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Monday September 18, 2006 - 10:33:01 GMT
Mellon Bank Foreign Exchange -

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Forex: Mellon FX Daily - U.S. Edition

Key Points
• EUR-JPY constrained by European/Japanese comments, but USD-JPY breaks through 118.00.
• Paulson comment helps USD.
• Change of government in Sweden boosts SEK.
• EUR-CHF should be well supported – upside risk still in place.
• US BoP, TIC data and NAHB housing index due.

Market Outlook

The key development at G8 was the joint (albeit moderate) effort made by Europe and Japan to talk down EUR-JPY. However, the early Asian market mark-down in EUR-JPY to 148.00 was not sustained and USD-JPY broke through 118.00 in Europe this morning. Paulson stating that a strong USD was “clearly” in the US interest helped the USD in Europe.

With Japan away on holiday it is fair to say that the full market reaction to the weekend news will probably not be seen until tomorrow. Sceptics will continue to point to the wide rate differential as a reason why it will be difficult to turn around the overall trend against the JPY. Nevertheless, with positioning on EUR-JPY still extended and the key short-term resistance area at 149.70-150.00 intact, there is some scope on the downside from a very short-term perspective. If support at 147.60-148.00 breaks there would be risk towards 146.00. However, a sustained JPY recovery will require some better news on rates/economy. Any move above 150.00 would be a sign that the market wants to extend JPY weakness further.

Of course, if USD-JPY can build upon this morning’s move – risk up to 118.95 while above 118.00 – EUR-JPY weakness would also mean a lower EUR-USD. EUR-USD is just about hanging on after Friday’s weakness, although downside risk remains until it can get back above 1.2740-50. Since the sell-off mthe previous Friday, which took it below the 100-day MA, the latter has now turned into resistance. EUR-USD has yet to secure a close back above the 100-day MA (1.2737) and such a development is needed to switch the short-term bias back to the upside.

EUR-CHF has given up a fair chunk of the gains secured after Thursday’s SNB meeting. However, the reasons for the move are still in place and risk will remain to the upside as long as it stays above 1.5830 (1.5875-80 is initial support). There is scope up into the 1.60-1.6185 area, although 1.60 could be a short-term barrier.

In Sweden the centre-right won the election and the change in government will mean the adoption of policies aimed at deregulation and tax cuts. This should be positive for the SEK from a number of angles. To the extent that lower taxes should mean stronger growth, it likely to advance the case for higher interest rates in general, while more liberal policies could also boost the prospect of FDI inflows into the SEK. 9.13-9.16 is the key support area on EUR-SEK and while it could prove to be a short-term sticking point it is favoured to break at some point in the next month or so.

Day Ahead
US – balance of payments and TIC portfolio numbers are both released today although the market has become less sensitive to these reports in 2006. Some unusual numbers will be needed to affect USD sentiment. The NAHB index (a combination of measures relating to current and expected sales and the number of prospective buyer inquiries) is also due and last month this fell to its lowest level for over 15 years (see chart).

Data/event EDT Consensus*

JP Market Holiday
US Current account (Q2) 08.30 -$213bn
US Balance of payments (Q2) 08.30
CA Net portfolio balance (Jul) 08.30 -C$3.6bn last
US TIC intl portfolio balance (Jul) 09.00 +$70.0bn
EU ECB’s Tumpel-Gugerell on econ 09.00
US NAHB housing index (Sep) 13.00 31

Latest data Actual Consensus*
GB Rightmove house prices (Sep) y/y +9.8% +9.0% last
EU Ind prod (Jul) m/m -0.4% +0.2%
* 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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