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Wednesday May 2, 2007 - 10:38:59 GMT
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Forex Research - Mellon FX Daily - U.S. Edition

Mellon FX Daily 06:15 EDT

Key Points
Key Points
• Yesterday’s strong ISM number has shifted the near-term USD bias to the upside.
• Weak US data during the rest of this week will be required to support current short USD positioning.
• 1.3540 and 1.3460-1.3500 are key supports on EURUSD.
• US ADP employment and factory orders due today.

Market Outlook

Yesterday’s surprisingly strong ISM manufacturing number has thrown some doubt over the bearish US economy story and in this regard is a clear danger to current short USD positioning. Could the ISM strength be a one-off? It is possible, but until this is confirmed one has to take the data at face value. The other main release of yesterday was the much weaker than expected pending home sales number, which does not bode well for existing home sales in coming months and suggests that things are still not right in the housing market. On this basis, any optimism about the US will remain cautious. The market will wait to see what the rest of this week’s data brings – non-manufacturing ISM tomorrow and the employment report on Friday – but as things currently stand there is now a considerable degree of corrective upside risk on the USD. Some weak numbers during the rest of the week will be required to counter this bias.

1.3540 should be tested today on EUR-USD and if this breaks the main short-term support area at 1.3460-1.3500 would be exposed. USD-JPY would also carry upside risk if 120.20 breaks. While GBP sentiment should be supported to a certain degree by the prospect of the events over the next couple of weeks (MPC meeting and Inflation Report), corrective risk is also in place for cable, especially with so much already discounted in the UK money market. Further downside risk would develop on any break below Friday’s low of 1.9865. UK mortgage approvals (seasonally adjusted for all lenders) fell further this morning to a weaker than expected 111k, but market impact was limited. The data does suggest some response to the higher interest rates currently in place but will need to fall below 100k-110k to suggest genuine weakness (see chart).

The stronger USD is putting pressure on positioning elsewhere, with previous high-yielding favourites like the NZD and the AUD falling back. There is downside risk on the AUD to 0.8150 during this move and it could easily extend to 0.8050 if pronounced USD strength is seen elsewhere. The NZD has risk down to 0.7260. The high-yield attributes for both these currencies remain firmly intact, but short-term movement is all about position adjustment in response to better news about the US.

The Swedish government announced this morning that they would be selling 8% of their 45.3% stake in TeliaSonera today and tomorrow (roughly SEK19-20bln). The sale is the first in what should be an ongoing privatisation process in coming years, with the government having previously stated that it had highlighted SEK150bn of opportunities. The process is a positive one for the SEK given that foreign investor interest is being encouraged. EUR-SEK dipped on the news, but bounced back following a weaker than expected Swedish PMI number, with the market still in the dark about what Friday’s Riksbank repo announcement will bring. A rate hike could easily be justified in such circumstances (and on balance seems the more likely outcome), but it would also represent an admission on the part of the Riksbank that they (unintentionally) misled the market back in February. 9.1850 is resistance on EUR-SEK – support at 9.1000-9.1250. Downside favoured, but the Riksbank outcome will be crucial.

Day Ahead
US – second line labour market measures such as ADP employment and the Challenger survey of job cut announcements are due today. The ADP measure has not had the best of records in predicting payrolls in recent months and should really be ignored, but any unusual numbers (especially on the upside) may generate some market impact. Factory orders are also due and may reveal some further revisions to the already released (and strong) durable orders numbers.

Data/event EDT Consensus*

US Mortgage apps – purchases w/w 07.00 +3.7% last
US Challenger layoffs (Apr) y/y 07.30 -24.6% last
US ADP employment (Apr) m/m 08.15 +105k
US Factory orders (Mar) m/m 10.00 +2.0%
JP Market Holiday (tomorrow)

Latest data Actual Consensus*
US ABC consumer conf (w/e Apr 29) -5 -7 last
AU RBA rate announcement unch unch
JP Monetary base (Apr) y/y -12.2% -12.2%
SE PMI manu (Apr) 58.5 62.0
CH PMI manu (Apr) 61.9 63.5
IT PMI manu (Apr) 53.9 53.9
NO PMI manu (Apr) 63.3 62.6
FR PMI manu (Apr) 53.9 54.3
DE Unemployment (Apr) -9k -40k
DE Employment (Mar) +52k +46kR last
DE PMI manu (Apr) 57.0 57.3
EU PMI manu (Apr) 55.4 55.7
NO Retail sales (Mar) m/m +1.3% +0.3%
GB Consumer credit (Mar) +£0.9bn +£0.9bn
GB Net lending secured on dwellings (Mar) £9.9bn +£10.0bn
GB Mortgage approvals (Mar, sa) 111k 117k
EU Unemployment rate (Mar) 7.2% 7.2%
* 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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