AUD/USD Outlook Feb. 20-24
AUD/USD Forecast, Minors

AUD/USD Outlook Feb. 20-24

The  Australian dollar  did  not show any  net movement  for the week,  closing just above 1.07 US.   The  upcoming week has  four releases.  Here is an outlook for the Australian events, and an updated technical analysis for AUD/USD.

The  Australian dollar  continues to hold its own against its US counterpart. The bright spot in the economy last month were the outstanding employment figures, with the employment change indicator posting its best reading in over two years.

Updates: The Chinese reduction of the RRR sent the Aussie above 1.08, but it then dropped and is close to closing the Sunday gap. It all depends now on the outcome of Greece’s D-day. It looks a bit worrying now. According to Elliott Wave Analysis, it might be time to go long on AUD/USD. The doubts about Greece weigh on the Aussie that couldn’t cheer up from the rise in the Wage Price Index (+1%) or the stronger  HSBC Flash Manufacturing PMI (49.7 points). The pair is around 1.0650. Ex PM Kevin Rudd poses a challenge on PM Gilliard. This political uncertainty hit the Aussie, which fell under 1.06 before recovering. Also the warning signs from China weigh on the Aussie.

AUD/USD graph with support and resistance lines on it. Click to enlarge:  

  1. RBA Gov Stevens Speaks:  Tuesday, 2:30. Analysts pay close attention whenever the head of the central bank delivers a speech, looking for clues regarding economic and monetary policy. A speech which is more hawkish than expected by the markets is bullish for the Australian dollar.
  2. CB Leading Index:  Tuesday,  23:00. This composite index is based on seven leading  indicators. The index contracted by 0.3% in January, its worst reading in almost two years. The markets are sure to take note if  the index drops again, and the aussie could lose some ground as a result.
  3. Wage Price Index:  Wednesday,00:30.  This  index  provides an important measure of consumer inflation. The index rose 0.8% in January, and the markets are forecasting a slight increase to 0.9%  for February.
  4. HSBC Chinese Flash Manufacturing PMI: Wednesday, 2:30. This  index is based on a survey of purchasing managers in the Chinese manufacturing sector. For the past several months, the index has been hovering slightly below the 50 level, signalling contraction in the manufacturing industry. No significant change is expected for the February reading.

AUD/USD  opened at 1.0709.It  dropped to a low of 1.0628, as the resistance  line of 1.0610 (discussed last week) held firm.  The  pair climbed as high as 1.0773, and closed the week unchanged at 1.0704.

Technical levels from top to bottom:

We begin with the resistance line of 1.1090, which was last tested in August of 2011. Next is 1.1009, just above the psychologically important level of 1.10. This  is  followed by strong resistance at 1.0884. The important level of 1.08 was breached earlier this month, and is providing weak resistance for now. Below, 1.0750 is being severely tested, and could fall on a further upswing by the pair. This is followed by 1.0650, which is a weak line of support.   Next is the support line of 1.0585, which was tested earlier this month. Below, is the round number of  1.05, which  served as support in May and  June and has now resumed that role. It is followed by the 1.0383 line, which  has acted as a support level since January.

The round number of 1.03 was severely  tested  in  January, but has now become a major support level as the aussie continues to stay strong against the US dollar. Next is the support line of 1.0250. This is  followed  by 1.02, a major support level. Below, 1.0080 is  providing support, protecting the all-important parity level.  Finally, strong support is seen at  the round number of  0.99.

I am  neutral  on AUD/USD.

Market uncertainty  over the  financial crisis in the  eurozone continues, even as the turmoil in Greece seems to be subsiding.  If the Australian can continue to post strong numbers this month as well, the Aussie could make further gains against the greenback.

Further reading:

Kenny Fisher

Kenny Fisher

Kenny Fisher - Senior Writer A native of Toronto, Canada, Kenneth worked for seven years in the marketing and trading departments at Bendix, a foreign exchange company in Toronto. Kenneth is also a lawyer, and has extensive experience as an editor and writer.