Tuesday July 3, 2007 - 15:49:40 GMT
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Forex and Commodity Market Commentary and Analysis (3 July 2007)
The euro weakened vis-√†-vis the U.S. dollar today as the single currency tested bids around the US$ 1.3585 level and was capped around the $1.3635 level. Technically, today‚Äôs intraday low was right around the 76.4% retracement of the move from $1.3680 to $1.3260. Data released in the U.S. today saw pending sales of existing homes fall an annualized 3.5% m/m and 13.3% y/y in May, underscoring the fragile state of the U.S. housing market. Also, Redbook U.S. retail sales were off 1.1% m/m in the first four weeks of June and ISCS-UBS chain store sales were up 0.1% last week. Other data released today saw May factory orders down 0.5% from a revised +0.5% in April. The major data in the U.S. will be released on Friday when June non-farm payrolls data are released one day after the ADP private employment report. Many economists are expecting new jobs creation in the vicinity of 120,000 new jobs. In eurozone news, European Central Bank member Bini Smaghi talked about intervention today and said the ECB could act ‚Äúpromptly‚ÄĚ but his remarks were not seen as threatening the markets with actual intervention. The European Commission warned a further appreciation of the euro could slow exports in the eurozone. Data released in the eurozone today saw May producer price inflation up 0.3% m/m and 2.3% y/y while May unemployment ticked lower to 7.0% from 7.1%. Euro bids are cited around the US$ 1.3550 level.
The yen appreciated marginally vis-√†-vis the U.S. dollar today as the greenback tested bids around the ¬•122.10 level and was capped around the ¬•122.65 level. Technically, today‚Äôs intraday low was just above the 61.8% retracement of the move from ¬•120.75 to ¬•124.15. The Ministry of Finance announced a shakeup today in which Naoyuki Shinohara will become the vice finance minister for international affairs, succeeding Hiroshi Watanabe as the country‚Äôs top currency diplomat. This move will likely result in more verbal intervention. Bank of Japan Deputy Governor Muto reiterated the central bank‚Äôs gradualist stance on interest rates saying ‚ÄúAs stated in the (BoJ‚Äôs) outlook report (released in April), the BoJ will gradually adjust rates in tandem with the pace of an improvement in the economy and prices, and after confirming the likelihood that sustainable economic growth will continue under stable price conditions.‚ÄĚ Data released in Japan today saw the June monetary base fall 4.1% y/y, down for the sixteenth consecutive month. The Nikkei 225 stock index climbed 0.02% to close at ¬•18,149.90. Dollar bids are cited around the ¬•121.55 level. The euro came off vis-√†-vis the yen as the single currency tested bids around the ¬•166.20 level and was capped around the ¬•167.15 level. The British pound and Swiss franc weakened vis-√†-vis the yen as the crosses tested bids around the ¬•246.25 and ¬•100.50 levels, respectively. In Chinese news, the yuan‚Äôs central parity rate was set at CNY 7.5951 vis-√†-vis the U.S. dollar, down from CNY 7.6075 yesterday.
The British pound weakened marginally vis-√†-vis the U.S. dollar today as cable tested bids around the US$ 2.0130 level and was capped around the $2.0195 level. Today‚Äôs intraday high represents a fresh multi-decade high for the pair. Traders bid the pair higher ahead of Thursday‚Äôs interest rate decision from Bank of England‚Äôs Monetary Policy Committee. Most traders believe the MPC will lift the repo rate by +25bps to 5.75%. Data released in the U.K. today saw the June construction sector PMI survey improve while REC reported June wage pressures remained elevated. Cable bids are cited around the US$ 2.0090 level. The euro came off vis-√†-vis the British pound as the single currency tested bids around the ‚ā§0.6740 level and was capped around the ‚ā§0.6755 level.
The Swiss franc came off vis-√†-vis the U.S. dollar today as the greenback tested offers around the CHF 1.2175 level and was supported around the CHF 1.2090 level. Technically, today‚Äôs intraday high was right around the 61.8% retracement of the move from CHF 1.1995 to CHF 1.2475. Data released in Switzerland today saw June consumer prices up 0.1% m/m and 0.6% y/y, relatively tame inflation data that diminish the chances Swiss National Bank will move interest rates higher before their next scheduled meeting in September. The most likely scenario remains a +25bps monetary tightening in September even though consumer prices are within the central bank‚Äôs target zone for price stability. Dollar offers are cited around the CHF 1.2235 level. The euro and British pound moved higher vis-√†-vis the Swiss franc as the crosses tested offers around the CHF 1.6555 and CHF 2.4530 levels, respectively.
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