USDJPY has been slowly trending higher on its 1-hour time frame, as the pair is creating an ascending channel on the chart. Price is currently testing support at the bottom of the channel near the 119.50 minor psychological level and may be headed back to the top at the 121.00 major psychological mark or until the mid-channel area of interest from 120.00 to 120.50.
Stochastic is already indicating overbought conditions though, which means that buying pressure is fading. If so, the pair could resume its drop and retest support at the channel bottom. The shorter-term EMA has just crossed below the longer-term EMA, suggesting that a selloff is likely to take place.
If selling momentum is strong enough, a downside channel break might take place and the pair could be in for more declines. This could lead to a test of the next support around the 118.50 region or much lower until the 117.00 level.
The path of least resistance is to the downside since the US just printed a dismal retail sales report for March. Headline retail sales showed a mere 0.9% gain versus the projected 1.1% growth while core retail sales indicated a 0.4% uptick instead of the estimated 0.7% increase.
Prior to this, the US economy showed a weaker than expected NFP reading, suggesting that the previous streak of jobs growth might not be sustained. This could delay the Fed’s tightening time frame from June to September this year, which could lead to a bit of near-term dollar weakness.
Risk aversion is still in support of both currencies though, but it seems that the yen is in a better spot for now. Data from Japan hasn’t been too disappointing, although there’s no denying that inflation is still considerably weak in the nation and that further easing could be warranted.
By Kate Curtis from Trader’s Way