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Euro dollar has moved upwards  above the 1.33 line, but has encountered some resistance.  Will it break higher or retreat? Eurozone Unemployment nudged up to 10.8%, keeping with market expectations. The key event today is the FOMC Meeting Minutes, which is a detailed record of the FOMC’s most recent meeting.  

Here’s an update on technicals, fundamentals and what’s going on in the markets.

EUR/USD Technicals

  • Asian session:  EUR/USD consolidated above 1.3330. The pair is holding steady in the European session.
  • Current range: 1.33 to 1.3360.      
  • Further levels in both directions: Below: 1.3212, 1.3080, 1.30,1.2945, 1.2873 and 1.2760.
  • Above: 1.3437, 1.3486, 1.3550 and 1.3615.
  • 1.3320 has held firm  on the downside, as  EUR/USD is  testing  1.3380.

Euro/Dollar is slightly higher, shrugging off weak Euro-zone employment figures – click on the graph to enlarge.

EUR/USD Fundamentals

  • 9:00 Euro-zone GDP. Exp. -0.3%. Actual -0.3%.
  • 9:00 Euro-zone PPI. Exp. 0.5%. Actual +0.6%.
  • 14:00 US Factory Orders. Exp. 1.5%.
  • All Day:  Total Vehicle Sales. Exp. 14.6M.
  • 18:00 FOMC Meeting Minutes.
  • 20:05 FOMC Member Williams Speaks.

For more events later in the week, see the Euro to dollar forecast

EUR/USD Sentiment

  • China slowdown easing?: The markets cheered the Chinese Manufacturing PMI figures, which climbed to an 11-month high of 53.1, above market forecasts. Further strong data out if China would raise hopes about renewed activity in the Asian giant’s economy.
  • European Recession Concerns: The euro strengthened after euro zone finance ministers agreed to strengthen the region’s debt firewall on Friday, but concerns remained over whether the measures would be enough to prevent contagion to other Euro-zone economies, notably Spain.
  • Spanish worries: Citigroup chief economist said that the chance of a Spanish default is now higher. This joins the persistent rise in Spanish yields. Europe remains very fragile.
  • The continuing retreat in European manufacturing. All of the major European economies recorded a PMI reading of below 50 last month. In France, for example, the final reading for March was revised down very sharply from an already very weak preliminary figure. In contrast, in the US,  PMI figures have been comfortably above 50, despite weak global demand.
  • FOMC Split: The FOMC left policy unchanged, as expected. The statement included an acknowledgement of higher oil prices and a more upbeat wording regarding employment, such as “the unemployment rate has declined notably”. Indeed, fresh jobless claims figures dropped to a four year low. What’s next? Several FOMC members have spoke lately and each one has his own message. Some want to exit soon, while others are still considering QE3. Bernanke leans towards the dovish camp, but the prospects of QE3 still remain low. The markets will look for some direction from the FOMC Meeting Minutes, which may contain hints as to future monetary policy. This will be followed by a speech by FOMC Member John Williams.