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The first forex trading session of 2009 began with a strengthening of the US dollar. The gains aren’t major.

In Europe, the Manufacturing PMI in Europe came out even lower than the low expectations, at 33.9, an extremely low figure for  the Manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index. The greenback gained ground against the Euro, EUR/USD currently at 1.395.

The same figure in Britain, was better than expected, at 34.9. The beaten British pound is still weak, with GPB/USD at 1.4515.  

The renewed downfall of the pound came due to the disastorous Halifax HPI which show a drop of 2.6%. This fall in the House Price Index is the root of the recession in the UK. Real estate has less real value…

The Swiss Franc hardly moved, USD/CHF now at 1.0636. The Japanese Yen weakened more significantly against the dollar: USD/JPY crossed the 91 mark, and is now at 91.18. 

Also commodity currencies lost ground to the dollar: CAD, AUD and NZD have weakened. WTI Crude trades now at $42.1 per barrel, with the Gaza war still looming over the middle east. An Israeli ground operation send oil prices back up, while a ceasefire would renew the fall of oil prices.

The last economic figure that remains for today is the ISM Manufacturing PMI due at 15:00 GMT. The numbers in the USA are expected to similar to those in the Euro zone and in Britain: 35.5.  A number that is far from expectations could shake the market, despite the low volume on this holiday week.

Next week, the holidays are over, and Forex trading will be with a high volume. 

Have a great weekend!

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