesirable.” Data released in the eurozone today saw Q3 GDP fail to meet expectations with expansion measuring a mere 0.1% q/q. This raises the likelihood of weaker-than-expected EMU-12 GDP being released tomorrow. Liquidity will be reduced in the U.S. and Canada today on account of holidays there. Euro bids are seen around the $1.2755 level.

¥

The yen moved higher vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as the greenback tested bids around the ¥106.65 level after testing offers around the ¥107.15 level during early North American dealing. Some stops were reached below the ¥106.80 level during European dealing and these pushed the pair to an intraday low. The dollar failed to gain a lot of ground after the release of worse-than-expected September Japan machinery orders that evidenced a 1.9% m/m decline. Traders are now focusing on tonight’s release of July-September quarterly GDP in Japan. Recent Japanese economic data have been unimpressive and a surprisingly strong level of economic growth could prompt yen bulls to test the ¥105 handle again. The Nikkei 225 stock index came off 1.35% to close at ¥10,486.92 while the TOPIX fell 0.87%. Dollar bids are cited around the ¥106.30 level. The euro came off vis-à-vis the yen today as the single currency tested bids around the ¥137.55 level after failing to make ground above the ¥138.20 level. Euro bids are cited around the ¥137.40 level. In Chinese news, a National People’s Congress said China may allow the current RMB fluctuation band to expand before formally pegging the yuan against a basket of currencies. In other news, the People’s Bank of China published a new regulation regarding the management of reserves and the foreign exchange deposits of financial institutions. This new law will go into effect from 15 January 2005. Also, China’s State Administration of Foreign Exchange (SAFE) is said to have detained banking officials for conducting illegal foreign exchange trading activities.

 

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