The US dollar managed to take a break from its dive in yesterday’s sessions, as risk aversion returned to the markets. Data from the US also came in stronger than expected, with existing home sales up from 5.07M to 5.33M. For today, the Philly Fed index and initial jobless claims are due. The index could fall from 12.4 to 8.1 while the jobs figure could show 265K claimants.
The euro gave up ground to most of its rivals when traders started pricing in dovish expectations for today’s ECB statement. No actual changes are expected for now since the central bank just expanded their easing program in their earlier policy statement. Still, downbeat remarks and indications that they’re willing to lower rates further could be bearish for the euro.
The pound was unable to sustain its climb when UK jobs data missed expectations. Claimants rose by 6.7K versus the projected 11.9K decline while the previous reading was revised to show a smaller drop in joblessness of 9.3K. The unemployment rate held steady at 5.1% as expected but the average earnings index fell from 2.1% to 1.8% instead of staying unchanged. UK retail sales data is due today and a 0.1% drop in consumer spending is eyed.
The franc gave up ground to the dollar and most of its rivals despite the improvement in Swizterland’s ZEW economic sentiment index. The reading rose from 2.5 to 11.5 to indicate higher optimism, but traders appear to be lightening up on their franc holdings ahead of the ECB statement. Switzerland’s trade balance is due today.
The yen was weaker against the dollar despite the lack of top-tier data from Japan. Risk appetite was present during the Asian trading session but was more subdued later on. There are no reports up for release from Japan today, keeping market sentiment in play.
Commodity Currencies (AUD, NZD, CAD)
The comdolls were slightly weaker in recent sessions, although the Loonie was able to score a few more gains. US crude oil inventories rose by 2.1 million barrels, slightly lower than the estimate. Canada’s wholesale sales report showed a 2.2% decline instead of the estimated 0.4% dip. Visitor arrivals in New Zealand rose by 4.1% while Australia’s NAB business confidence index fell from 5 to 4 in Q1.