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Friday October 9, 2009 - 19:47:14 GMT
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Forex Market Commentary and Analysis (9 October 2009)

The euro depreciated vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as the single currency tested bids around the US$ 1.4675 level and was capped around the $1.4795 level.  The common currency pared some intraweek gains following a significant round of intervention from Asian central banks overnight in which the U.S. dollar was lifted higher.  Federal Reserve Chairman Bernanke was on the wire overnight saying interest rates will need to eventually move higher but most Fed-watchers believe the Fed will keep rates unchanged for several months.  Data released in the U.S. today saw the August trade balance print at –US$ 30.71 billion, lower-than-expected and down from a revised –US$ 31.85 billion.  This represented the first time the trade deficit has narrowed in four months.  St. Louis Federal Reserve President Bullard reported he does not see many alternatives to the U.S. dollar.  Speaking about interest rates, Bullard said the Fed’s stimulus programs are creating “medium-term” inflation risks.  The March fed funds futures contract is now indicating traders expect rates will rise to 0.33% by then from the current range of 0% to 0.25%.  One week ago, the March contract indicated no rate hike by then.  Fed Governor Kohn reported it is important for the Fed to communicate its rate policy to the markets.  In eurozone news, Germany’s merchandise trade surplus and current account surplus fell unexpectedly in August with the trade surplus lower at €8.1 billion. Also, German final September consumer price inflation was off 0.4% m/m and 0.3% y/y. European Central Bank President Trichet spoke today and said the central bank will “need to phase out these measures once the rationale for their adoption fades away and the situation normalizes.”  He also added the ECB has not changed its view of the economy in the most recent month and predicted the eurozone may have “slightly positive” eurozone growth in 2010.  Euro bids are cited around the US$ 1.4445 level.

¥/ CNY

The yen depreciated vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as the greenback tested offers around the ¥89.85 level and was supported around the ¥88.35 level. The pair moved higher following a significant round of intervention from Asian central banks during the Australasian session.  Japanese monetary authorities are not believed to have intervened overnight but other countries are said to have sold their local currencies and bought U.S. dollars en masse.  Data released in Japan overnight saw August core machinery orders up 0.5% m/m.  Finance minister Fujii reported it is Bank of Japan to determine when to wind down its corporate debt purchasing program.  Deputy Prime Minister called on the BoJ to keep their programs intact, noting “Funding conditions for small companies are still very severe.  I hope they won’t take action that contradicts that.”  Fujii reiterated the U.S.’s “easy” monetary policy is the cause for the dollar’s weakness now and added the U.S. wants a strong dollar.  The Nikkei 225 stock index climbed 1.87% to close at ¥10,016.39.  U.S. dollar offers are cited around the ¥94.75 level.  The euro moved higher vis-à-vis the yen as the single currency tested bids around the ¥132.20 level and was supported around the ¥130.65 level.  The British pound moved higher vis-à-vis the yen as sterling tested offers around the ¥143.10 level while the Swiss franc moved higher vis-à-vis the yen and tested offers around the ¥87.05 level. In Chinese news, the U.S. dollar weakened vis-à-vis the Chinese yuan as the greenback closed at CNY 6.8211 in the over-the-counter market, down from CNY 6.8220.  Chinese officials have recently indicated they will stimulate domestic final private demand to reduce China’s dependence on foreign trade.

The British pound depreciated sharply vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as cable tested bids around the US$ 1.5825 level and was capped around the $1.6075 level.  Data released in the U.K. today saw September factory gate prices increase more than expected, up 0.5% m/m and 0.4% y/y. Also, the August trade deficit narrowed to its lowest level since June 2006, printing at ₤6.2 billion.  September input PPI was off 0.5% m/m and 6.5% y/y. As expected, Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee yesterday kept its main Bank Rate unchanged at 0.5% and maintained its program to purchase ₤175 billion in government bonds.  Cable bids are cited around the US$ 1.5720 level.  The euro moved lower vis-à-vis the British pound as the single currency tested offers around the ₤0.9290 level and was supported around the ₤0.9180 level.

CHF

The Swiss franc weakened vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as the greenback tested offers around the CHF 1.0350 level and was supported around the CHF 1.0255 level.  Swiss National Bank member Hildebrand yesterday said international banking regulators need to coordinate their plans to wind down problem banks.  It was reported this week that Swiss unemployment climbed to its highest level in more than eleven years, printing at 4.1% in September from 4.0% in August.  U.S. dollar offers are cited around the CHF 1.0527 level.  The euro climbed higher vis-à-vis the Swiss franc as the single currency tested offers around the CHF 1.5195 level while the British pound came off vis-à-vis the Swiss franc and tested bids around the CHF 1.6335 level.

 

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