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American Retail Sales and British employment figures are the highlights of today, and there are many more indicators and events. Let’s see what’s up for today.

Japan’s central bank didn’t surprise anyone with the decision to leave the interest rate at 0.1%. Apart from leaving the Overnight Call Rate, they hinted in their Monetary Policy Statement and in the BOJ Press Conference that the economy is getting better. There were no hints about ending the emergency steps. USD/JPY trades lower after the decision, at 89.12.

In Australia, the Westpac Consumer Sentiment rose by 1.7% after a 5.2% rise last time. This helped AUD/USD push forward to 0.9139. RBA governonr Glenn Stevens will talk near the end of the day, and might shed more light on last week’s rate hike.  For more on the Aussie, read the AUD/USD Outlook.

In Britain, Claimant Count Change is a very early and important employment release. It’s expected to remain stable at 25.1K. Any surprise will move the GBP/USD, which has a made a fragile recovery, now trading at 1.5951.

At the same time, other employment figures, 45 day old, will be published: Average Earnings Index is expected to rise by 1.4%, and the Unemployment Rate is predicted to edge up from 7.9% to 8%.

More on the Pound at the GBP/USD Outlook.

In Europe, Industrial Production is predicted to rise by 0.9%, after falling 0.3% last time. EUR/USD now trades above previous peaks, at 1.4895. Casey Stubbs sees this as a break, and looks at 1.5000 as the next resistance. I think the break is somewhat hesitant.  More on the Euro in the EUR/USD Forecast.

In Canada, New Motor Vehicle Sales will be of interest to loonie traders. USD/CAD now trades at 1.0280, still on the race to parity. For more on the Canadian dollar, read the USD/CAD Forecast.

American Retail Sales are expected to turn around this month, and fall by 2% after a 2.7% jump last time. Core Retail Sales are predicted to be more stable, and post a 0.3% rise following the 1.1% jump last time. This major release will be felt across the board.

Also in the US, Import Prices are expected to rise by 0.3% while Business Inventories are predicted to drop by 0.8%. The Federal Budget Balance is expected to show a smaller deficit in the balance for a change.

A more important event is in the evening, when the FOMC Meeting Minutes will be released. We’ll hear what the central bankers think about unemployment, and future interest rate policy.

Near the end of the day, New Zealand will release its quarterly CPI. After rising 0.6% last quarter, a 0.8% rise is expected. NZD/USD is doing well, trading at 0.7413.

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