The euro appreciated vis-Ă -vis the U.S. dollar today as the single currency tested offers around the US$ 1.2700
figure and was supported around the $1.2585 level.Australasian and European dealers pushed the
pair to intraday lows but the pair moved to intraday highs during the North
American session.The big news today was
a staggering 27.2% m/m decline in July existing home sales, taking the
annualized rate lower to 3.83 million.The decline was more than twice as much as expected and underscores the
fragility of the U.S. housing market.Continued
declines in housing market activity will keep the pressure on the Federal
Reserve to maintain an accommodative monetary policy.Some economists are speculating the Fed may
adopt more than US$ 1 trillion in additional quantitative easing programs in
the near future.Chicago Fed President
Evans cited the U.S. economic recovery as â€śextremely modestâ€ť and said the
economy is â€ścertainly not out of the woodsâ€ť yet.Evans also said he is â€śincreasingly uncomfortable
with the lack of noticeable improvement in the labour marketâ€ť and said he is â€śprobably
marking down my 2010 forecast.â€ť He also cautioned that the modest economic
recovery could become a â€śfaltering economyâ€ť if it were to be â€śhit by a negative
shock.â€ťSpeaking about housing, he noted
â€śJob loss and unemployment are now causing more defaults than imprudent lending.â€ťTurning to inflation, Evans acknowledged â€śinflation
is under-running my objective of 2 per cent sustainable inflation.â€ťU.S. market interest rates fell sharply after
the data with the 10-year U.S. Treasury Note now trading below 2.50% and the
30-year Treasury Bond approaching 3.50%.Other data released today saw the August Richmond Fed manufacturing
index decline to +11 from the prior reading of +16.Many data will be released tomorrow including
July durable goods and July new home sales followed by weekly initial jobless
claims data on Thursday that will be closely scrutinized after last weekâ€™s poor
result.Q2 gross domestic product data
will be released on Friday along with University of Michigan consumer sentiment
data.In eurozone news, data released today saw EMU-16 June industrial
new orders up 1.5% m/m and 24.0% y/y.German
final Q2 gross domestic product growth came in at 2.2% q/q and 3.7% y/y with
exports upwardly revised.August Ifo data
will be released tomorrow in German along with French employment numbers.European Union Commissioner for Economic and
Monetary Affairs Rehn warned that slower economic growth in China, India, and
other Asian economies will have a â€śserious negative impactâ€ť on European
growth.Euro offers are cited
around the US$ 1.3240 level.
The yen appreciated
vis-Ă -vis the U.S. dollar today as the greenback tested bids around the ÂĄ83.60
level and was capped around the ÂĄ85.20 level. The pair reached its lowest level since May
1995 on deteriorating global growth prospects and the euro reached its weakest
level since 2001.Prime Minister Kan
verbally intervened to arrest the yenâ€™s ascent, indicating â€śsteep currency
gains are undesirable.â€ťMany traders
believe the yen will continue to march higher and eventually dollar bears may
test the psychologically-important ÂĄ80 figure.Nikkei reported Bank of Japan may expand monetary policy further
and may accelerate its planned 6-7 Policy Board meeting.Dealers are still pondering the likelihood of
yen-selling intervention by Japanese monetary authorities.There is no consensus that Japan would obtain
assistance from other global monetary authorities and any unilateral
intervention would likely be very costly with little guarantee of success.A breach of the ÂĄ80 figure would most likely
increase the likelihood of yen-selling intervention.News that BoJ Governor Shirakawa and Kan
spoke yesterday without discussing intervention gave yen bulls the catalyst
they needed to push the pair to multi-year lows.Finance minister Noda verbally intervened
again, saying â€śRecent movements have clearly been one-sided.As Iâ€™ve said before, excessive and disorderly
movements in the currency market can have a negative impact on the stability of
the economy.â€ťData to be released in
Japan overnight include the July corporate service price index and July trade
balance.The Nikkei 225 stock index lost
1.33% to close at ÂĄ8,995.14.U.S. dollar
bids are cited around the ÂĄ84.60 level.The euro
moved lower vis-Ă -vis the yen as the single currency tested bids around the
ÂĄ105.40 level and was capped around the ÂĄ107.80 level.The
British pound moved lower vis-Ă -vis the yen as sterling tested bids around
the ÂĄ128.75 level while the Swiss franc moved
lower vis-Ă -vis the yen and tested bids around the ÂĄ80.30 level. In Chinese news, the U.S. dollar depreciated
vis-Ă -vis the Chinese yuan as the greenback closed at CNY 6.7969 in the
over-the-counter market, down from CNY 6.8000. The
July leading index will be released in China overnight.Some Western banks including Citigroup have
indicated they will seek a bond license in China.
British pound depreciated vis-Ă -vis the U.S. dollar today as cable tested bids
around the US$ 1.5370 level and was capped around the US$ 1.5515 level. Bank of England Monetary Policy Committee
member Weale warned the U.K. economy faces a â€śsignificantâ€ť risk of falling into
a double-dip recession.Mortgage lending
has tumbled 18.5% in the U.K. over the past year yet inflation remains
significantly elevated and may require official higher rates from the central
bank.Data released in the U.K. saw July
BBA loans for house purchases decline.Cable
bids are cited around the US$ 1.5385 level.The euro appreciated
vis-Ă -vis the British pound as the single currency tested offers around the
ÂŁ0.8215 level and was supported around the ÂŁ0.8150 level.
franc appreciated vis-Ă -vis the U.S. dollar today as the greenback tested bids
around the CHF 1.0320 level and was capped around the CHF 1.0450 level. Notably, the franc reached its strongest level
ever vis-Ă -vis the euro and this will increase the pressure on Swiss National
Bank to conduct additional franc-selling intervention.Data released in Switzerland yesterday saw
July M3 money supply growth decelerate to +6.5% y/y from the revised June
reading of +7.4% y/y.Data to be
released on Thursday include Q2 employment and data to be released on Friday
include the August KOF Swiss leading indicator.Swiss National Bank Chairman Hildebrand defended the central bankâ€™s
franc-selling intervention, speculating without the massive intervention
unemployment may have reached 8%.SNBâ€™s
foreign reserves totaled CHF 219.3 billion last month, far above the CHF 95
billion level reported at the end of 2009.U.S. dollar offers are cited around the CHF 1.0980 level.The
euro depreciated vis-Ă -vis the Swiss franc as the single currency tested bids
around the CHF 1.3080 level while the
British pound moved lower vis-Ă -vis the Swiss franc and tested bids around
the CHF 1.5935 level.
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