Pound News: UK Unemployment Rate Unexpectedly Rises
The mixed nature of the latest raft of UK labour market data prompted the Pound (GBP) to slump sharply yesterday, with markets unimpressed by a surprise uptick in unemployment.
Even though wage growth accelerated in the three months to December this was not enough to buoy GBP exchange rates, as the odds of any imminent Bank of England (BoE) action remain limited.
Any changes in the second estimate of fourth quarter UK gross domestic product may generate further volatility for Sterling today.
Euro News: EUR Falters as Signs Point Towards Loss of Growth Momentum
February’s Eurozone manufacturing and services PMIs proved uniformly weaker than forecast, to the detriment of Euro (EUR) exchange rates.
However, while the domestic economy lost some degree of momentum at the start of 2018 the signs still point towards another solid year of domestic growth.
The release of the latest European Central Bank (ECB) meeting minutes looks set to keep the Euro under pressure, with the tone likely to be rather dovish.
US Dollar News: Solid US PMIs Support USD Exchange Rates
While anticipation mounted for the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting minutes mounted through Wednesday’s trade this failed to weigh down the US Dollar (USD).
The relative strength of February’s US manufacturing and services PMIs helped to keep USD exchange rates on a positive footing, maintaining confidence in the underlying health of the world’s largest economy.
An uptick in this afternoon’s leading index figure may extend the US Dollar’s bullish run further.
Canadian Dollar News: Oil Worries Continue to Limit CAD Demand
A fresh slump in oil prices kept the Canadian Dollar (CAD) under pressure on Wednesday, suffering from the stronger US Dollar.
As forecasts point towards another build-up in US crude oil inventories on the week the commodity-correlated CAD is likely to remain on a downtrend in the near term.
With December’s Canadian retail sales figure also expected to show a contraction on the month investors may see little reason to favour the Canadian Dollar today.
Australian Dollar News: Stronger Wages Fail to Shore up ‘Aussie’
Although the fourth quarter Australian wage price index showed an unexpected improvement the appeal of the Australian Dollar (AUD) remained limited.
Given the rather dovish nature of the Reserve Bank of Australia’s (RBA) current policy outlook, and a sharp contraction in fourth quarter construction work, the ‘Aussie’ fell further out of favour.
With no fresh Australian data set for release ahead of the weekend AUD exchange rates are unlikely to find any rallying point.
Thursday, 22 February
09:30 UK Gross Domestic Product
12:30 European Central Bank Meeting Minutes
13:30 Canadian Retail Sales
15:00 US Leading Index
21:45 New Zealand Retail Sales
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