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Monday June 4, 2007 - 16:56:10 GMT
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Forex and Commodity Market Commentary and Analysis (4 June 2007)

The euro gained ground vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as the single currency tested offers around the US$ 1.3500 figure and was supported around the $1.3415 level. Technically, today’s intraday high was right around the 38.2% retracement of the move from $1.3680 to $1.3390. Traders are paying close attention to the Group of Eight summit beginning this week in Germany with Italian sources indicating exchange rates will be in the group’s communiqué. Data released in the eurozone today saw EMU-13 April producer price inflation up 0.4% m/m and 2.4% y/y, leading to expectations of higher interest rates in the eurozone. Most traders believe the European Central Bank will tighten monetary policy by +25bps to 4.00% on Wednesday and some believe rates could reach 4.25% by September. ECB President Trichet reiterated there is no room for complacency earlier today. The Financial Times Deutschland reported the ECB has upwardly revised its 2007 forecasts for eurozone growth and inflation. The current forecasts call for 2007 inflation and growth around 1.8% and 2.5%, respectively. Spanish finance minister Solbes today said “strong volatility is not a very good situation” ahead of the Ecofin meeting of European Union finance ministers. In U.S. news, April factory orders were up a weaker-than-expected 0.3% with the ex-transportation component up 0.7%. Traders await comments from Federal Reserve Chairman Bernanke this week. Euro bids are cited around the US$ 1.3415 level.

¥/ CNY

The yen appreciated vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as the greenback tested bids around the ¥121.55 level and was capped around the ¥122.10 level. Technically, today’s intraday low was right around the 23.6% retracement of the move from ¥119.45 to ¥122.15. Data released in Japan overnight saw Q1 non-financial firms’ capital investments up 13.6% y/y, the sixteenth consecutive quarter of expansion. Also, the May monetary base was off 5.7% y/y, down for the fifteenth consecutive month. The Nikkei 225 stock index gained 0.08% to close at ¥17,973.42. Dollar bids are cited around the ¥121.10/ 120.80 levels. The euro gained marginal ground vis-à-vis the yen as the single currency tested offers around the ¥164.35 level and was supported around the ¥163.85 level. The British pound and Swiss franc moved higher vis-à-vis the yen as the crosses tested offers around the ¥242.45 and ¥99.55 levels, respectively. The Chinese yuan came off vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar as the greenback closed at CNY 7.6512 in the over-the-counter market, up from CNY 7.6473. People’s Bank of China Deputy Governor Wu was quoted as saying the proportion of euro-denominated assets in China’s foreign exchange reserves will increase, though not necessarily at the expense of the U.S. dollar. PBOC’s foreign reserves exceed US$ 1.2 trillion. The Shanghai Composite Stock Index lost another 8.3% overnight but this has not materialized into an intraday global equity rout.

The British pound appreciated vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as cable tested offers around the US$ 1.9925 level and was supported around the $1.9810 level. Technically, today’s intraday high is right around the 38.2% retracement of the move from $1.9590 to $2.0130. Most traders believe Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee will keep the repo rate unchanged at 5.50% on Thursday. Some traders believe the BoE could move rates higher by another +25bps by August while others believe evidence is emerging that inflation is moving lower and this may reduce interest rate expectations in the U.K. Data released in the U.K. today saw May construction sector PMI recede to 58.0 while input prices were at a nine-month high. Cable bids are cited around the US$ 1.9840 level. The euro moved lower vis-à-vis the British pound as the single currency tested bids around the ₤0.6770 level and was capped around the ₤0.6785 level.


The Swiss franc appreciated vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as the greenback tested bids around the CHF 1.2215 level and was capped around the CHF 1.2305 level. Technically, today’s intraday low was right around the 38.2% retracement of the move from CHF 1.2570 to CHF 1.1995. Swiss National Bank President Roth said the franc’s current weakness will likely be “only of a passing nature” and added the franc has “all elements of being healthy and stable” with an economy that is “growing strongly with low inflation.” Roth said the SNB “makes decision on interest rates that have a preventive effect.” Dollar offers are cited around the CHF 1.2280 level. The euro and British pound weakened vis-à-vis the Swiss frnac as the crosses tested bids around the CHF 1.6480 and CHF 2.4310 levels, respectively.


The Australian dollar gained ground vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as the Aussie tested offers around the US$ 0.8340 level and was supported around the $0.8310 level. The pair reached its highest level since 15 May. Data released in Australia today saw Q1 company profits up 7.6% q/q and 17.1% y/y while ANZ May job ads were up 10.3% m/m and 40.8% y/y. Also, Dun & Bradstreet reported business confidence has improved ahead of the new fiscal year that begins 1 July. Traders await this week’s interest rate decisions from Reserve Bank of Australia and Reserve Bank of New Zealand. Australian dollar bids are cited around the US$ 0.8220 level.


The Canadian dollar weakened vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as the greenback tested bids around the C$ 1.0550 level and was capped around the $1.0620 level. Today’s intraday low represents another fresh multi-decade low for the pair. Many economic data will be released on Wednesday and Friday. U.S. dollar offers are cited around the C$ 1.0695 level.

Gold/ Silver

Gold gained ground vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as the yellow metal tested offers around the US$ 673.75 level and was supported around the $668.50 level. Traders shrugged off the steep decline in Chinese equity markets overnight. Silver moved higher vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar as the pair tested offers around the US$ 13.80 level and was supported around the $13.62 level.

Crude Oil

Crude oil appreciated vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as light, sweet NYMEX crude oil futures for July delivery tested offers around the US$ 66.47 level and were supported around the $64.59 level. The official start of the U.S. hurricane season saw a couple of tropical storms named and traders are also keeping an eye on a development in the Indian Ocean. Traders are pushing energy prices higher on concerns U.S. refineries are not producing enough gasoline. Traders are also eyeing developments in Nigeria where militants have offered a cessation in militant activities until the end of June.


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