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A very interesting rate decision expects us in Britain, with inflation becoming a threat. There are many more indicators in this busy week. Here’s an outlook for the British events, and an updated technical analysis for GBP/USD.

GBP/USD daily graph with support and resistance lines on it. Click to enlarge:

The pressure for a rate hike now comes from the inside as well, with Andrew Sentance voting for it last time. Will there be a rate hike? Or are the fears of a double dip recession limiting the chances? There are lots of other indicators on the way. Let’s start:

  1. Halifax HPI: Publication time unknown at the moment. This index is based on rather accurate data, as it’s based on internal data from HBOS. According to this indicator, an initial dip in prices seen 4 months ago was not accidental. Despite an immediate correction three months ago, prices disappointed with two consecutive months of drops. Last month’s drop of 0.4% will probably be followed by a similar dip.
  2. Services PMI: Published on Monday at 8:30 GMT. After last week’s manufacturing PMI, we’ll now hear news from the services sector. Although the score is below the high levels of 58 points, it has been stable and positive in recent months – around 55 points. A small drop is predicted now. Actual: 54.4.
  3. Manufacturing Production: Published on Tuesday at 8:30 GMT. This indicator always rocks the Pound. After two strong months, production dipped last month by 0.4%. A small correction is expected this time. Note that manufacturing is around 80% of industrial production, which is released at the same time but has less impact.
  4. Nationwide Consumer Confidence: Published on Tuesday at 23:00 GMT. This important barometer returns to its normal release time, a day and a half before the rate decision. After reaching a peak of 81 points, this survey of 1000 consumers fell gradually, and now stands at 65. Another drop is expected now.
  5. Rate decision: Published on Thursday at 11:00 GMT. Mervyn King is facing growing pressure for raising the rates. The new Prime Minister David Cameron has urged the central bank to tackle inflation. Also one of King’s colleagues, Andrew Sentance, voted for a rate hike last time. Nevertheless, King is expected to leave the Official Cash Rate unchanged once again at 0.5%. The wording of the MPC Rate Statement will be watched very carefully this time. Will they finally hint a rate hike?
  6. NIESR GDP Estimate: Published on Thursday at 14:00 GMT. This independent institute is usually more accurate in forecasting the GDP than other economists, and they also release their estimates on a monthly basis. According to NIESR, the British economy is growing in recent months, at a rate of about 0.6% per quarter. This release relates to the three months ending in June – the full second quarter. It will be very interesting to see if growth continues, or if the European problems hurt Britain as well.
  7. Trade Balance: Published on Friday at 8:30 GMT. After the deficit fell to 6.3 billion pounds, it rose above 7 billion and disappointed the Pound, which was especially hurt two months ago. A small deficit than 7.3 billion seen last month is expected now.
  8. PPI: Published on Friday at 8:30 GMT, together with the trade balance. While being more volatile than the CPI, producer prices have also exceeded expectations, showing that inflation is on the rise also here. Following last month’s drop of 0.6% in PPI Input (the main figure), a rise is expected now. Also PPI Output is expected to rise and boost the Pound.

GBP/USD Technical Analysis

The Pound began the week with a slip below 1.50 and bottomed out at 1.4870, a line that was added on last week’s outlook. From this bounce, the pair skyrocketed, passing 1.5130 and peaking out at 1.5230.

The pair is now struggling again with the pivotal 1.5130 that served as a strong support line when the Pound was trading higher. Above 1.5230, the next line is the previous pivotal line of 1.5350.

Higher, 1.5530 is a very strong resistance line which the pair didn’t break since February. Above this line, 1.5833 worked as a strong line of support and then switched its role.

Looking down, 1.5050 is still an important line, and it’s followed by 1.4870 which held the pair last week. Below, 1.4780 is a strong line of support, that worked in both directions.

1.4610 was the middle of the previous range and now works as a support line. 1.45 and 1.44 follow, but they’re far now.

I continue being neutral on the pair.

The rate decision could boost the Pound even higher, if there’s a hike, but the fragile state of the British economy still weighs on the pair.

Further reading:

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