Home GBP/USD Outlook August 6-10

GBP/USD was down almost one cent last week, as the pair closed at 1.5632.  There are eight releases this week, including Manufacturing Production  and PPI Input.  Here is an outlook of the upcoming events, and an updated technical analysis for GBP/USD.

The pound weakened during the week, but made up for most of those losses following unexpected strong employment data out of the US. Economic releases out of the UK were mixed, and the BOE  made no changes to QE or the key interest rate.

Updates: Halifax HPI declined by 0.6%, the housing index’s first drop since May. BRC Retail Sales Monitor will be released later on Monday. The pound continues to fall, as GBP /USD was trading at 1.5550.  BRC Retail Sales Monitor dropped sharply, with a weak gain of  0.1%.  Manufacturing Production dropped 2.9%, but this was better than the market forecast of a 4% decline. This was the indicator’s worst reading in over three years. Industrial Production also fell sharply, posting a 2.5% decline. The market estimate stood at -3.3%.  The pound shrugged off the weak releases, and has pushed above the 1.56 line. GBP/USD was trading at 1.5624.  The monthly NIESR GDP Estimate declined 0.2%, identical to the July reading. The BOE quarterly inflation reported that GDP fell by 0.7% in Q2, and predicted an interest rate cut sometime in 2013. The pound continues to edge upwards against the dollar, as GBP/USD was trading at 1.5658. The Trade Balance deficit widened, disappointing the markets. The indicator posted a reading of GBP -10.1 billion, well above the estimate of -8.5B. The CB Leading Index  declined for the second month in a row, dropping 0.3%. The pound continued to lose ground, and was trading at 1.5631.

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

  1. Halifax HPI: Tentative. This housing indicator looked strong last month, climbing by 1.0%. However, the markets are forecasting a  decline of 0.4% for the August reading.
  2. BRC Retail Sales Monitor: Monday, 23:01. The indicator has climbed close to 1.5% in the past two readings, indicating healthy growth in the retail sales sector. Will the good news continue in August?
  3. Manufacturing Production: Tuesday, 8:30. This key indicator showed a respectable gain of 1.2% in July. However, the markets are bracing for a very weak August reading, with a forecast of a decline of 3.9%.
  4. NIESR GDP Estimate: Tuesday, 14:00. This indicator attempts to estimate the quarterly GDP release on a monthly basis. The previous reading was a weak -0.2%. The markets will be hoping for an August reading in positive territory.
  5. BOE Inflation Report: Wednesday, 9:30. The markets will be carefully analyzing this quarterly report, which focuses on the BOE’s forecast for inflation and economic growth in the UK over the next two years.
  6. Trade Balance: Thursday, 8:30. The Trade Balance deficit narrowed last month,  dropping to GBP -8.4 billion. A similar reading  is  forecast for  August.  
  7. CB Leading Index: Thursday, 9:00. The index disappointed in July, declining by 0.8%, its first drop below zero since February. Will the index bounce back into positive territory in August?
  8. PPI Input: Friday, 8:30. This manufacturing inflation index has been well below the zero line since April. However, the markets are forecasting a much stronger August, with an estimate of a 1.3% gain.

*All times are GMT

GBP/USD Technical Analysis

GBP/USD opened the week at 1.5726. After  touching the high  of 1.5732, GBP/USD fell to 1.5490, breaking through resistance at 1.5515 (discussed last week). The pair then retraced late in the week, closing at 1.5632.  

Technical levels from top to bottom

We  start with resistance at 1.6060. Below, is the line of 1.5992, protecting the important 1.60 level. This is followed by resistance at 1.5930. The next resistance line is just above the 1.58 line, at 1.5805. This line was last breached in late May, as the pound went on a sharp slide.

Close by is 1.5750, which saw action last week. It has now strengthened as the pair trades at lower levels. Next is 1.5648 which has been alternating between support and resistance roles. Currently, it is providing resistance to the pair.

GBP/USD is receiving weak support at the round figure of 1.5600. This line  looks to  be tested if the pound  weakens further. Next, there is support at 1.5521. Below, the pair is receiving support at 1.5415, which was last tested in mid-July.  This is followed by support at 1.5361, a line which has held firm since early June. Close by, there is strong support at 1.5309. This line has not been breached since September 2010.

The next support level is at 1.5229. This is followed by 1.5124, which has not been tested  since July 2010. Below, there is support at 1.5054, which was last breached in June 2010. The final support level for now is  just below the 1.49  line, at 1.4891.

I am bearish on GBP/USD.

GBP/USD exhibited  quite a bit of  volatility in July, and fell over two cents last week before recovering partially  at week’s end. The British economy is in deep trouble, and many investors will be drawn to the safety of the US dollar if the turmoil in Europe continues.

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.