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Forex today witnessed some volatile moves in the Swiss Franc in thin early Asian trading, with the USD/CHF pair having rallied hard nearly 1 big figure to test the 1.01 handle before reversing the entire spike to revert to parity. No major catalyst was seen behind the upsurge, except for the stops triggering on a breach of the 1.0030 strong upside barrier. The safe-haven Swiss Franc managed to regain the lost ground amid risk-off action in the Asian equities while the US dollar saw another leg higher and refreshed six-week tops at 96.71 vs. its main peers, as markets flocked to safety heading into the US-China trade talks scheduled later this week.

Among the Asia-pac currencies, the Antipodeans bounced on the back of a firmer re-open to the Chinese markets and record Chinese iron-ore futures. However, the upside lacked follow-through amid broad-based US dollar strength, leaving the Aussie struggling around 0.7100 levels. The USD/JPY pair attempted another run to test the 110 supply zone, but sellers continued to lurk amid a cautious market environment. Meanwhile, gold prices on Comex traded modestly flat near 1315 levels, despite global growth and trade worries. Both crude benchmarks slipped nearly 1% on bearish US drilling activity report.  

Main Topics in Asia

UK PM May rejects Brexit customs union compromise

WTI Technical Analysis: $51.65 gains market attention

China Press: GDP to pull back to 6.3% in 2019

PBOC sets Yuan reference rate at 6.7495

China’s Lunar New Year sales hit record low – Nikkei Asian Review

US delegation arrives in Beijing today ahead of US-China trade talks on Feb 14th and 15th

UK signs post-Brexit trade continuity deal with Switzerland – Bloomberg

Gold steadies above $1310 on global growth concerns

Study: Brexit referendum spurs UK companies into investing in EU – Reuters

Aussie pops in sync with iron-ore futures, as Chinese traders return

HIBOR rate hits lowest since June 2017 – Reuters

Asian stocks remain on back foot amid risk aversion

Key Focus Ahead

The EUR calendar kicks-off the week this Monday on an eventful note, with a flurry of significant macro releases due on the cards at 0930 GMT from the UK docket. The main focus is likely to be on the fourth quarter UK GDP release and the manufacturing production figures that will be parallelly released with the trade and monthly GDP figures. However, there is nothing of note from the Euroland. The Swiss CPI report for January, due at 0730 GMT, could draw some attention, in light of the recent CHF moves.

In the NA session, the Canadian trade data will be reported at 1330 GMT amid a lack of macro news from the US calendar, as the risk trends will continue to drive the market sentiment in the day ahead.

EUR/USD: January lows exposed on falling German yields and bearish close below 200-week MA

The  EUR/USD  pair could extend its five-day losing streak with a drop to the January low of 1.1289, courtesy of falling German bond yields and a bearish weekly close.  

GBP/USD: Bears in control amid Brexit drama, focus shifts to UK GDP

Next on investors’ radar is the fourth quarter UK GDP growth whereas developments concerning Brexit can continue playing background music to the moves. With the Brexit clock ticking faster without any strong developments, weak fundamental at home could open further downside for the GBP/USD pair.

Brexit Trifecta: May Rejects Corbyn’s Customs Union Offer, What’s Next?

The biggest fear for the Tories was a new election. May’s gambit remains what it has always been, to play on the fears of both sides such that they would support her silly deal.

GBP/USD Weekly Forecast: Sterling has room to move lower as another Brexit fail nears

The UK economy is expected to report on the manufacturing, the fourth quarter GDP and the January inflation during the upcoming week with all figures painting the same picture of the general economic slowdown.

Will the US and China finally share their toys?

On the data front, we have a packed calendar this week. China is back from Lunar New Year and releases new loans today, which will be closely monitored for any slowdown signals.