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Tuesday February 28, 2006 - 11:20:03 GMT
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Forex Trading Strategies

EUR/USD in a vice grip ahead of Thursday's ECB. GBP in focus with today's UK Confidence and CBI distributive trades report. GBP/USD to test 1.7300?

First revision to US Q4 GDP report up today - large upward adjustement expected. US Consumer Confidence also on tap.

MAJOR HEADLINES – PREVIOUS SESSION
• Canada Current Account surplus for Q4 was out at +C$13.3B vs. +C$12.5B expected
• US New Home Sales for January out at 1233k vs. 1265k expected
• New Zealand Building Permits for January out at -10.8% vs. +21.0% in Dec.'
• Japan Nomura manufacturing PMI out unchanged at 57.0 in February
• Japan Industrial Production for Jan. out at +0.3% vs. +0.4% expected.
• Japan Large Retailers' Sales for Jan. out at -2.5% vs. -1.7% expected and Japan Retail Trade for Jan. out at +3.1% vs. +0.5% expected
• Japan Housing Starts out at -2.2% in Jan. vs. -3.0% expected. Construction Orders were out at -21.5% vs. +13.2% in Dec.
• Japan SMall Business Confidence for February fell slightly to 49.3 vs. the 50.0 expected
• Australia Current Account Deficit for Q4 out at -14.4B AUD vs. -13.6B expected
• Australia Jan. New Home Sales fell -0.3%
• France Jan. Unemployment Rate rose to 9.6% vs. 9.5% expected and the Unemployment Change for Jan. was out at +28k vs. -15k expected

Market Moves: JPY consolidated a bit weaker overnight and CAD remained strong, while the USD saw little action.

THEMES TO WATCH – UPCOMING SESSION
So-so data out of Japan overnight saw the JPY taking a breather, as the USD/JPY traded higher toward the most obvious resistance line at 116.50 before settling lower again. The more important data series awaits on Friday, as we mentioned yesterday. So far, the rate moves in Japan have been rather muted, so there doesn't seem to be a huge amount of anticipation built into this upcoming data.

The rate moves in European markets have been quite sharp, on the other hand, as Euribor futures are pricing in a much more aggressive ECB. Interesting to see the EUR not really moving on this. This would seem to set up a high-energy situation on Thursday with the ECB rate announcement. Strangely, the market has become even more aggressive in pricing in future tightening from the SNB, as measured over the last week of action in the STIR futures - and yet we have EUR/CHF trading at new recent highs overnight. Is this a train wreck waiting to happen on Thursday, or is there more upside to the big 7-year high at 1.5850 high?

The outperformance of CAD is a bit of a head-scratcher as there is plenty of noise out there about an overpositioned long CAD market, as well as the fact that the USD Yield Curve for the 2-10 year durations continues to rise faster than the Canadian yield curve. Combine this with another day of weak energy prices yesterday and one has a difficult time understanding that currency pair. Still, if the pair breaks to new lows, a break is a break. Perhaps the pair wants to try at that almost 30-year low down around 1.1200. The Q4 current account report yesterday was strong - but much of that strength was based on energy prices - a much smaller driver for CAD now with especially the halving of natural gas prices sure to see a much smaller surplus for Q1 of this year. The GDP report for December is up today.

GBP may be in focus today with the GfK Confidence report at 1030 GMT and the rather important CBI distributive trades report scheduled for release a half an hour later. We're bearish GBP/USD below 1.7450.

The first revision to US GDP numbers is also up today, with expectations for a fairly hefty upward adjustment to 1.6% from the original 1.1%. Also up we have the Consumer Confidence and Chicago PMI at 1500.

Note: the support/resistance levels used in the matrix’s of this document are levels derived from yesterday high, low and close. Reference in the text to other support/resistance levels will occur.

Risk warning
Saxo Bank A/S shall not be responsible for any loss arising from any investment based on any recommendation, forecast or other information herein contained. The contents of this publication should not be construed as an express or implied promise, guarantee or implication by Saxo Bank that clients will profit from the strategies herein or that losses in connection therewith can or will be limited. Trades in accordance with the recommendations in an analysis, especially leveraged investments such as foreign exchange trading and investment in derivatives, can be very speculative and may result in losses as well as profits, in particular if the conditions mentioned in the analysis do not occur as anticipated.
Please read our full Analysis Disclosure & Disclaimer at www.saxobank.com/analysis/disclaimer.

Saxo Bank
www.saxobank.com

 

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