The US dollar was mostly stronger at the end of the previous week as medium-tier data came in better than expected. Existing home sales rose from 5.35 million to 5.39 million instead of falling to 5.30 million. The federal budget balance also showed a surplus of 8.0 billion USD instead of the estimated 0.9 billion USD deficit and was a huge improvement over the earlier 107.7 billion USD shortfall. There are no reports due from the US today so the attention could be on Trump’s next Fed Chair pick.
The euro had a mixed run as it weakened to the dollar and yen but held its ground against the commodity currencies. German PPI beat expectations with a 0.3% gain versus the 0.1% consensus while the region’s current account surplus widened to 33.3 billion EUR versus the estimated 26.2 billion EUR figure. To top it off, the previous reading enjoyed an upgrade to 31.5 billion EUR. The region’s consumer confidence index is due next and no change to the earlier -1 reading is eyed.
The pound pulled off a strong finish on Friday after the UK public sector borrowing report printed better than expected results. The deficit stood at 5.3 billion GBP compared to the estimated 5.7 billion GBP shortfall while the previous reading was revised to show a smaller deficit of 4.1 billion GBP. CBI industrial order expectations data is due next and a rise from 7 to 9 is expected.
The franc was mostly stuck in consolidation on Friday, except against the British pound. There were no reports out of the Swiss economy then and none are due today so market sentiment and currency-specific action could come into play.
The yen had a weak finish last week and gapped down to its counterparts this week as the elections in Japan took place. Abe emerged with strong support for his leadership and political party, which means a likely tax hike in 2019 and constitutional reform. This also means support for the BOJ’s easy monetary policy. There are no reports from Japan today so risk sentiment and post-election moves could stay in play.
Commodity Currencies (AUD, NZD, CAD)
The Kiwi continued to bleed against its counterparts throughout Friday as the decision of NZF to support the Labour Party weighed on economic prospects. In Canada, headline CPI was weaker than expected at 0.2% versus 0.3% while core retail sales posted a surprise 0.7% drop instead of the estimated 0.3% gain. Headline retail sales was also below expectations with a 0.3% drop instead of the 0.5% gain, weighing heavily on BOC hike forecasts. Canadian wholesale sales is due next and a 1.1% increase is expected.