Forex Major Currencies Outlook (Jan 09, 2017)

USD

The US dollar gave up a bit of ground when the actual December NFP reading fell short of estimates, posting a 158K gain versus the projected 175K increase. However, the currency held fast and advanced later on as traders got wind of upward revisions in the November report and realized that the pickup in the jobless rate was due to higher labor force participation. Average hourly earnings also beat expectations with a 0.4% rise versus the estimated 0.3% uptick. The Fed’s labor market conditions index is up for release today.

EUR

The euro continued to climb against its peers even though data came in mixed. German factory orders fell 2.5% as expected while retail sales slipped 1.8% versus the projected 0.8% decline. German industrial production and trade balance are due today, along with the region’s Sentix investor confidence index and unemployment rate.

GBP

The pound resumed its slide against most of its peers as there were no reports to keep it supported and traders shrugged off the upside surprises in PMIs earlier in the week. UK Halifax HPI is due today and a 0.3% rise in house prices is expected, although traders are likely to pay more attention to Brexit-related headlines.

CHF

The franc was in a weak spot against most of its peers, except against the British pound. Swiss foreign currency reserves ticked lower, easing fears that the the SNB is intervening in the currency market. Swiss retail sales data is up for release today and a 0.4% year-over-year rebound is eyed.

JPY

The yen was also on weak footing as risk appetite appeared to improve and traders revived their love for the dollar. Japanese banks are closed for the holiday today so traders could continue to react to market sentiment in trading yen pairs.

Commodity Currencies (AUD, NZD, CAD)

The comdolls were the strongest performers towards the end of the week, particularly the Loonie which was lifted by strong Canadian jobs data. The economy added 53.7K jobs in December instead of losing 5.1K jobs while the trade balance turned into a 0.5B CAD surplus instead of printing a 1.6B CAD deficit. The Ivey PMI also beat expectations by rising from 56.8 to 60.8 versus the 56.0 consensus. The BOC Business Outlook Survey is due next.

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