Dollar Trading To Be Dominated By Bernanke and Geithner Testimony

The USD is set for another volatile action-packed trading day as this weeks’ trading comes to a close. The Dollar saw sharp moves against the EUR, GBP and JPY yesterday. This type of behavior is set to continue today as vital economic news is set to come out of the U.S. The economic events that are set to lead the forex market are the publication of U.S. Revised UoM Consumer Sentiment at 13:55 GMT, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke’s Testimony and Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner’s speech on U.S. economic recovery both at 14:30 GMT.

Economic News

USD – Dollar Rallies vs. Yen on Economic Recovery Hopes

The U.S. Existing Home sales notched a 3rd monthly rise in June, and prices hit their highest since October. This fueled hopes the housing sector is finally on the mend, and many analysts hope this will help propel a broader economic recovery. According to analysts, the data suggests that the U.S housing sector is beginning to stabilize. This is a necessary component for a more meaningful U.S. recovery, and hence a stronger USD in the long term.

The U.S. Dollar soared against the Japanese Yen yesterday, due to the U.S. housing data. The USD rose 1.2% to as high as 95.30 vs. the JPY on Thursday. However, the pair finished trading at the 94.63 level. Against the EUR, the Dollar traded near a 7 week low at $1.4292, the weakest level since June 3. The pair finished trading much lower at the 1.4162 level. This was despite the greenback falling in early trading as the U.S. stock-index futures advanced on speculation that the worst of the recession may be over, prompting investors to purchase higher-yielding assets.

A number of analysts cautioned that the rally in risk sentiment on Thursday could be short-lived, as sentiment remains fragile and markets are probably quite near to seeing risk aversion returning to the forefront. This will be clearer to forex traders today, as 3 vital economic events are set to take pace in the U.S. These include the Revised UoM Consumer Sentiment at 13:55 GMT, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke’s testimony at 14:30 GMT and Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner’s speech on the economy also at 14:30 GMT.

EUR – EUR Hits 7 Week High Against the U.S Dollar

The European currency made gains against the U.S Dollar in early trading after data on U.S. jobless claims in the latest week came broadly in line with expectations. However, this was short lived, as the U.S. housing data was very optimistic, resulting in the pair closing far lower at the 1.4162 level. The EUR also fell against the GBP to the 0.8589 level as confidence returned to the British currency. However, the EUR/JPY pair was unchanged as demand for the safe-haven JPY fell yesterday.

The British Pound traded near the highest level this month against the USD, as advances in retail sales and mortgage approvals prompted speculation the recession in Britain is abating. In turn, this leads economists to the conclusion leading to speculation that the Bank of England (BOE) will increase its Interest Rate. The Bank of England reduced the main Interest Rate to a record low 0.5% in March. The Sterling also gained for a 2nd day against the EUR and the Yen as a government report showed Retail Sales increased last month at 4 times the pace forecast by economists.

There is much data coming out of Britain and the Euro-Zone today that is expected to determine the GBP and EUR crosses, as this week’s trading comes to a close. From Britain, the Prelim GDP and Index of services figures are set to be published at 08:30 GMT. From the Euro-Zone, the German Ifo Business Climate and Flash Manufacturing PMI are set to be released at 08:00 GMT. Forex traders are also advised to follow U.S. economic news too, as the market is set to be very volatile throughout the day.

JPY – Yen Loses Ground Amid Economic Recovery Hopes

The Japanese currency fell against the U.S Dollar and the GBP on Thursday, paring losses made the previous day. The JPY hit its lowest level in more than 2 weeks against the Dollar on Thursday, and a 3 week low against the EUR as traders in Asia sold Yen in anticipation of outflows from Japanese investors. The Yen also dropped versus the Swedish Krona and Norwegian Krone yesterday as Japanese financial companies prepared to raise at least 700 billion Yen ($7.42 billion) for funds that will be invested globally.

Much of The Japanese currency’s decline came about after the Finance Ministry said the contraction in the nation’s exports slowed to 35.7% in June from a year earlier. Japan’s trade data however provided hard evidence that the global economy is now on the mend, analysts stated. As the risk sentiment improves on the back of receding wariness about the prospects of the global economy, the Yen may weaken further against higher-yielding currencies.

Crude Oil – Crude Oil Eyes $67 a Barrel

The Crude Oil prices rose above $66 a barrel Thursday, ending at the highest level in 3 weeks at the $66.88 level. This came about as U.S. home sales data lifted stock markets and raised hopes for an economic recovery. Oil advanced 2.7% after the National Association of Realtors said home resales increased in June for a 3rd consecutive month.

Crude has risen in 6 of the recent 7 trading sessions. The rally came even after U.S petroleum data continued to show weak demand and rising inventories. Crude Oil and other commodities have tracked equity markets in recent months as analysts seek signs of a better economic outlook after the downturn cut world energy demand for the first time in a quarter of a century.

Technical News

The pair plummeted in yesterday’s trading to as low as the 1.4121 level. However, the chart’s oscillators support a possible upward correction today. This is supported by the hourly chart’s RSI and Stochastic Slow. The Stochastic Slow of the weekly chart also supports this notion. Entering the trend at an early stage may pay off, as end of week trading comes to a close.
The GBP/USD cross has been range trading between the 1.6310 and 1.6590 levels in the past few days. The technical data seems to be misleading, as the MACD of the weekly chart and the RSI of the hourly chart supports a bullish trend for today. However, the hourly chart’s MACD and the chart’s 4-hour Stochastic Slow support a bearish trend for today. Entering the pair when the signals are clearer may be a wise choice today.
The pair has been bullish for the past 2 days now, and there is much technical support for this trend to continue. The chart’s hourly RSI and the chart’s weekly MACD support this upward trend to continue for the USD/JPY cross today. This is also backed by the hourly chart’s Stochastic Slow. Going long with tight stops may turn out to pay off today.
The cross experienced notable bullish behavior yesterday, after almost a week of a bearish slide. The daily chart’s oscillators seem to be showing misleading data. However, the hourly chart’s oscillators and the weekly chart’s RSI signal that yesterday’s trend has run out of steam, and a bearish movement may be set for today. Going short with tight stops may be a wise choice today.

The Wild Card

Crude Oil
Crude Oil has been experiencing a bullish trend for the past week, and the black gold now stands at the $67 level. The daily chart’s Stochastic Slow and RSI signal that the pair may be overbought. However, the chart’s weekly MACD and hourly RSI support a bullish move for the commodity today. Going long with tight stops may turn out to pay off for forex traders today.

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