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Dollar, Yen Vulnerable on Euro Zone and US Economic Data

By , Currency Strategist
15 May 2012 05:55 GMT

Talking Points

  • Risks Skewed to the Upside for Euro, Aussie Dollar on Q1 Eurozone GDP Data
  • S&P 500 Index Futures Point Higher, Threatening US Dollar and Japanese Yen
  • Soft US Inflation and Retail Sales Numbers May Stoke Fed QE3 Expectations

The roundup of preliminary Eurozone GDP figures are in focus, with the region-wide reading expected to show output shrank 0.2 percent in the three months through March. This would mark the second consecutive period of contraction, putting the currency bloc in a technical recession. With the average value of the Euro against its top counterparts at four-month lows and net-short positioning among small speculators at a record high according to data from the CFTC, volatility risk looks to be to upside, with positive surprises likely to spark a bout of profit-taking.

An upside surprise on European growth readings may also prove supportive for risk appetite at large considering the Eurozone recession represents the most significant headwind facing global output as a whole this year, boosting the likes of the Australian, Canadian and New Zealand Dollars while punishing go-to safe havens including the US Dollar and Japanese Yen. May’s German ZEW survey of investor may marginally cap any emerging exuberance with forecasts calling for the first drop in sentiment in six months, but a souring outlook would hardly surprise most given the tone of recent news-flow and so may not prove meaningfully market-moving.

On the sentiment front, S&P 500 stock index futures are pointing firmly higher to reinforce the likelihood of a risk-on mood (albeit on a short-term, corrective basis). The US economic data set may further gains in sentiment-linked assets as headline CPI figures show the annual inflation rate slowed to 2.3 percent in April while Retail Sales grew at the weakest pace in four months, fueling Fed QE3 expectations. The Empire Manufacturing gauge of New York State factory-sector activity may offer a minor countervailing force on this front, with economists expecting a shallow rebound in May after the gauge sank to a five-month low in April.

Asia Session: What Happened

GMT

CCY

EVENT

ACT

EXP

PREV

1:30

AUD

RBA May Meeting Minutes

-

-

-

1:30

AUD

New Motor Vehicle Sales (MoM) (APR)

-0.7%

-

4.1% (R+)

1:30

AUD

New Motor Vehicle Sales (YoY) (APR)

7.3%

-

4.0%

1:48

CNY

Actual FDI (YoY) (APR)

-0.7%

2.8%

-6.1%

3:00

NZD

Non Resident Bond Holdings (APR)

62.1%

-

60.9%

5:00

JPY

Consumer Confidence (APR)

40.0

40.8

40.3

Euro Session: What to Expect

GMT

CCY

EVENT

EXP

PREV

IMPACT

5:30

EUR

French CPI (MoM) (APR)

0.2%

0.8%

Low

5:30

EUR

French CPI (YoY) (APR)

2.2%

2.3%

Low

5:30

EUR

French GDP (QoQ) (1Q P)

0.0%

0.1%

Medium

5:30

EUR

French GDP (YoY) (1Q P)

0.5%

1.2%

Medium

6:00

EUR

German GDP w.d.a. (YoY) (1Q P)

0.8%

2.0%

High

6:00

EUR

German GDP n.s.a. (YoY) (1Q P)

0.9%

1.5%

High

6:00

EUR

German GDP s.a. (QoQ) (1Q P)

0.1%

-0.2%

High

6:45

EUR

French Non-Farm Payrolls QoQ (1Q P)

-0.2%

-0.1%

Low

6:45

EUR

French Wages (QoQ) (1Q P)

0.7%

0.3%

Low

8:00

EUR

Italian GDP s.a. and w.d.a. (QoQ) (1Q P)

-0.7%

-0.7%

Medium

8:00

EUR

Italian GDP s.a. and w.d.a. (YoY) (1Q P)

-1.2%

-0.4%

Medium

8:30

GBP

Visible Trade Balance (£)

-8400

-8772

Low

8:30

GBP

Trade Balance Non EU (£)

-4700

-5017

Low

8:30

GBP

Total Trade Balance (£)

-2900

-3396

Low

9:00

EUR

Portugal GDP n.s.a. (YoY) (1Q P)

-3.1%

-2.8%

Medium

9:00

EUR

Euro-Zone GDP s.a. (QoQ)

-0.2%

-0.3%

High

9:00

EUR

Euro-Zone GDP s.a. (YoY)

-0.2%

0.7%

High

9:00

EUR

Portugal GDP s.a. (QoQ) (1Q P)

-1.0%

-1.3%

Medium

9:00

EUR

German ZEW Survey (Current Situation) (MAY)

39.0

40.7

High

9:00

EUR

German ZEW Survey (Econ Sentiment) (MAY)

19.0

23.4

High

9:00

EUR

Euro-Zone ZEW Survey (Econ Sentiment) (MAY)

-

13.1

Medium

Critical Levels

CCY

SUPPORT

RESISTANCE

EURUSD

1.2794

1.2934

GBPUSD

1.6055

1.6126

--- Written by Ilya Spivak, Currency Strategist for Dailyfx.com

To contact Ilya, e-mail ispivak@dailyfx.com. Follow me on Twitter at @IlyaSpivak

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15 May 2012 05:55 GMT