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Slow Markets Prevent Fresh Breakouts, Stall Trends

Slow Markets Prevent Fresh Breakouts, Stall Trends

2010-07-05 19:11:00
John Kicklighter, Chief Currency Strategist
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As expected, we had a relatively quiet start to the week. The absence of US-based liquidity has encouraged those in the Western hemisphere, as well as Europeans and Asians, to hold off from placing any risky positions until they can tell how things will develop when the ranks fill out. To start the week, we have had a few fundamental catalysts here and there; but nothing especially remarkable. Therefore, I have decided not to take any new positions until conditions are a little clearer. That being said, we have plenty on our plate to consider for possible short-term volatility spurts - long-term trends will probably be developed through risk appetite channels; and that has recently been the product of factors that are not defined by the economic calendar or other scheduled releases. One indicator that could force a long-term technical setup on a pair that is not dependent on sentiment trends is the RBA rate decision for AUDNZD. The tentative break below 1.2200/150 from last week stands as a glaring threat of a new bear trend. However, we need to see certain follow through with a confirmed close below 1.2150 (perhaps even 1.21) and the conviction of a bear trend to really be confident. Other potential setups are dependent on risk appetite trends. CADJPY has threatened to end a long-term head-and-shoulders pattern with a neckline break around 82/81.50; but we need to see a close below this collective level along with momentum to have any certainty on a short. A short will have to come through risk aversion. On the other side of the coin, we have CHFJPY tentatively breaking higher; but here we don't have a clear gauge of whose the better safe haven currency. We'll have to wait to see how direction and trend develop here. Other potential short-term setups can be found in a long above USDCAD's triple top at 1.0680, a reversal on EURUSD below 1.25 or short-term trend channel break for USDJPY; but these are very short-term and not well suited to current market conditions (i.e. liquidity). As for my existing positions, my EURGBP short is under pressure again with discouraging UK data this morning. With a stop on my whole position at 0.8310, I could be stopped out; but my first entry level means the overall position will finish in the green. As for my short AUDCHF, I have exposure to the upcoming RBA; but perhaps the remaining half of this profitable position will benefit from this. Other positions that have stopped in their tracks are my long GBPUSD and GBPNZD positions. The former has pulled back to 1.5125; which my stop is placed not far below. GBPNZD has a cut point set much closer to its breakout point near 2.17. As for USDJPY, I am still long in a small size and will build it up as bullish progress is made. I further see potential in the short-term descending trend over the past few weeks and am waiting to see a possible bullish break above 88.

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