US Dollar Dips against Euro, Yen after 1Q Current Account, May CPI
Inflation in the US remains relatively sticky, preventing Federal Reserve policymakers from taking any new action at next week’s Federal Open Market Committee, the Consumer Price Index for May revealed today. Headline consumer prices, having contracted by 0.3 percent in May on a monthly-basis, continue to remain decoupled from the core figure, which excludes the more volatile food and energy components. The core reading showed inflation at a 0.2 percent rate m/m. However, the yearly figure for the core reading is what suggests that the Fed will be unable to alter its monetary policy next week, considering it showed price pressures of 2.3 percent y/y, in line with April’s figure and a hair above the 2.2 percent estimate provided by Bloomberg News.
Also released during the 12:30 GMT data swell was Current Account data for the first quarter, which showed that the Current Account deficit increased by a whopping 15.7 percent from the fourth quarter. The balance came in at -$137.3 billion, well-below the -$118.7 billion figure from the fourth quarter and slightly higher than the median forecast of -$131.9 billion. The Current Account tracks the trade balance (exports and imports for goods and services), income payments (such as interest, dividends and salaries) and unilateral transfers (aid, taxes, and one-way gifts). Thus, the report acts as a line-item record of how the US economy interacts with the world economy. An increasing negative figure is generally perceived as negative for the US Dollar.
EURUSD 1-minute Chart: June 14, 2012
Charts Created using Marketscope – Prepared by Christopher Vecchio
In line with the data released, the US Dollar has fallen across the board, most notably against Gold, the Euro, and the Japanese Yen, in what is perhaps a sign that more quantitative easing is coming from the Federal Reserve. It is worth noting – and stressing – that despite the weaker inflation figures that suggest deflation may be reappearing in the US economy, the core readings that the Federal Reserve follows remain above their target of 2 percent; thus the decline in the US Dollar is nothing more than irrational exuberance.
The EURUSD rallied from 1.2556 prior to the release to 1.2583 (after peaking at 1.2588), at the time this report was written, while the USDJPY depreciated from 79.10 to as low as 79.16 (before rebounding back to 79.26). Gold was notably higher as well, rising to $1627.95/oz from $1621.45/oz ahead of the release.
--- Written by Christopher Vecchio, Currency Analyst
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