Developments in Australia and the UK of late suggest that the British pound (GBP) is poised to make gains against the Australian dollar (AUD) in the short-term.
The Reserve Bank of Australia’s (RBA) latest statement suggested that the central bank might ease monetary policy in case of deceleration in inflation.
“The RBA has already downgraded its economic outlook on the back of domestic considerations and fear surrounding the eurozone debt crisis. Should the CPI ease in Q1, the RBA could be tempted to cut the key rate, currently at 4.25 percent, at the next meeting on 1 May,” said a note from Societe Generale Cross Asset Research.
On the GBP front, better economic data in the UK recently have lessened the expectations for further quantitative easing (QE) by the Bank of England (BoE). Analysts believe that UK economy is on the path to post a positive gross domestic product (GDP) growth in the first quarter this year, after contracting by 0.3 percent in the fourth quarter last year.
Also, today’s UK inflation data further reduced the chances of additional stimulus by the BoE, and if the central bank’s minutes show that it is not willing to go for further QE, GBP could post gains the AUD. Further, renewed concerns over the euroarea debt crisis would be a positive factor for the GBP due to its safe-haven status.
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“With the UK less exposed than other European countries to most European peripherals, the GBP continues to be perceived as a safe haven in the euro debt crisis. The current fears on Spain do not bode well for risk sentiment. Thus, the GBP has more room for further gains in the short term,” said the note.
On the other hand, AUD is continued to weigh down by the slowdown in the Chinese economy. The Chinese economy slowed for the fifth straight quarter in Q1 2012, with annual growth rate easing to 8.1 percent from 8.9 percent in the previous quarter.
“All seems to point to further gains on the GBP/AUD. The 1.55 area is in sight. The road would then be opento 1.5683 (19 Dec highs) and then 1.6057 (23 November highs),” said Societe Generale.