Australia: The AUD has opening relatively unchanged this morning due to the quiet offshore trading session as the US and UK markets were closed for public holidays. The movements in the AUD overnight were mainly due to the end of month trades being executed which saw the AUD fall below USD0.8400 but once these were done we saw it strengthen back up to USD0.8450. The lack of movement in the local currency is likely to be the case this morning, before the release of Australian Retail Sales data for April this morning and also the RBA board meeting this afternoon. Expectations are for retail sales during the month of April to post a modest increase of 0.3%. Top tier data like this is of great interest to the RBA when considering their decision on interest rates. Since the last interest rate increase in April, data releases including March retail sales, housing data for March and consumer confidence have all posted disappointing results. It is expected that today the RBA will leave the cash rate target at 4.5% but investors are unsure as to how long the pause will continue. That is why the comments following the announcement will be of interest with many looking to hints as to where the RBA currently stand and direction for future movements.
Majors: The EUR made modest gains against the USD overnight opening this morning at USD1.2305 despite some conflicting data. The European Business Climate Indicator for May showed an increase of 0.34 compared to market expectations of an increase of 0.20. While businesses were positive the Economic Sentiment Indicator unexpectedly fell to 98.4 as the debt crisis in Europe continued to affect the markets. This was compared to an expected result of 100.6. Despite these recent issues in Europe the Consumer Confidence Indicator for May was unchanged at -18. In Canada, their first quarter GDP data beat market expectations and has cemented the likelihood that they will announce an increase its nations interest rate at tonight’s Bank of Canada interest rate decision. This is likely to also lift the CAD which has taken quite a tumble in recent times.