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The Aussie couldn’t avoid the implications of the European debt crisis, but managed to stay relatively strong. The upcoming week consists of the important meeting minutes and other key events. Here is an outlook for these events, and an updated technical analysis for AUD/USD.

Australia’s housing sector is still live and kicking. Home loans continued their strong recovery and  defied  the talks about an Australian housing bubble. Australia also enjoyed continued strong growth in China.

AUD/USD chart with support and resistance lines on it. Click to enlarge:AUD USD Chart July 18 22 2011

  1. New Motor Vehicle Sales: Monday, 1:30. With Australia’s vast lands, sales of vehicles serve as a good gauge of the economy. The past two months have been somewhat worrying with a cumulative drop of almost 12%. A correction is expected this time.
  2. Monetary Policy Meeting Minutes: Tuesday, 1:30. The recent rate statement was quite dovish. The central bank expressed concerns and markets don’t see a rate hike this year anymore. The meeting minutes will shed some light on what policymakers at the RBA are thinking and what they plan to do with Australia’s high rates.
  3. MI Leading Index: Wednesday, 00:30. The Melbourne Institute provides a wide overview of the economy, using  9 different figures. While most of these numbers are already publicly available, the release shakes the Aussie. After a small rise of only 0.2% last month, a stronger gain is expected now.
  4. NAB Business Confidence: Thursday, 1:30.  National Bank Australia has a quarterly report which is based on interviews with a wide range of 1000 businesses. In the past 7 quarters, the numbers have been positive, scoring a healthy 11 points in Q1. The number for Q2 is likely to be weaker, but still positive.
  5. Chinese HSBC Manufacturing PMI: Thursday, 2:30. Australia’s main trade partner has been in the limelight for scary municipal debts and fears of a significant slowdown, fears that are only partially seen at the moment. This independent purchasing mangers index has touched the tipping point, scoring 50.1 points in May, hardly above the critical 50 point mark separating growth and contraction. A drop under 50 will weigh on the Aussie.
  6. Import Prices: Friday, 1:30. The prices of imported raw materials and goods impact inflation and interest rates. Q1 saw a rise of 1.4%,much higher than expected. A drop is likely now.

* All times are GMT

AUD/USD Technical Analysis

The Australian dollar didn’t have a good start to the week. It took a dive against the greenback and bounced off the 1.05 line (discussed last week), before taking the other direction and testing the top of the range.

Technical levels, from top to bottom:

The  float era high of 1.1012 is already a definite line of resistance, just above the round number of 1.10. Below, 1.0920 serves as minor resistance.

1.088 had a chance to work in both directions – capping the pair on the way up, and later temporary halting the pair on the way down. It was a swing high in May. A move on this line can happen if the next line is decisively broken.

1.0775 was a key resistance level in the past two weeks, serving as an excellent cap. This is the top border of a wider range..  1.0670 is now a somewhat weaker line after being battered just now. 1.0620 joins the graph after providing support twice during the past week.

1.0580 is the next line. It capped the pair for long days. Its role is minor now after being pierced through on the way down as well as on the way up.  The round number of 1.05 managed to cushion another fall, and remains of high importance..

1.0440 proved to be a very strong support line after being a swing low a month and also recently, although it is slightly weaker now.  1.0390 was a distinctive line that worked in both directions at the beginning of April and is weak support now.

A stepping stone for the Aussie on its way up was 1.0315.  It is likely to be a stepping stone on the way down if the pair collapses. An important cushion is 1.0254, the 2010 high that is still below, but getting closer.

I am bullish on AUD/USD.

The Australian economy continues to enjoy a booming job market, and also the feared housing bubble isn’t that close to a burst. Also Australia’s main trade partner, China, is showing less signs of a slowdown. At least for now. The risk for the Aussie comes from the European debt crisis.

Further reading: