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A roller coaster week, with a 470 pips trading range ended with the Pound remaining almost unchanged. Purchasing managers’ indices and housing figures are due this week. Will the Pound decide where it’s going? Here’s a weekly outlook for 10 events that will move the Pound, and an updated technical analysis for GBP/USD.
GBP/USD chart with support and resistance lines marked on it. Click to enlarge:
The Pound suffered from a confirmation of the recession and also from the outbreak of the Dubai crisis. In addition to the PMI and HPI figures, speeches by MPC members will shake the Pound, a week before the rate decision. Let’s review the 10 events awaiting the Pound. The technical analysis will follow:
- Halifax HPI: The Halifax Bank of Scotland releases this important housing figure, based on its own prices, as it sees them through mortgages. The housing sector has suffered badly from the credit crunch but has shown growing prices in the past 4 months. The 1.2% rise that was reported last month is expected to be followed by 0.8% growth this time. The exact timing of the release isn’t known yet.
- GfK Consumer Confidence: The confidence of British consumers hasn’t fallen since January. The steady rise up to -13 last month, is expected to continue with a -11 score this time. Note that it is still in the negative zone. Published on Monday at midnight.
- Net Lending to Individuals: Borrowing money means more spending – good for the economy. In the past two months, net lending has grown by 0.7 billion each month. A positive figure of 0.8 billion is expected this time. Published on Monday at 9:30 GMT.
- Mortgage Approvals: Following last week’s BBA figure, this one is expected to rise from 56K to 59K this time. Published on Monday at 9:30 GMT, and overshadowed by the lending figure.
- Nationwide HPI: This important housing sector figure, was delayed from alst week, and is now scheduled for Tuesday at 7:00 GMT. The figure related to October, and is expected to rise by 0.4%, exactly like the previous month. This HPI shows better data than the one by Halifax: House prices have been on the rise for 6 months according to the Nationwide Building Society.
- Manufacturing PMI: Purchasing managers in the manufacturing sector are not sure where their sector is going. Last month’s 53.7 points score came after two months of a score under 50 – contraction expectations. Last month’s positive result is predicted to continue this time, with 54.1 points. Published on Tuesday at 9:30 GMT.
- Adam Posen talks: Posen is an external member of the Monetary Policy Committee. He will talk in a conference in London on Tuesday at 14:15 GMT. In his last public appearance, he warned of a double-dip recession and hurt the Pound. Will there be Pound-bearish hints?
- Spencer Dale talks: The Chief Economist of the BoE is another influential economist, but he tends to be more optimistic. He will talk on Wednesday at 8:20 GMT in a conference in Essex.
- Construction PMI: The last housing-related figure for this week comes from the construction sector. Purchasing managers in this sector have been expecting contraction for a very long time. The number has been improving in for some time, but then stalled. Last month’s 46.2 score is expected to be followed by a small rise to 46.9, still under the critical 50 mark.
- Services PMI: Purchasing mangers in this sector have shown more optimism: the index is above 50 for 6 consecutive months, surprising economists in most months this year. Services PMI is expected to edge up from 56.9 to 57.1 points this time, higher also than Tuesday’s Manufacturing PMI. Published on Thursday at 9:30 GMT.
GBP/USD Technical Analysis
The Pound began by moving higher, riding on dollar weakness. GBP/USD reached 1.6745 before it was pounded. It plunged sharply all the way to 1.6270 before recovering and ending the week at 1.6499, practically unchanged from last week.
Most of the lines haven’t changed from last week’s outlook. 1.65 continues to play a role, as the Pound closed two weeks in a row at this price. Looking down, 1.6260 has been tested this week, and its importance is now higher as the first support line.
Further down, 1.6110 was a resistance line when the Pound began the comeback, and is now a support line. Further down, 1.5720 works as major support. The Pound didn’t trade below this line since May, and it was tested in October.
Looking up, 1.6876 was the peak in November – a peak for two days in a row. Further above, 1.7042 was the year-to-date high, reached in August.
Still negative on the Pound
The revised GDP release, that confirmed that Britain is still in recession, lagging far behind other countries, confirms my bearish sentiment on the Pound.
- For a broad view of all the week’s major event in all currencies, read the forex weekly outlook.
- For the Euro, read the EUR USD Forecast.
- For GBP/USD, look into the British Pound forecast.
- For the Australian dollar, read the AUD/USD forecast.
- For USD/CAD, check out the Canadian dollar forecast.
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