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Wednesday April 19, 2006 - 11:06:08 GMT
Mellon Bank Foreign Exchange - https://fx.mellon.com/

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Forex: Mellon FX Daily - U.S. Edition

Key Points
• Europe a little hesitant about pursuing EUR-USD upside.
• FOMC minutes open the way for more USD weakness in the short-term.
• USD downside is favoured but FOMC sentiment will remain sensitive to the data.
• US CPI features today.

Market Outlook

The USD has remained generally soft following the publication of yesterday’s FOMC minutes, which clearly add weight to the notion that US rates are close to at least an interim peak. Most members thought that an end to the Fed tightening process was near, while some were concerned about a risk of over-tightening and that the market would wrongly interpret the March statement as indicating that several tightening steps were likely to be needed. This, together with other recent signals, support our view that a 5% funds rate will be enough, although market sentiment on the matter will continue to be sensitive to developments in the data. In recent times, most activity indicators have shown moderation rather than weakness, but in combination with subdued core inflation and weakening housing market data, this could be enough for the Fed to take a break.

EUR-USD moved (yesterday) above prior resistance in the 1.2320-30 area and if this can be held today there will be risk up towards 1.2600. A new high of 1.2374 was briefly seen this morning, but the market subsequently pulled back from pushing higher. How aggressively EUR-USD can travel upwards will depend upon the data. A sudden pick-up in the strength of a variety of US releases would raise fresh doubts about 5% being a possible peak, while genuine data weakness could even raise speculation that the funds rate has peaked already. EUR-USD upside is favoured short-term, but there is clearly scope for some further twists in the story.

Other currencies are also looking good for some further short-term strength against the USD – the AUD has managed to breach the 0.7385-0.7410 area, while the USD-CAD move below 1.1425 suggests a test towards the early March low of 1.1300. USD-CHF looks set for 1.2560, while cable has scope up to 1.7935.

Day Ahead
US – CPI features in the US and while this is not the FOMC’s preferred measure of core consumer price inflation it will still nevertheless carry market moving potential, especially in the current hyper-sensitive data environment. In recent months, the core CPI y/y rate has been slipping, as has the core PCE price index measure (see chart), but the former has stayed above 2%, while the latter now stands at +1.8%.

Diary
Data/event EDT Consensus*

US CPI (Mar) m/m 08.30 +0.4%
US CPI core (Mar) m/m 08.30 +0.2%
CA Leading indicator (Mar) m/m 08.30 +0.2% last
US Fed’s Fisher on role of US in global economy 11.00
JP Trade balance (March, sa) 19.50 ¥768bn
AU RBA March Bulletin 21.30

Latest data Actual Consensus*
US ABC consumer conf (w/e Apr 16) -7 -9 last
NZ CPI (Q1) q/q +0.7% +0.7%
DE PPI (Mar) y/y +5.9% +5.7%
FR Current account (Feb) -€3.4bn -€3.2bn
NO Trade balance (Mar) NOK31.1bn NOK30.7bn
GB Bank of England minutes 7-1
* Consensus unless stated
2005, Mellon Financial Corporation Note: Although obtained from sources believed by us to be reliable, Mellon Financial Corporation and its affiliates cannot guarantee the accuracy or completeness of the information upon which this report is based. This report does not purport to disclose the risks or benefits of entering into particular transactions and should not be construed as advice in any specific instance. The views in this report constitute our judgement as of this date and are subject to change without notice.
Ian Gunner 44 20 7163 5996 06.40 EDT Monday May 31 2005

 

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