The US dollar barely established a clear direction in recent trading sessions as medium-tier reports were mixed. Initial jobless claims landed at 234K from 233K, still lower than the 238K consensus. Preliminary wholesale inventories slid 0.3% instead of showing a 0.2% buildup to indicate stronger demand and likely rising business production later on. However, the goods trade balance revealed a larger deficit of $67.6 billion on higher imports and lower exports, particularly of automotives and consumer goods. The US preliminary GDP reading is due today and a slight upward revision to 0.9% is eyed.
The euro was able to hold its ground and even take advantage of the dip in commodities. Most European banks were closed for Ascension Day yesterday so liquidity was low. There are no reports due from the euro zone today, which suggests that market sentiment or currency-specific action could push euro pairs around.
The pound took in some heavy hits after the UK GDP reading was downgrade from 0.3% to 0.2% to suggest that the economy might not be as resilient as many expect. However, preliminary business investment still beat expectations with a 0.6% gain versus the projected 0.3% uptick. There are no reports due from the UK today so traders might focus on Brexit-related headlines.
The franc regained ground as European currencies and commodities were weaker for the most part of the day. Swiss banks were closed for the holiday yesterday so there were no reports printed then and none are due today, leaving market sentiment in the driver’s seat.
The yen took advantage of the fall in commodities even as a bit of risk appetite returned in the US session. National and Tokyo core CPI readings are lined up today, with the former expected to rise from 0.2% to 0.4% and the latter likely to show a flat reading after the previous 0.1% dip.
Commodity Currencies (AUD, NZD, CAD)
The comdolls gave up a lot of ground as commodities tumbled after the OPEC decision. The cartel agreed to a 9-month extension of their output deal as expected, without any additional adjustments in production levels or requiring exempted member nations to join in the output cuts. Saudi’s energy minister urged US shale oil producers to moderate their output as well. There are no other reports due from the comdoll economies for the rest of the week.