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Friday July 9, 2004 - 14:42:39 GMT
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Forex Market News and Commentary (9 July 2004)

The euro battled back from intraday losses vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today after the single currency tested bids around the US$ 1.2370 level. A sharp spike downward during European dealing saw the pair give up 40 pips in short order but the pair slowly made its way back to the $1.2395 level. Resistance was seen around the $1.2425 level overnight. Options traders cite the expiry of a $1.2400 strike at 1400 GMT today. ECB President Trichet today said the Fed had “good reasons” to hike rates and added the ECB had good reasons “to stay on hold.” He characterized the ECB’s current stance as “confident and vigilant” and added the EMU-12 economic recovery is continuing. Data released in the eurozone saw Germany’s May trade surplus at € 14.2 billion. Continued security threats in the U.S. seem to be hampering the dollar’s ability to gain any traction now, especially following the Department of Homeland Security’s latest threat of a terrorist attack during the current U.S. presidential election cycle. Traders will pay very close attention to next week’s U.S. PPI and CPI data to see if it is stronger-than-expected and if it will lead to accelerated monetary tightening by the FOMC. Euro bids are cited around the $1.2350/40 levels with stops seen below the $1.2335 level and additional demand around the $1.2315/00 levels. Euro offers are cited around the $1.2450/60/80 levels.


The yen retraced some of its weekly losses vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as the greenback fell to the ¥107.95 level during early European dealing. Dealers cited chatter that the LDP is gaining back some ground ahead of Sunday’s Upper House election. Many traders believe an LDP defeat would endanger the economic and financial reforms that have taken place on PM Koizumi’s watch. Stops were hit below the ¥108.50 level during Australasian dealing. The Nikkei 225 stock index climbed 0.89% to close at ¥11,423.53, ending a five-day losing streak. Dollar bids are cited around the ¥108.00/¥107.70 levels ahead of more demand around the ¥107.50 level. Dollar offers are seen around the ¥109.00/40 levels with talk of an option barrier around the ¥110.00 figure that is said to mature at 1400 GMT on Monday. The euro also retraced some of its weekly gains vis-à-vis the yen today as the single currency tested bids around the ¥134.05 level after failing to make headway above the ¥135.00 figure. Euro offers are now cited around the ¥134.50/70 levels and some stops are cited above the ¥135.10 level. Euro bids are seen around the ¥133.85 level. In Chinese news, China’s industrial output growth decelerated in June and is forecasted to slow further in H2 2004.


The British pound gained some ground vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today following cable’s late-day sell-off yesterday after reaching the US$ 1.8585 level. Sterling bids around the $1.8490 level kept the pair buoyed and North American dealers tested the $1.8540 level. Options traders cite a large $1.8500 option expiry at 1400 GMT today. Data released in the U.K. today saw the May global goods deficit widen to £4.62 billion from £4.59 billion in April but these data had little impact on the market. Cable stops are cited below the $1.8490 level with additional demand around the $1.8460 level. The euro came off vis-à-vis the British pound today as the single currency tested bids around the £0.6680 level after running out of steam around the £0.6700 figure. Euro offers are seen around the £0.6730 level with additional euro bids around the £0.6675/20 levels.


The Swiss franc gained a marginal amount of ground vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as the greenback tested bids around the CHF 1.2220 level after failing to absorb offers around the CHF 1.2295 level overnight. The market is currently only 50 pips lower than there it opened the week but the pair has had a difficult time with CHF 1.2375/80 during that time. Data released in Switzerland today saw Swiss headline May retail sales drop sharply but when adjusted, they evidenced a 4.5% rise. Swiss National Bank added two-week liquidity at 0.28% today, unchanged from yesterday’s repo rate level. The euro gained a small amount of ground vis-à-vis the Swiss franc today as the single currency tested offers around the CHF 1.5220 level before settling back to the CHF 1.5175 level.


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