Tuesday, September 6, 2016

"Dollar Heavy in Quiet Markets"

From Marc to Market:
The US dollar is trading heavily against most of the major and emerging market currencies. However, the losses are modest, and the greenback remains within recent ranges.  The Antipodean and Scandi bloc currencies are performing best.  
The Reserve Bank of Australia is the first of four central banks from high income countries that meet this week.  It left the cash rate at the record low 1.5%.  It is Governor Stevens last meeting before his deputy Lowe takes the helm.   Lowe inherits and economy that is still adjusting to the commodity shock and slowing of China.  However, he is not inheriting a pre-commitment on policy.  Next month's Q3 inflation report is seen as an important for monetary policy in Q4.  The central bank does not appear to be in a hurry to cut rates again this year, but could be forced by circumstances and data.   
The Australian dollar is the strongest of the majors, gaining 0.75% against the US dollar.  It has approached a technical target near $0.7655. Recall its recent peak was near $0.7750 on August 10 before sliding to $0.7490 at the end of August.  With today's advance, it has retraced 61.8% of the down draft.  The next target is $0.7700.  Support is seen in the $0.7600-$0.7620 area.
Although the BOJ meets later in a couple of weeks, it remains in focus.  The balance of speculation has shifted in recent days to the possibility the BOJ shifts the composition of its bond purchases to facilitate a steepening of the yield curve.  This would ostensibly involve purchasing less long-dated JGBs.  In anticipation, the yield curve (2 yr-30 yr/40yr) has steepened recently.  On Thursday, the MOF will meet with investors to assess the demand for 40-year bonds.  It is thought the MOF may increase its sales by around JPY400 bln to JPY2 trillion.  Between the MOF and BOJ, there appears to be an willingness to accept higher long-term yields.  
The dollar's momentum against the yen that had propelled the greenback above JPY104 last week has eased.  It remains within yesterday's range, which was within last Friday's.   Support is seen in the JPY102.60-JPY102.80 band.    
The UK's BRC snapped the better-than-expected data streak with a 0.9% decline in same-store sales in August.  This offsets the 1.1% gain in July.  Economists had shrugged off their Brexit blues and anticipated a 1.4% gain.  Sterling eased on the news but remained higher on the day.  It is finding demand around $1.3320.  On the topside, $1.35 is key.  The short-term technicals suggest the market has not given up on it.  A break of $1.3250 would suggest this attempt has failed.  
The eurozone provided details of its Q2 GDP, which was left unchanged from the initial of 0.3%.  Exports contributed 0.5% percentage points, while household and government spending rose 0.2% and 0.1% respectively.  The euro was uninspired and has been confined to a little more than a quarter of a cent through the Asian session and European morning.    Resistance is seen in the $1.1180-$1.1200 area.  The euro appears to be carving a shelf in front of $1.1100.  In four of the past five sessions, it has approached but not broken below the 200-day moving average, which is found just above $1.1130 today....MORE