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Tuesday May 8, 2007 - 10:28:29 GMT
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Forex Research - Mellon FX Daily - U.S. Edition

Mellon FX Daily 05:35 EDT

Key Points
• Market wary ahead of CB meetings, but upside corrective risk remains in place for the USD after the better US data news of last week.
• AUD helped by strong retail sales number.
• Quiet data schedule today – German manufacturing, UK BRC retail sales.

Market Outlook

The USD has steadied a touch in Europe this morning, although the market remains a little wary of this week’s central bank meetings. The UK is expected to raise rates and the ECB is likely to signal a June rate rise, while the Fed is set to leave its policy message unchanged. However, while there is clearly a sense that this week’s meetings will embody the current cyclical trends for each currency, there is unlikely to be any real news in such developments. USD upside remains more likely in the short-term.

The market is toying with the idea that the MPC could hike by 50bp and while this ‘cold shower’ remedy does carry some attractions (in terms of possibly reducing the need for further moves) it would be seen as a panic response to the recent CPI overshoot. It would also be slightly inconsistent with the message from the MPC since the CPI data, that they expect CPI to fall back over coming months. The ECB meeting is likely to deliver what the market expects and no more, while the FOMC statement is unlikely to encourage rate cut expectations any further, especially in light of last week’s higher ISMs.

Overall, there is a risk of some further USD downside testing until these events are out of the way, although it should be minor and it is questionable whether there is enough momentum in place to push the USD much lower without some prior corrective activity. Friday’s employment report was slightly disappointing but the more important developments last week were the ISM surveys. If the ISMs slump back again next month, this will clearly be seen as a false start, but for now one has to take them at face value and they do offer a glimmer of hope for a stabilisation in US cyclical conditions. In sum, a stronger USD remains favoured over the next week or so, with 1.3460-1.3500 likely to be tested on EUR-USD.

The AUD has strengthened overnight, helped by a much better than expected retail sales number. The data lends support to the idea that further RBA tightening could be seen over coming months. However, resistance at 0.8330-50 will be tough to break in the short-term and the corrective USD tone should also mean downside risk for the AUD initially.

Day Ahead
Eurozone – German manufacturing output data is due today and there is some element of downside risk related to seasonal factors. The unusually mild European winter probably helped the output numbers in the winter months, which in turn will mean the absence of the usual rebound as spring arrives, but if this does materialise it will do little to undermine perceptions about the overall trend, which is well established (see chart).

UK – the April BRC retail sales survey is released this evening and is likely to be strong given the warm weather boost that was seen for April in the data reported by the CBI.

Data/event EDT Consensus*

EU Ecofin meeting
DE Ind prod (Mar) m/m 06.00 0.0%
US Chain store sls (w/e May 5) w/w 07.45 +0.5% last
CA Housing starts (Apr) 08.15 215k
US Redbook sls (w/e May 5) m/m 08.55 -4.1% last
US ABC consumer conf (w/e May 6) 17.00 -5 last
GB BRC retail survey (Apr) y/y 19.01 +3.9% last
AU House prices (Q1) q/q 21.30 +1.2%

Latest data Actual Consensus*
NZ Labour costs – total (Q1) q/q +0.6% +0.8%
AU ANZ job ads (Apr) m/m +3.5% +1.9% last
CH Unemployment rate (Apr, sa) 2.9% 2.8%
DE Manu orders (Mar) m/m +2.4% -0.6%
CA Building permits (Mar) m/m +27.4% -23.3%R last
US Consumer credit (Mar) +$13.5bn +$4.0bn
AU Retail trade (Mar) m/m +1.1% +0.5%
AU Building approvals (Mar) m/m -11.4% -5.0%
NO Manu output (Mar) m/m +0.9% +0.3%
* Consensus unless stated, Italicised entries are Monday releases

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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