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Majors, US Dollar Forecast

Forex Weekly Outlook March 21-25

The US dollar was beaten by a very dovish Federal Reserve. Will it continue the downfall?  Inflation data from the UK, US durable goods orders and GDP data stand out. These are the main events on forex calendar. Here is an outlook on the market-movers of this week.

TheFOMC left its benchmark rate unchanged  in a range of 0.25% to 0.50%, in line with market forecast.  The Fed announced it intends to raise rates only twice this year and lowered its  economic outlook. Nevertheless Fed Chair Yellen said it is better to raise rates quickly if the economy expands  than to wait and cut rates when the economy begins to falter. Yellen also noted that the Fed is not considering negative interest rates and financial conditions have stabilized after the weak start of 2016.Will the growth trend continue?  Let’s start,

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  1. German Ifo Business Climate: Tuesday, 9:00. German manufacturers’ sentiment declined in February to 105.7 from 107.3 posted in the previous month. The fall projects the effects of the slowdown in emerging countries on the German economy. The majority of responders were negative about future business outlook especially in the manufacturing sector. German business climate is expected to rise to 106.1 this time.
  2. UK Inflation data: Tuesday, 9:30. Inflation  soared up to its highest rate for a year in January amid rises in the price of alcohol and clothing. Consumer prices edged up 0.3% from 0.2% in December, in line with market forecast. However, despite the rise, the Bank of England expects inflation to remain subdued below the government’s 2% target. Weak oil prices limit inflation pressures,  leaving the UK central bank in no hurry to raise rates above 0.5%. The bank forecasted a 0.5% inflation rate by the summer, however economists expect lower inflation this year. Analysts forecast CPI will grow 0.4% in February.
  3. Eurozone German ZEW Economic Sentiment: Tuesday, 10:00. German Investor sentiment took a nosedive in February, reaching the lowest level since October 2014, amid global slowdown and growing uncertainty around the continuous fall of oil prices. ZEW economic institute German investor confidence posted 1.0 points following 10.2 in the previous month. Economists expected an even worse reading of 0.1. However, despite the decline in oil prices, the central bank noted that cheap energy contributes to domestic economic activity. German investor sentiment is expected to reach 6.3 in March.
  4. US Crude Oil Inventories: Wednesday, 14:30. U.S. crude oil stocks increased last week to record highs for a fifth continuous week as gasoline inventories declined amid strong demand. Inventories increased 1.3 million barrels considerably lower than the 3.4 million-barrel increase expected by analysts. Gasoline demand over the past four weeks was up 6.4% from a year ago at 9.4 million barrels per day.
  5. US Durable Goods Orders: Thursday, 12:30. U.S. orders for long-lasting goods leaped 4.9% in January posting the biggest gain in 10 months, despite softer business investment. The reading followed a revised 4.6% contraction in the prior month. Economists believe the rise is not a temporary incident but an ongoing trend. Analysts expected a smaller rise of 3.0%. Orders rose across the board; Airplane orders edged up 11.5%, orders for new cars and trucks climbed 3%. Core orders, excluding transportation increased 1.8%, far better than the 0.2% expected by analysts.
  6. US Unemployment Claims: Thursday, 12:30. The number of Americans filling initial applications for unemployment benefits increased by 7,000 to 265,000 last week.  The reading was broadly in line with market forecast. This week’s release posts the 54th straight week where claims are below 300,000, indicating a robust employment market. The four-week moving average increased by 750 to 268,000.
  7. US GDP data: Friday, 12:30. The  US economy  expanded at a slower pace than initially forecasted in the third quarter of 2015 rising 2.0%. The Fed does not expect much improvement in 2016, estimating growth of 2.1% to 2.4%. The main cause for the slowdown is attributed to reduction of inventory stocks. The Fed forecasts the economy will expand with solid job gain and accelerating wage growth.

That’s it for the major events this week. Stay tuned for coverage on specific currencies

*All times are GMT.

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Anat Dror

Anat Dror

Anat Dror Senior Writer I conceptualize, design and create multi-lingual websites. Apart from the technical work, my projects usually consist of writing content for these sites in English, French and Hebrew. In the past, I have built, managed and marketed an e-learning center for language studies, including moderating a live community of students. I've also worked as a community organizer