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Tuesday December 5, 2006 - 15:15:06 GMT
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Forex: Mellon FX Daily - U.S. Edition

Key Points
• EUR-JPY correction sparks JPY strength.
• Market is starting to get cautious ahead of Thursday’s ECB meeting and this may limit EURUSD upside for now.
• More weak US data will be needed to support EURUSD - risk below 1.3280.
• BoC policy announcement also features.

Market Outlook

The USD remains fairly weak but it is the JPY that has been the main mover this morning. Talk of something big on GBP-JPY (possibly related to a gilt redemption) has been doing the rounds and with JPY shorts still prevalent, the price action has done the rest of the damage. USD-JPY looked vulnerable following the move below 115.00, while EUR-JPY was also subject to liquidations on moving below 153.50. This was the breakout point on Friday and should have been the new base.

After the move began there were comments from BoJ member Mizuno, who said that the BoJ would not necessarily have to wait until all of the data were strong before raising rates. This also helped the JPY, but currently very few pieces of data at all are showing strength and until this changes the BoJ will still face an uphill struggle selling multiple rate hikes in 2007.

Uncertainty about Thursday’s ECB meeting may be weighing on EUR sentiment a little and this may also help to cap further EUR-USD upside for the time being. Today’s US non-manufacturing ISM data may need to be week to resurrect meaningful EUR-USD upside ahead of Thursday. The main short-term support level on EUR-USD is at 1.3280-85. Below there would take the edge off it for now, leaving risk down to 1.3220-20. Resistance is at 1.3367 ahead of 1.3450-1.3500.

Data this morning showed solid PMI services numbers for the Eurozone and the UK, although last night’s UK BRC retail survey was weak. The 0.5% y/y number was the weakest since March and in line with last week’s softer than expected CBI report on sales volumes. Other anecdotal evidence also suggests that retailers are having a rough time in the run-up to Christmas. The Nov-Jan period is always an odd one for retailers and a bad start to the Christmas season can sometimes be overcome by strength later on. On this basis it is too early to pass judgement, although the initial signs sit a little awkwardly with current rate hike expectations. However, the strong PMI services number (strongest since January 2004) is an offset.

USD-CAD is holding on to 1.1375-1.1400 support ahead of today’s BoC meeting. Any strong acknowledgement of the recent softer growth phase could weigh further on the CAD. The main support for the CAD at the present time is the fact that the market is already short. Net spec CAD shorts on the IMM did fall as of last Tuesday from 58.893 contracts to 40,282 – although the latter is still a sizeable position. Upside is favoured on USD-CAD in the short-term while above 1.1375-1.1400.

Day Ahead
US – the ISM for the non-manufacturing sector will be very closely watched after the sub-50 outcome for the manufacturing version seen on Friday. Last month’s non-manufacturing ISM jumped to 57.1 from the unusually weak 52.9 seen in September and it is important that the latest reading stays above 55.00. Q3 productivity/unit labour costs and October factory orders are also due.

Canada – the BoC are likely to leave rates unchanged at today’s meeting, but the key focus will be on the statement. They meet against the backdrop of a slowing economy and how strongly they acknowledge these developments will have a direct bearing on future rate expectations and the CAD.

Data/event EDT Consensus*

US Challenger layoffs (Nov) 07.30 69.2k last
US Chain store sls (w/e Dec 2) w/w 07.45 -0.4% last
US Productivity (Q3, 2nd est) saar 08.30 +0.5%
US Unit lab costs (Q3, 2nd est) saar 08.30 +3.2%
US Redbook sls (w/e Dec 2) m/m 08.55 +0.1% last
CA BoC policy announcement 09.00 unch
US Factory orders (Oct) m/m 10.00 -3.5%
US ISM non-manu (Nov) 10.00 55.5
US ABC consumer conf (w/e Dec 3) 17.00 +1 last
AU RBA rate announcement 17.30 unch
GB N’wide cons confidence (Dec) 19.01 95
AU GDP (Q3) q/q 19.30 +0.7%
JP BoJ’s Nishimura spks 22.00

Latest data Actual Consensus*
GB BRC retail survey (Nov) y/y +0.5% +2.6% last
AU Current account (Q3) -A$12.1bn -A$11.0bn
IT PMI services (Nov) 56.2 54.0
FR PMI services (Nov) 58.8 61.2
DE PMI services (Nov) 56.8 54.5
EU PMI services (Nov) 57.6 56.5
NO GDP – total (Q3) q/q +1.3% +0.8%
NO GDP – mainland (Q3) q/q +0.9% +0.9%
GB PMI services (Nov) 59.8 58.8
EU Retail sales (Oct) m/m +0.3% +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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