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Friday July 8, 2005 - 14:22:58 GMT
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Forex Market Commentary and Analysis (8 July 2005)

The euro battled back vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today after the release of June U.S. non-farm payrolls data that saw the single currency gap around 30 pips higher. The common currency traded as high as the US$ 1.1955 level today and remained supported around the $1.1870 level. The euro is currently trading around the level where it began the week and may actually post a rare winning week. Today’s June non-farm payrolls number saw +146,000 additional payrolls created last month, around 50,000 less than consensus forecasts. Notably, however, the unemployment rate came in at 5.0%, a multi-year low and average earnings printed at +0.2%. Importantly, there were upward revisions to May’s and April’s non-farm payroll tallies of +26,000 and +18,000, respectively. The U.S. dollar sold off on this news because it failed to meet consensus but comparatively, the U.S. economy continues to create jobs and add to payrolls while many major industrialized countries are failing to do so. The communiqué from the Group of Eight leaders convening in Gleneagles was released and it cited “persistent global imbalanced and high and volatile oil prices.” The G8 called for “continued fiscal consolidation to increase national saving in the U.S.” and “structural reforms” in both the European Union and Japan. French President Chirac yesterday indicated that the G8 discussed exchange rates and added they are “a problem for us all” but the communiqué made no mention of currencies. In eurozone news, Germany’s May trade surplus printed at €12.0 billion, off from April’s €12.7 pace, while industrial output declined 0.2% m/m in May. In the news conference following the European Central Bank’s interest rate deliberations yesterday, President Trichet indicated the central bank is “not signaling any plans for a change in rates.” Options traders cite an option barrier around the $1.1850 level. Euro offers are seen around the $1.1980/ $1.2050 levels.


The yen retraced most of its intraday losses vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as the greenback tested offers around the ¥112.60 level and remained supported around the ¥111.95 level. Before retracing its intraday gains, the dollar traded at its highest level since May 2004. Data released in Japan overnight saw May household spending off 2.0% y/y and up 0.8% m/m, the latest indication that final private demand continues to languish on an annualized basis. Other data saw May core private-sector machinery orders decline 6.7% m/m while June bank lending was off 2.6% y/y, the 90th consecutive decline. Corporate demand for financing from financial institutions remains quite weak. Also, the economy watchers’ index improved last month for the sixth consecutive month. The Nikkei 225 stock index lost 0.21% to close at ¥11,565.99. Options traders cite offers around the ¥112.70 level ahead of a reported ¥113.00 option barrier. Dollar bids are seen around the ¥111.70 level. The euro came off vis-à-vis the yen as the single currency tested bids around the ¥133.60 level and remained capped around the ¥134.15 level. Stops are seen below the ¥133.40 level and euro bids are cited around the ¥132.90 level. In Chinese news, a Chinese researched released a report forecasting H1 GDP growth of 9% to 9.4%. It was also announced that China established an asset management company to handle the non-performing loans of People’s Bank of China. Deutsche Bank is predicting China will reform its yuan currency this year but not change interest rates.

The British pound climbed higher from fresh multi-month lows vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as cable tested bids around the $1.7310 level and moved higher to above the $1.7400 figure. Technically, the $1.7290 level remains a key support level for the pair and the bids that materialized ahead of the $1.7300 figure were said to be in defense of an option barrier at the figure. Traders remain on edge following yesterday’s horrific terrorist attacks in the U.K. that have left more than 50 people dead. Many market participants believe Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee could ease rates as soon as their August rate meeting. The MPC did not change policy in yesterday’s meeting but recent economic data in the U.K. may support an expansionary policy move. London is very much on edge today and the prospect of additional terror attacks there could be unsettling for the pound. Data to be released next week in the U.K. include input and output prices, retail price inflation, headline earnings, and unemployment data. Cable offers are seen around the $1.7535/ $1.7680 levels. The euro moved higher vis-à-vis the British pound as the single currency tested offers around the ₤0.6870 level and remained supported around the ₤0.6840 level.


The Swiss franc gained ground vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as the greenback tested bids around the CHF 1.2960 level and remained capped around the CHF 1.3075 level. Today’s high technically represented a new multi-month high dating to May 2004. Some dealers cited continued safe-haven buying of the Swiss franc following yesterday’s devastating terrorist attacks in the U.K. Dollar bids are seen around the CHF 1.2895 level. The euro moved higher vis-à-vis the Swiss franc as the single currency tested offers around the CHF 1.5535 level while the British pound crumbled further vis-à-vis the Swiss franc and tested bids around the CHF 2.2585 level.


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