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Monday July 2, 2007 - 16:18:39 GMT
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Forex and Commodity Market Commentary and Analysis (2 July 2007)

The euro darted higher vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as the single currency tested offers around the US$ 1.3630 level and was supported around the $1.3525 level. The common currency extended the strong gains it earned on Friday and today’s intraday low was above the 61.8% retracement of the move from $1.3680 to $1.3261. Data released in the U.S. today saw the June ISM manufacturing index improve to 56 from 55 in May. The big data release in the U.S. this week will be Friday’s June non-farm payrolls report and traders will look for early clues from the ADP private payrolls report on Thursday. In eurozone news, the EMU-13 purchasing managers’ index for the manufacturing sector improved to 55.6 last month from 55.0 in May, exceeding forecasts and representing the 24th consecutive month of growth. Most traders expect the European Central Bank to keep its main refinancing rate unchanged at 4.00% on Thursday. The ECB is widely expected to lift borrowing costs another +25bps to +50bps in 2007. Other data released today saw German May plant and machinery orders up 18% y/y. Euro bids are cited around the US$ 1.3520 level.

¥/ CNY

The yen appreciated vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as the greenback tested bids around the ¥122.35 level and was capped around the ¥123.25 level. Stops were reached below the ¥122.44 level, representing the 50% retracement of the move from ¥120.75 to ¥124.13. Data released in Japan overnight saw Bank of Japan’s quarterly tankan survey of business sentiment print at +23 in the headline diffusion index of large manufacturers while the index for large non-manufacturers was unchanged at +22. Also, there was weakness in confidence at smaller companies and it was reported that the combined capital expenditures of all Japanese non-financial firms is expected to increase 3.1% in the fiscal year to March 2008. Most traders believe the tankan results will not change the outlook that the central bank is on hold with interest rates ahead of parliamentary elections this month. The most likely scenario now involves a +25bps hike in the unsecured overnight call rate to +0.75% in August. Remarks from BoJ Governor Fukui and Deputy Governor Muto will be closely monitored this week. Other data released today say May employees’ average pay off 0.6% y/y. The Nikkei 225 stock index gained 0.04% to close at ¥18,146.30. Dollar bids are cited around the ¥121.55 levels. The euro came off vis-à-vis the yen as the single currency tested bids around the ¥166.12 level and was capped around the ¥166.86 level. The British pound weakened vis-à-vis the yen as sterling tested bids around the ¥246.02 level and was capped around the ¥247.58 level while the Swiss franc moved higher vis-à-vis the yen and tested offers around the ¥101.29 level. In Chinese news, the central parity rate for the U.S. dollar vis-à-vis the yuan was CNY 7.6075 today, down from CNY 7.6155 on Friday.

The British pound moved higher vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as cable tested offers around the US$ 2.0145 level and was supported around the $2.0070 level. Today’s intraday high represents a multi-decade high for the pair, eclipsing the April’s high around the $2.0130 level. Traders bid sterling higher ahead of the meeting of Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee on Thursday in which policymakers are expected to raise the repo rate by +25bps to 5.75%. Data released in the U.K. today saw Hometrack report house prices in England and Wales continued their deceleration in growth last month while the Q1 productivity growth rate climbed to 2.7%, its highest level since Q2 2004. Also, June manufacturing PMI receded to 54.3 from a revised 54.7 in May and U.K. service sector output was off 0.1% m/m in April. The Treasury Select Committee confirmed it is satisfied with the reappointments of Bean and Barker to the BoE’s MPC. Cable bids are cited around the US$ 2.0020 level. The euro moved higher vis-à-vis the British pound as the single currency tested offers around the ₤0.6770 level and was supported around the ₤0.6730 level.


The Swiss franc appreciated vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as the greenback tested bids around the CHF 1.2100 figure and was capped around the CHF 1.2225 level. Technically, today’s intraday low was just below the 76.4% retracement of the move from CHF 1.1995 to CHF 1.2475. Data released in Switzerland today saw the June purchasing managers’ index rise to 62.8 from 58.9 in May. Dollar offers are cited around the CHF 1.2190 level. The euro and British pound depreciated vis-à-vis the Swiss franc as the crosses tested bids around the CHF 1.6460 and CHF 2.4320 levels, respectively.


The Australian dollar gained ground vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as the Aussie tested offers around the US$ 0.8585 level and was supported around the $0.8470 level. Technically, today’s intraday low was just below the 23.6% retracement of the move from $0.8330 to $0.8520. Data released in Australia today saw the June performance of manufacturing index off 2.1 index points m/m to 53.1. Also, the TD Securities June inflation gauge was up 0.2% m/m. Australian dollar bids are cited around the US$ 0.8490 level. The New Zealand dollar appreciated vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar as the kiwi tested offers around the US$ 0.7815 level and was supported around the $0.7720 level. New Zealand dollar bids are cited around the US$ 0.7730 level.


The Canadian dollar appreciated vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as the greenback tested bids around the C$ 1.0525 level and was capped around the C$ 1.0635 level. May building permits and the June PMI survey will be released on Thursday. U.S. dollar offers are cited around the C$ 1.0635 level.

Gold/ Silver

Gold lifted higher vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as the yellow metal tested offers around the US$ 658.80 level and was supported around the 648.85 level. The U.S. dollar’s intraday losses resulted in higher metals prices. Additionally, physical demand was also cited. Silver rallied higher vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as the pair tested offers around the US$ 12.61 level and was supported around the $12.40 level.

Crude Oil

Crude oil came off vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as light, sweet NYMEX crude oil futures for August delivery tested bids around the US$ 69.61 level and were capped around the $70.70 level. Saturday’s terror attack at the Glasgow Airport and Friday’s attempted attacks in central London have traders on edge and are underpinning the price. Also, traders are loath to sell energy prices too much on the premise that U.S. gasoline stocks are falling and may be unable to keep up with demand during the U.S. summer driving season.


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