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Asia Pacific Market Wrap – NZ GDP, NZD/USD, AUD/USD, China Import Tax Cuts, GBP/USD

  • NZ GDP data and reports of Chinese import tax cuts highlighted quiet APAC trade
  • Asia Pacific stocks traded rather mixed. Anti-risk Yen cautiously gained with AUD
  • GBP/USD uptrend may reignite on Brexit progress at EU meeting press conference

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A better-than-expected New Zealand GDP reported overshadowed an otherwise relatively quiet Asia Pacific trading session heading into the end of this week. Economic growth topped estimates and cooled RBNZ rate cut bets, offering New Zealand Dollar prices a hefty lift. NZD/USD is now on pace to experience its largest weekly gain since February.

Not surprisingly, this weighed against the alternatively high-yielding Australian Dollar. This also meant that AUD/NZD is on pace for its worst performance in a single day since January, but the long trade is still in play as the pair remains above the rising trend line from April. Meanwhile the anti-risk Japanese Yen saw some cautious gains amidst performance in Japanese and Chinese benchmark stock indexes.

The Nikkei 225 gapped higher but then traded lower after intense gains over the past days opened the door to testing the highs seen back towards the beginning of this year. Meanwhile the Shanghai Composite headed about 0.12% lower as US and China head for implementing fresh tariffs on September 24th. The ASX 200 largely traded sideways. South Korea’s KOSPI rallied more than one percent.

As APAC trade headed into its conclusion for the day, reports crossed the wires that China is planning on broad import tax cuts as soon as October. This sparked a mild “risk on” trading dynamic as the Australian Dollar edged carefully higher.

Over the remainder of Thursday, the markets and the British Pound eye the press conference of the informal meeting of EU heads of state. Brexit talks will be taking place after GBP/USD came under pressure yesterday as Theresa May rejected EU Barnier’s offer on the Irish border. Signs that more progress are being made away from a “no deal” Brexit could reignite Sterling gains.

See our study on the history of trade wars to learn how it might influence financial markets!

GBP/USD Technical Analysis

The British Pound has paused gains against its US counterpart after a break above the descending range of resistance from May. More favorable Brexit news could reignite its upside momentum, further overturning the dominant downtrend from April – August. From here, near-term resistance is the 38.2% Fibonacci retracement at 1.3317 while support stands at 1.3067.

GBP/USD Daily Chart

GBP/USD Uptrend Eyes EU Meet, AUD Likes China Import Tax Cut Plan

Chart created in TradingView

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--- Written by Daniel Dubrovsky, Junior Currency Analyst for DailyFX.com

To contact Daniel, use the comments section below or @ddubrovskyFX on Twitter