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FOREX: Franc and Yen Soar as Oil Surge Cripples Risk Appetite

FOREX: Franc and Yen Soar as Oil Surge Cripples Risk Appetite

2011-02-24 06:50:00
Ilya Spivak, Sr. Currency Strategist
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Overnight Headlines

Critical Levels

CCY

SUPPORT

RESISTANCE

EURUSD

1.3645

1.3813

GBPUSD

1.6064

1.6285

The Euro and the British Pound declined, down 0.3 and 0.4 percent against the US Dollar as the greenback edged higher on safety demand. The benchmark unit’s performance proved lackluster however as CHF and JPY captured the spotlight (see below).

Asia Session: What Happened

CCY

GMT

EVENT

ACT

EXP

PREV

AUD

23:00

Conference Board Leading Index (DEC)

0.7%

-

0.2% (R-)

AUD

0:30

Average Weekly Wages (YoY) (NOV)

3.9%

-

4.6% (R+)

AUD

0:30

Average Weekly Wages (QoQ) (NOV)

1.1%

-

0.6% (R+)

AUD

0:30

Private Capital Expenditure (4Q)

1.3%

2.3%

6.9% (R+)

The Japanese Yen and the Swiss Franc outperformed in overnight trade adding as much as 0.6 and 0.5 percent respectively against their major counterparts as turmoil in the Middle East (and its impact on oil prices) continued to weigh on sentiment. The MSCI Asia Pacific regional benchmark index fell 0.6 percent The Yen advanced as the broad exodus from risky assets spurred an unwinding of carry trades funded cheaply in the perennially low-yielding currency, while the Franc capitalized on Switzerland’s record of geopolitical neutrality. The US Dollar underperformed as the exodus from risky assets drove US Treasuries higher, weighing on yields for benchmark Dollar-denominated assets.

Euro Session: What to Expect

CCY

GMT

EVENT

EXP

PREV

IMPACT

EUR

7:00

German Gross Domestic Product (QoQ)

0.4%

0.4%

Medium

EUR

7:00

German Gross Domestic Product (YoY)

4.0%

4.0%

Medium

EUR

7:00

German Domestic Demand (4Q F)

0.2%

0.4%

Low

EUR

7:00

German Private Consumption (4Q F)

0.2%

0.4%

Low

EUR

7:00

German Capital Investment (4Q F)

2.0%

1.3%

Low

EUR

7:00

German Government Spending (4Q F)

0.2%

1.1%

Low

EUR

7:00

German Exports (4Q F)

1.1%

2.3%

Low

EUR

7:00

German Imports (4Q F)

0.6%

1.9%

Low

EUR

7:00

German Construction Investment (4Q F)

-2.0%

-0.4%

Low

EUR

7:45

French Consumer Confidence Indicator (FEB)

85

85

Low

CHF

8:15

Employment Level (4Q)

4.086M

4.080M

Low

CHF

8:15

Employment Level (YoY) (4Q)

1.2%

1.0%

Low

EUR

9:00

Italian Retail Sales s.a. (MoM) (DEC)

0.2%

-0.3%

Low

EUR

9:00

Italian Retail Sales (YoY) (DEC)

1.2%

1.0%

Low

EUR

10:00

Euro-Zone Business Climate Indicator (FEB)

1.61

1.58

Low

EUR

10:00

Euro-Zone Consumer Confidence (FEB)

-10.0

-11.2

Medium

EUR

10:00

Euro-Zone Economic Confidence (FEB)

106.8

106.5

Low

EUR

10:00

Euro-Zone Industrial Confidence (FEB)

6.5

6

Low

EUR

10:00

Euro-Zone Services Confidence (FEB)

9.5

9.2

Low

EUR

10:00

Italian Business Confidence (FEB)

103.8

103.6

Low

GBP

11:00

CBI Reported Sales (FEB)

28

37

Low

A broad-based exodus from risky assets remains the driving theme behind price action across the investment spectrum, with major European bourses set to fall for the fourth day as turmoil in the Middle East continues to boost oil prices, threatening the global recovery. Stock index futures tracking major European and US exchanges are tracking sharply lower in late Asian trade. WTI and Brent crude continued to press higher, with the former soaring to a three-year high while the latter hit levels unseen since September 2008. European Union officials will hold a press conference on the region’s official response to the Libyan fiasco at 9:00 GMT that may warrant attention.

The outcome of a general election in Ireland is likely to prove a non-event considering its limited impact on bailout arrangements with the EU-friendly Fine Gael party expected to come out on top. A quiet European data docket is likely to mean that scheduled event risk won’t come into the picture until late into the session as US Durable Goods Orders and New Home Sales figures cross the wires while influential Federal Reserve policymaker James Bullard speaks on the monetary policy outlook for 2011.

For real time news and analysis, please visit http://www.dailyfx.com/real_time_news

To receive future articles by email, please contact Ilya at ispivak@dailyfx.com

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