The US dollar had a mixed performance as it reacted to country-specific events. Data came in mixed, as building permits beat expectations with a gain from 1.15M to 1.23M while housing starts fell from 1.15M to 1.05M instead of rising to 1.18M. US existing home sales are lined up, along with the Philly Fed index and the initial jobless claims.
The euro was weighed down by remarks from EU official Weber who called for tough Brexit negotiations, admitting that the split could do damage to the remaining EU bloc as well. There were no major reports out of the region then while today has the ECB rate decision lined up. No actual easing announcements are expected but any downbeat remarks could drag the shared currency much lower.
The pound put up a strong fight in the forex arena but was unable to make much headway after EU official Weber reiterated the need to make Brexit negotiations tough on the UK. Employment data was slightly better than expected as the economy added 0.7K positions instead of losing 3.4K jobs. The average earnings index came in at 2.3% as expected while the unemployment rate didn’t budge from 4.9%. UK retail sales data is due today and a 0.3% rebound is eyed.
The franc consolidated to the dollar and pound but was able to advance against the euro. There were no reports out of the Swiss economy yesterday while today has the trade balance lined up. A larger surplus of 3.27B CHF is eyed compared to the earlier 3.02B CHF, possibly indicating a pickup in export activity.
The yen had a mixed performance as it weakened to the commodity currencies but strengthened against the European currencies and the dollar. There were no reports out of the Japanese economy yesterday and there are none lined up today so the yen could continue to react to country-specific events or overall market sentiment.
Commodity Currencies (AUD, NZD, CAD)
The Aussie and Kiwi held on to their gains after China’s data came in mostly in line with expectations, even as Australia printed a weak jobs report. Employment fell by 9.8K in September instead of showing the estimated 15.2K rise. The BOC kept rates on hold as expected but Governor Poloz admitted that the idea of additional stimulus was discussed. The Canadian central bank also lowered growth forecasts for the year on expectations of weak exports.