Once again we witnessed a quiet session for most majors in the Asian session with the exception of the Aussie Dollar. The combination of Australian GDP, which disappointed at .2% as opposed to the projected 0.4%, and comments from RBA deputy governor Battellino sent the AUD/USD lower in what was the big move of the day. AUD/USD slipped from highs just shy of 0.9070 to an eventual bottom a full big figure lower. The fall in AUD/JPY covered the same ground as it too dropped about 100 pips, in this instance to levels near 80.20. The weaker Aussie was fueled by Battellino's comments that the RBA's monetary policy was ''now back in a normal range'', thus throwing cold water on any hopes of further rate hikes come February. The RBA raised rates by 0.25% to 3.75% earlier in the month, and many investors had hoped that the central bank would resume rate hikes in February after a scheduled hiatus in January.
Elsewhere in Asia the markets were stagnate ahead of a jam-packed day of data in the US tomorrow. EUR/USD couldn't break out of a 35 pip range centered near the 1.4540 level, and GBP/USD was boxed in a similar 35 pip range although between 1.6240 and 1.6275. USD/JPY was even less exciting than its European counterparts as it traded between 89.70 and 89.50, and the crosses were directionless in choppy moves with slightly larger ranges. Gold was firmer by a few bucks, topping $1127.00 per ounce after an early visit to $1121.00 lows earlier in the day.
As far as the aforementioned US data due out tomorrow, we have Building Permits, Housing Starts, CPI, Current Account, and the main attraction of the FOMC rate decision and subsequent statement due up at 19:15GMT.