Tuesday April 19, 2005 - 10:13:37 GMT
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FOREX:US OPEN MARKET POINTS 04-19-05
Euro/Dollar- Battle of the Least Worst
“We see almost no signs of an upswing,“ noted ZEW institute’s Michael Schroeder after the survey of investors reported a woeful 20.1 versus 33.3 expected. Weighed down by high oil prices, which have cut into corporate profits and record unemployment which has depressed consumer spending for three years running, German investors were particularly pessimistic in their assessment of future economic prospects. Not surprisingly the EUR/USD lost the 1.3000 level, trading at 1.2990 in mid afternoon European session.
The price action in EUR/USD reminds of last summer when both currencies, trading in a similar narrow range battled simply not to disappoint market expectations rather than to exceed them. Although there are nascent signs that the Euro-zone may be staging a mild recovery with a recent survey of purchasing managers in the service sector indicating a pick up in business, growth is anemic at best and suggests that the euro will continue to trade much more as a troken of dollar bearish sentiment rather than on its own merits.
Turning to US, today brings the Produce Price report which is expected to jump 0.6% on month/month basis as high oil prices will likely impact producer costs. However, ex-food and energy the index is projected to register a tame 0.2% rise. If that’s the case, the data will reinforce the dollar bear’s argument that that Fed may curb its policy of continuous rate hikes. Last night Fed Governor Susan Bies suggested that policy makers need to be “more alert” in monitoring data to insure price stability but at the same time stated that inflation remained low – a comment which the market interpreted as having a dovish tone.
Perhaps, the best assessment of the present situation emanated from PIMCO’ s Paul McCulley, “The Fed ain’t gonna be hiking in 50 basis point clips. What is more, the Fed probably has only two or three more 25 basis point shots left, taking the nominal Fed funds rate into the 3%-3.5% zone, generating a real Fed funds rate in the 0.5%-1.0% zone, “ he wrote in his usual inimitable manner. We couldn’t agree more.
FX Spot Overnight
- EUR trades around 1.3000 level after a poor ZEW
- JPY firmer at 104.25 as Chinese relations improve
- GBP goes for 9100 on higher inflation data
- CHF at 1880 continuing to show strength
- 12:30 GMT – (8:30 AM EST) CAD Wholesale Sales m/m (Feb) Expected 0.5% Previous -0.2%
- 12:30 GMT – (8:30 AM EST) CAD Wholesale Inventories m/m (Feb) Expected -- Previous 1.2%
- 12:30 GMT – (8:30 AM EST) CAD Leading Indicators m/m Mar Expected 0.2% Previous 0.0%
- 12:30 GMT – (8:30 AM EST) USD Producer Price Index m/m Mar Expected 0.6% Previous 0.4%
- 12:30 GMT – (8:30 AM EST) USD PPI Ex Food & Energy m/m Mar Expected 0.2% Previous 0.1%
- 12:30 GMT – (8:30 AM EST) USD PPI Ex Food & Energy y/y Mar Expected 2.9% Previous 2.8%
- 12:30 GMT – (8:30 AM EST) USD Producer Price Index y/y Mar Expected -- Previous 4.7%
- 12:30 GMT – (8:30 AM EST) USD Housing Starts Mar Expected 2060K Previous 2195K
- 12:30 GMT – (8:30 AM EST) USD Building Permits Mar Expected 2095K Previous 2074K
- 12:30 GMT – (8:30 AM EST) USD Housing Completions Mar Expected -- Previous 1868M
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