Forex Today: AUD bulls shrug-off dismal Aus jobs, UK retail sales – key

Forex Today: AUD bulls shrug-off dismal Aus jobs, UK retail sales – key

Risk-on continued to remain the main theme across the fx board for the second straight Asian session today, as the stocks cheered ebbing fears over a trade war and geopolitical tensions around Syria while oil prices at 3.5-year peaks amid inventory draw also boosted the appetite for risk assets.

As a result, both the Antipodeans erased losses and jumped back into the bids, with the Aussie having emerged the strongest. The AUD bulls regained the 0.78 handle, benefiting from risk-on that negated the impact of dismal Australian jobs data. Meanwhile, the Kiwi maintained a cautious tone, as upbeat NZ Q1 CPI data failed to impress.

USD/JPY rallied hard and regained the 107.50 barrier, but failed to sustain above the last, as the Nikkei 225 index trimmed gains towards the closing. The Yen markets also digested the Chinese Commerce Ministry announcements, citing they are considering banning and imposing tariffs on certain imports.   

Main topics in Asia

US Fed's Quarles: not impressed by flattening yield curve

The US Federal Reserve's Randal Quarles is speaking at the Bretton Woods annual meeting today, giving his thoughts on a broad array of topics.

1Q CPI for New Zealand better than expected

The NZ 1Q CPI came in a little better than expectations of 0.4% vs actual 0.5%.

Notes from US' Trump, Japan's Abe joint press conference

US President Donald Trump and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe held a joint press conference from the White House today, and here's a general summation of their respective statements.

Australia jobless rate ticked lower in March, employment change – a big miss

Australia unemployment rate ticked lower to 5.5 percent in March even as the economy added only 4,900 jobs, the latest data published by Australia Bureau of Statistics (ABS) showed this Thursday. 

Asian stocks report gains, the treasury yield curve continues to flatten

Asian stocks are flashing green despite the moderate drop in the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA).

China Commerce Ministry: Trade war will hurt US factories and consumers

The comments from China commerce ministry are hitting the wires via Reuters:

China to ban imports of another 16 scrap metals and chemical waste products from end-2018

Livesquawk reports the latest headlines citing that China is considering banning imports of another 16 scrap metals and chemical waste products from the end of 2018.

Key Focus ahead

Today’s EUR calendar is relatively quiet when compared to an eventful Asian session, as markets brace for another disappointment in the UK macro news amid a sharp drop expected in the Kingdom’s consumer spending for the month of March. Meanwhile, the Eurozone current account data will fill in for an otherwise data-light EU docket.

A bevy of FOMC officials continue to rule the calendar this week, with the speech by Chair of the Committees on Financial Stability, Lael Brainard is due during mid-Europe just ahead of the Canadian ADP Non-Farm Employment Change release.

From the US docket, we see the releases of the Philly Fed manufacturing index and jobless claims among other minority reports while the Fed official Quarles testimony on supervision and regulation before the Senate Banking Committee, in Washington DC, will be also closely heard for any insights on the US rate hike outlook and US-China trade war. Also, the Bank of England (BOE) policymaker Cunliffe’s speech will hog the limelight later on Thursday.

EUR/USD continues to make itself at home beneath 1.24

Euro-area inflation data disappointed yesterday, but well-timed weakness in the US Dollar is keeping the EUR afloat at its current levels, but with nothing impactful on the economic calendar for Thursday for the EUR/USD, it'll be up to market appetite to give the Euro a direction to travel.


GBP/USD: On the back foot ahead of the UK retail sales release

Clearly, the bull grip has weakened and the tide could turn in favor of the GBP bears if the UK March retail sales fall more than the expected drop to 0.5 percent month-on-month.

UK retail sales to decline in March – Nomura

In the view of the analysts at Nomura, the UK retail sales numbers are expected to decline in the month of March, tracking the downbeat readings the BRC reported earlier this month.

EURUSD: Further upside is likely?

EURUSD still consolidated in the triangle. On daily chart, we see a textbook 5 wave up from December 2016. The price also continuous closed above daily Ichimoku cloud. Near term overshoot to 1.2456/1.2500 could not be ruled out.


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