Moderate support for risk assets saw the greenback ease overnight with strength in economic data from the U.S and buoyant equity markets providing a good basis for stability across risk currencies. The number of U.S citizens filing for unemployment unexpectedly dropped recording 366,000 new applicants for the week ending December 10. Improvements in weekly unemployment claims in a welcome improvement for the U.S and is seen as a pre-cursor to the monthly job numbers.
Across the Atlantic, Euro-zone consumer price data came in on target with annual inflation growth of 3 percent. After falling to 11-month lows this week, the Euro managed to squeeze gains overnight with price action regain some form above $US1.30, nevertheless the Euro remains particularly vulnerable and is hardly displaying and material signs of a change in trajectory. To a degree, continued Euro region turmoil can also promote currency strength given the natural divestment out of risk assets abroad by European companies in an effort to shore up investments. That said the rapids are still very much against these repatriation flows with the potential downside all too enticing for speculative euro bears keeping the currency under pressure.
The Aussie dollar was able to find support above 99 US cents after falling to lows of 98.6 US cents yesterday. However the local unit has underperformed its major commodity bloc peers with the Kiwi and CAD gaining the upper hand. The Swiss franc was a prime beneficiary overnight after the Swiss National Bank interest rate decision. Some corners of the market expected the SNB to step up efforts to depreciate the franc further after setting the 1.20 Euro floor earlier this year - however the premise of the SNB sitting on the sidelines found the franc under natural upside pressure recording gains against its major counterparts.
In the absence of local economic feedback, we expect the local unit to adhere to technical points of support seen throughout the last 24-hours. Lows of 98.6 US cent is an obvious potential support level; however should we see another lethargic Friday session, there's a good chance we can hold above 99 US cents before Europe kicks off for business this evening. At the time of writing local unit is buying 99.15 US cents.