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Monday, 26 Jul 2010
Bank Stress Tests Fail Support the Euro Due To Questionable Reliability
After a long time waiting, the Euro-Zone's famous Bank Stress Tests results were finally published on Friday evening. The results failed to reassure investors regarding the stability of the European banking system as analysts claimed that the test weren't strict enough. As this week begins, the reliability of the tests will remain the main topic. Will it eventually boost the Euro?
USD - The Dollar Ends A Volatile Trading Week Following Mixed Data from the U.S.
The Dollar saw mixed results against the major currencies during last week's trading session. The Dollar had ups and downs vs. the Euro, and eventually the EUR/USD level closed at the 1.29 level. The Dollar also slightly strengthened against the Yen, while falling against the Pound.
The Dollar's volatile session came as a result of the mixed data from the U.S. economy. On one hand, the housing sector provided positive data last week. The U.S. Building Permits report showed that 0.59M new residential buildings permits were issued during June. The meaning of the data is that the quantity of future construction will rise; obtaining a permit is among the first steps in constructing a new building.
However on the other hand, the unemployment reports delivered negative signals. The weekly Unemployment Claims report showed that jobless claims in the U.S. increased more than forecasted to 464,000. The number of individuals who filed for unemployment insurance for the first time during the past week rose from 427,000, and failed to reach expectations for 449,000.
As for the week ahead, many interesting economic reports are expected from the U.S. The most significant publications look to be the New Home Sales, the Consumer Confidence, Durable Goods Orders indices, the Unemployment Claims, and the Gross Domestic Product (GDP). All these reports have potential to impact global trading and the Dollar in particular, and traders are suggested to follow the end results.
EUR - Stress Tests Fail to Ease Investors' Concerns from a Possible Debt Crisis
The Euro saw a volatile session during last week's trading. The Euro began last week's trading with a bullish trend vs. the Dollar and the Yen. However the Euro then saw sharp drops and by the end of the week, resumed to its previous levels.
The Euro had a rising trend with the beginning of the week as positive data from the Euro-Zone supported the 16-nations currency. The German Producer Price Index (PPI) rose by 0.6% in June, beating expectations for a 0.2% rise. The report suggested that inflation in Germany rose for the 4th consecutive time, reassuring investors that the German economy is recovering. The European Industrial New Orders report also provided an unexpected positive data. The report showed that industrial orders in the Euro-Zone rose by 2.8% in May, well above expectations for a 0.1% drop.
However, by the end of the trading week, the Euro erased its profits, as the European Bank Stress Tests failed to reassure investors concerns from a possible sovereign crisis. The tests showed that merely 7 banks have flunked the stress test, out of 91 major banks that were tested. The supposedly positive data failed to create an impact in the market as investors felt that the tests may not have been strict enough. However, traders should take under consideration that European governments are putting a lot of efforts in the attempt to convince investors regarding the reliability of the tests results.
As for the week ahead, a batch of data is expected from the Euro-Zone. Traders are advised to focus on the German Preliminary Consumer Price Index (CPI), which will prove if the German inflation is indeed rising as last week's PPI data showed. Traders should also keep in mind the affects of the bank stress tests, as these results will continue to impact the market this week.
JPY - Yen Weakens Against the Majors
The Yen fell against most of the major currencies during last week's trading session. The Yen dropped about 100 pips vs. the Dollar and about 300 pips against the Pound, and the GBP/JPY pair is now trading near the 135.50 level.
The Yen dropped last week due to speculations that Asia's economic recovery is advancing. These speculations have increased risk-appetite in the market, and have turned investors to look for riskier assets. The Yen is considered to be a safe-haven currency, and tends to fall as risk aversion weakens. The speculations came following several reports which showed that South Korea's economy grew faster than analysts forecasted, and Japanese exports rose more than expected.
As for this week, many interesting publications are expected from the Japanese economy. The main news events that traders are advised to follow are the Retail Sales on Monday and the Tokyo Core Consumer Price Index (CPI) on Thursday. If the reports will continue to provide positive signals, the Yen might weaken further as investors will continue to look for higher-yielding assets.
OIL - Crude Oil Prices Consolidates Around $79 a Barrel
Crude oil prices continued to climb during last week's trading session. A barrel of crude oil was traded around $76 a barrel at the beginning of last week and as the week progressed, crude oil prices soared, and a barrel of crude oil is now trading around $79 a barrel.
Crude oil strengthened last week due to several positive economic reports from the U.S. and the Euro-Zone. The positive reports have created speculations that global energy demand will increase, and as a result, crude oil prices consistently rose. The bullish trend halted close to the weekend as concerns regarding tropical storm Bonnie have eased due to reports claiming that the storm has weakened.
As for this week, traders are advised to follow the main publications from the U.S. and the Euro-Zone, as they have significant affect on oil prices. Trades should also follow the U.S. Crude Oil Inventories report on Wednesday as this tends to have an instant impact on spot crude oil prices.
Last week's trading has led to a doji candlestick formation on the weekly chart indicating a potential reversal lower for the pair. Traders will want to combine this signal with other technical indicators for confirmation before entering short. The next significant resistance level rests at the 38.2% Fibonacci retracement level at 1.3110. The next support level is found at last Wednesday's low of 1.2730.
The 2-month bullish correction has pushed the price above significant technical resistance levels, signaling a shift in the long term trend of the pair. The weekly chart shows the price broke the long term downward sloping trend line that began in July of 2008. The price has also moved above the 200-day simple moving average line. Traders will want to be long on the pair with the next resistance level coming in at 1.5520, April's high.
Last week the pair failed to break below the support level of 86.25. Momentum for the pair has reversed as the Momentum (10) is trending higher. The price is looking to break above the resistance at the 20-day simple moving average line. A breach above this line could take the pair to the resistance level at 89.15, close to the long term downward sloping trend line. The potential correction could lead to a good setup to enter short in the direction of the trend.
The Relative Strength Index on the 4-hour chart shows the pair in overbought territory, indicating a downward correction could take place. That being said, according to most other technical indicators, the pair is trading in neutral territory with no clear direction. Traders may want to take a take a wait and see approach today, as a clearer picture may present itself later.
The Wild Card
The Stochastic Slow on the 8-hour chart indicates that a bullish cross has formed, meaning a downward correction may occur today. This theory is supported by the Relative Strength Index on the 4-hour chart. Forex traders may want to go short in their positions for this pair today, as bearish movement will likely occur.