NEW YORK (Forex News Now) – After having softened immediately ahead of the New Year´s holidays, the Greenback has been having a relatively positive first week of 2011 in terms of currency market trading activity.
Today´s forex price action was no exception, with a brief intraday analysis showing EUR/USD down on the day at 1.2993, GBP/USD also down at 1.5468, USD/JPY up slightly at 83.28 and USD/CHF virtually unchanged at 0.9657.
The fx trading news is now focusing intently on tomorrow’s key U.S. Non Farm Payrolls release that is likely to have a significant impact on all of the major currency pairs.
Today´s Economic Data Results and Tomorrow’s Outlook
The key U.S. data release today was Weekly Initial Jobless Claims that came out at a slightly disappointing 409K versus the 400K expected and the 391K result seen last week. The Dollar will now likely take a breather ahead of the major Non Farm Payrolls release due out at 8:30am EST tomorrow. The market’s consensus for the NFP was boosted by Wednesday’s high ADP employment number from +136K to where it is currently centered on +159K. The U.S. Unemployment Rate is due out at the same time and is expected to improve to 9.7% from last month’s 9.8%.
Today’s Eurozone data included substantial disappointment on the Retail Sales front, with EZ sales falling by -0.8% for the month, compared with the +0.3% rise expected and its former 0.0% result. Nevertheless, German Factory Orders were up by an impressive 5.2% versus the +1.0% anticipated and the previous month’s 1.6% gain. Tomorrow will feature a speech starting at 4am EST by ECB President Trichet at the at the CSU convention in Wildbad Kreuth, Germany. This will be followed at 5:00am by the release of the EZ Unemployment Rate that is expected to remain unchanged at 10.1%. German Industrial Production will also be out at 6:00am with a consensus of a -0.1% drop versus last month’s +2.9% rise.
The U.K. economic calendar today featured a shock drop in Services PMI that fell to 49.7 from 53 and was also well below the consensus call for 52.9. The survey’s decline back below its pivotal 50 level indicated fresh contraction in the U.K. services sector and was the worst result seen since May of 2009. Also, the BOE´s Credit Conditions Survey was out that noted a marked contraction in lending for house buying in the U.K during the last quarter that was expected to continue into 2011. Tomorrow has nothing notable due out in Britain on the economic data front, so the focus for GBP/USD will be the U.S. NFP number.
Switzerland saw the release today of a flat CPI result for last month that was just a touch higher than the -0.1% consumer price drop forecast, but lower than its former +0.2% reading. Tomorrow’s calendar features the Swiss Unemployment Rate out at 1:45am EST for which the consensus is steady at 3.6%.