- The dollar fell versus most major currencies on Monday. China's strong international trade boosted global recovery optimism and investor risk appetite. The greenback was also pressured as US short-term interest rates continued to decline. Investors lowered expectations for an early Fed rate rise following Friday's release of disappointing employment data. The US yield curve steepened. The S&P 500 rose 2.00 to 1146.98. The yen gained for a second day after an unsuccessful attempt to break the long-term trend last week. Sterling rose despite a CBI report showing an increase in UK financial-services company pessimism. The Australian dollar rose, boosted by strong Chinese economic growth. The Canadian dollar fell, consolidating recent strong gains.
- The EUR/USD rallied for a second day following the weak US labor report. Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis President James Bullard said US interest rates may remain low for quite some time. The EUR/USD found support on the 200-day moving average last week. The pair had become overbought, but the RSI is now neutral. There are resistances in the 1.45 and 1.47 areas. The upside potential is unlikely to be higher than 1.47. There are supports at the 1.44 handle and from the 200-day moving average in the 1.42 area.
Financial and Economic News and Comments
US & Canada
- Canada's seasonally adjusted housing starts advanced a more-than-expected 5.9% m/m in December, the third monthly gain, to a 174,500 annualized rate, the highest level in 14 months, from an upwardly revised 164,800 pace in November, according to figures from Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation. The December advance was led by rises in both single and multiple starts. December housing starts increased 1.3% y/y.
- Canadian seasonally adjusted building permits fell a more-than-expected 4.6% m/m in November, the first fall in four months, to C$5.94 billon ($5.75 billion), after an upwardly revised 20.0% m/m jump to a 13-month high in October, according to data from Statistics Canada. The November fall was led by a 21.9% m/m drop in nonresidential permits to C$2.14 billion. November building permits rose 23.1% y/y.
- According to the business outlook survey released by the Bank of Canada, Canadian businesses reported near-record optimism about their future sales. The senior loan officer survey showed credit conditions eased for the first time since Q2 2007.
- Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta President Dennis Lockhart said the US economic recovery will be slow and the banking system is still weakened, warranting low interest rates until the economy shows momentum.
- According to a survey by the Confederation of British Industry, a balance of 13% of UK financial-services companies expects a reduction in business volumes in Q1 2010, the most negative expectation since December 2008.
- Switzerland's real retail sales decreased 1.7% m/m sa in November and grew 0.6% y/y nsa, data from the Federal Statistical Office showed, while nominal retail sales declined 1.2% m/m sa and increased 0.2% y/y nsa.
- China's exports rose 17.7% y/y in December, the first gain in 14 months, to $130.7 billion, the fourth-largest on record, while imports surged a record 55.9% y/y to $112.3 billion, trade data from the Customs Bureau showed, leaving an $18.4 billion trade surplus. FX Strategy
FX Strategy Update