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Despite USD Slide and Risk Shake, USDJPY Holds 100 and Oil Climbs

Despite USD Slide and Risk Shake, USDJPY Holds 100 and Oil Climbs

2016-08-19 02:18:00
John Kicklighter, Chief Strategist
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Talking Points:

  • The Dollar extended its drop through Thursday despite another round of Fed commentary attempting to revive hawks
  • Another slide in the S&P 500 and risk fails to gain traction as market languor confounds speculators
  • Oil extends a remarkable six-day run despite dubious fundamentals and general quiet, drags USD/CAD with it

See how retail traders are positioning in the majors using the SSI readings on DailyFX's sentiment page.

Unfulfilled threats - that is what we keep running into with these markets. The S&P 500 made a threat to turn the tide on risk trends this week with a wedge break from the high perch of record highs. Momentum would never materialize in the move, however, and other risk oriented assets have returned to their low-volume grind higher. Conviction continues to elude us - bullish or bearish - and it will likely remain that way until the market ranks fill out. Through the final trading day this week, there is little scheduled event risk that would seem to tempt traders in for a strong push before the weekend. Looking a little further out though; seasonal change, fundamental motivation and speculative pressure take a more ominous position.

Where there seemed little serious concern about a turn in risk trends, hesitation for USD/JPY strikes a very different tone. The pair's parity (100) level continues to hold, but that seems to generate more speculation and attention. The clash between failing conviction in monetary policy meets the potential for desperate maneuvers for the Japanese authority; and traders are unsure how such a skirmish would play out. This pair stands at the center of many fundamental avenues - monetary policy, risk trends, currency manipulation, technical influence, market depth - and should thereby be near the top of our 'watch list'.

With the final day of trade ahead, the docket doesn't offer up any noteworthy fundamental sparks. That works with the general quiet across the markets to reinforce technical boundaries. Pairs like USD/JPY, AUD/USD, NZD/USD, USD/CAD and USD/CHF stand at their respective boundaries. For USD/CAD, there is motivation in the form of US Oil which has advanced for a robust six consecutive sessions for a cumulative 16 percent climb. Defying its own fundamental conditions, further advance can generate collateral. We look at market conditions versus primed pairs in today's Trading Video.

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