EUR/USD Forecast April 27-May 1 – Investors Brace for Sharp Drops in GDP, Retail Sales

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EUR/USD posted slight losses for a second successive week. The upcoming week features the ECB rate decision, eurozone GDP and German retail sales. Here is an outlook at the highlights and an updated technical analysis for EUR/USD. 
There was some positive news from Germany’s ZEW Economic Sentiment, which defied expectations and soared to 28.2, up from -49.5 points. The forecast stood at -40.0 points. The all-eurozone indicator showed a similar jump, climbing from -49.5 to 25.2. The estimate was -38.2 points. However, eurozone consumer confidence fell to -23, down from -12 points. PMI releases fell sharply in March, reflecting the lockdown of much of the economies of Germany and the eurozone due to Covid-19. German Manufacturing PMI fell to 34.4 and the all-eurozone PMI slowed to 33.6 points. The services sector looked event worse, as German Services PMI fell to 15.9 and the eurozone PMI slowed to 11.7, pointing to sharp contraction. Finally, German Ifo Business Climate slowed for a third successive month, falling to 74.3 points. This missed the forecast of 79.8 points.
In the U.S., unemployment claims continue to reflect the extent of the economic turmoil caused by Covid-19. Jobless claims dropped to 4.4 million, down from 5.5 million a week earlier. In the past five weeks, new claims have totaled a staggering 26 million, as the Covid-19 crisis has shut down much of the U.S. economy. There was more bad news from March durable goods orders, which plunged by 14.4%, its first decline in four months. The core reading declined by 0.2%, after a decline of 0.6%. The UoM Consumer Sentiment slumped to 71.8, down sharply from 89.1 a month earlier. Still, this beat the estimate of 67.8 points.

EUR/USD daily chart with support and resistance lines on it. Click to enlarge:

  1. German Preliminary CPI: Wednesday, All Day. Inflation remains very low in the eurozone’s number one economy. CPI came in at just 0.1% in the final reading for March, confirming the initial release. CPI is expected to dip to 0.0% in the upcoming release.
  2. Monetary Data: Wednesday, 8:00. M3 Money Supply accelerated to an annual growth rate of 7.5% in February, up from 5.5% a month earlier. Private Loans slowed to 3.4% y/y, down from 3.8%. We will now receive data for March. Money Supply is projected to climb to 7.8%, while Private Loans is expected to post a gain of 3.5 percent.
  3. French Flash GDP: Thursday, 5:30. The euro zone’s second-largest economy contracted by 0.1% in the fourth quarter. Economic conditions have deteriorated significantly due to the Covid-19 outbreak and analysts are bracing for a sharp decline of 4.0% in Q1 GDP.
  4. German Retail Sales: Thursday, 6:00.  Retail sales is closely watched, as it is the primary gauge of consumer spending, a key driver of the economy. In February, retail sales climbed 1.2%, good enough for a 3-month  high. This crushed the estimate of 0.1%. However, the March reading is expected to be dismal, with an estimate of -8.4 percent.
  5. Eurozone Flash GDP: Thursday, 9:00. The initial read of GDP tends to have the most significant impact, even though it does not include data from Germany. Back in Q4, the third read confirmed a growth rate of 0.1%. For Q1, the forecast stands at -3.7 percent.  A decline in this range could send the euro sharply lower. 
  6. Eurozone Inflation: Thursday, 9:00. CPI came in at 0.7% in the final March reading, as inflation remains well below the ECB target of around 2 percent. The forecast for the initial April reading stands at just 0.1%. The core reading showed a gain of 1.0% in March and the April forecast stands at 0.7 percent.
  7. ECB Rate Decision: Thursday, 11:45. The ECB is scrambling to deal with the turmoil in the financial markets due to the corona crisis. The bank has changed some rules in order to maintain banks’ access to its ultra-cheap liquidity. The ECB will also publish fresh forecasts for growth and inflation and may downgrade some of the data points.

EUR/USD Technical analysis

Technical lines from top to bottom:

We start with resistance at 1.1215, which has held since mid-January. 1.1119 is next.

1.1025 (mentioned last week) has some breathing room in resistance. The round number of 1.0900 is next.

1.0829 is an immediate resistance line.

The round number of 1.07 is next.

1.0620 is protecting the 1.06 level.

1.0500, which has held since January 2017, is the final support level for now.

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I remain bearish on EUR/USD

Economic numbers for March are expected to be dismal, reflecting deteriorating conditions due to the Covid-19 outbreak, which hit Europe in March. This does not bode well for the euro.

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About Author

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.

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