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Monday October 9, 2006 - 11:18:26 GMT
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Forex: Mellon FX Daily - European Edition

Key Points
• JPY further undermined by North Korean nuclear test.
• 119.40 key on USD-JPY.
• EUR-USD downside risk - support at 1.2570
• UK PPI and German industrial output feature.

Market Outlook

North Korea conducting an underground nuclear test has affected Asian markets overnight, depressing the JPY and regional currencies against the USD. It is more than likely that the whole thing will blow over, but key in the next couple of days will be what sort of reaction is seen by the US and others and how North Korea itself responds to that. Essentially, the market will be looking for signs about whether or not the situation is going to escalate any further.

The JPY was already looking vulnerable against the USD after Friday’s price action and it has now made further inroads into a resistance area running from 118.90-119.40. A move above the latter would expose the 120 level. Also key for general JPY sentiment will be EUR-JPY. A break above 150.75 would introduce negative JPY momentum from this angle. The recent move in the JPY has come after a further ramp up in short positioning according to IMM data as of last Tuesday’s close – net JPY shorts rose to 104.2k from 87.4k the previous week.

Friday’s EUR-USD break below the 1.2630-50 area was potentially significant and as a consequence current downside risk has been extended. With the US likely to be thinned out a little due to the Columbus Day holiday, today could turn out to be reasonably quiet unless the 1.2570 level breaks. This would raise the risk of a test of the 1.2470-90 area. Above 1.2610 (the high since Friday’s sell-off) would alleviate some of the downside risk today, but 1.2650 needs to be won back to stabilise the situation further.

Day Ahead
UK – PPI data is due today and along with this month’s CPI and average earnings data will be a key factor determining sentiment about inflation risk and of course MPC policy prospects. If there were to be negative surprises in these key releases, some doubts could start to creep in about the likelihood of a November rate hike. Last month, the y/y rate for core output prices eased back to +2.0% from +2.4%. The market is looking for headline rates on both output and input prices to ease back following fuel price weakness in September and there is a good chance that such declines will be greater than the market expects. To this extent there could be some downside risk for GBP.

Eurozone – German industrial output can be volatile on a m/mbasis but today’s data is unlikely to disturb the picture of solid growth.

Japan – machinery orders are due tonight and the market will be keen to see what sort of bounce back there is after the very sharp 16.7% m/m decline seen last month. Before this drop the series was in a solid uptrend, but if such depressed levels are sustained this would change. Given the natural volatility in this series a strong rebound seems the most likely outcome.

Data/event EDT Consensus*

GB PPI input (Sep) m/m 09.30 -1.0%
GB PPI output (Sep) m/m 09.30 +0.1%
GB PPI output core (Sep) y/y 09.30 +2.0%
DE Ind prod (Aug) m/m 11.00 +0.3%
JP Machinery orders – core (Aug) 06.00 +11.2%

Latest data Actual Consensus*
AU ANZ job ads (Sep) m/m -0.2% -0.6% last
DE Trade balance (Aug) €11.2bn €11.7bn
DE Current account (Aug) €2.4bn €3.8bn
* 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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