GBP/USD reversed directions last week, gaining 140 points. The pair closed the week at 1.6636. This week’s highlights are the PMI releases. Here is an outlook for the main events moving the pound, and an updated technical analysis for GBP/USD.
US Unemployment Claims and GDP looked solid last week, but housing numbers failed to meet expectations. In the UK, CPI continues to lose ground but Retail Sales was very sharp and helped push the pound higher.Updates:
- Apr 4, 14:31: Non-Farm Payrolls +192K but good details – market undecided: A slight NFP disappointment: +192K in March. The unemployment rate stayed at 6.7%. There are significant upwards revisions and the...
- Apr 4, 3:12: Price stalls at range top and prints Indecision Candle: Looking at the GBPJPY market today which clearly is stuck in range bound conditions on the daily chart. We’ve seen...
- Apr 3, 16:00: ISM Non-Manufacturing PMI only 53.1 points but employment rebounds: A small disappointment for the US services sector: 53.1 points. The ISM Non-Manufacturing purchasing managers’ index was expected to climb...
- Apr 3, 11:27: Markets look to Draghi for clues of euro direction: The euro had been stubbornly rising throughout the past few days even in the face of lower inflation and GDP...
- Apr 3, 10:30: UK services PMI disappoints with 57.6 – GBP/USD falls: UK Services PMI drops to 57.6 in March, slightly below expectations. The UK services purchasing managers’ index by Markit was...
- Apr 2, 15:22: A major earthquake shook Chilean coastline: Despite Michael Lewis’s new book asserting the stock market is rigged due to rise of high frequency trading and the advantage...
- Apr 2, 14:15: ADP Non-Farm Payrolls +191K in March + big revision –: ADP NFP came out at 191K, within expectations. Automatic Data Processing was expected to report a solid job growth of...
- Apr 2, 10:30: UK Construction PMI 62.5 points – GBP/USD retreats from: The UK construction sector’s growth has not advanced as expected, scoring 62.5 points, actually lower than the previous month. Markit’s...
- Apr 2, 10:09: GBPUSD continues to hold 50-day SMA: Cable managed to pop higher and close above 50-day simple moving average during last week. GBPUSD dipped yesterday after disappointing...
- Apr 1, 11:26: Q2 commences with further Euro strength: As we commence Q2 of 2014 so far the year has not played out as expected. Indices have faltered near...
- Apr 1, 10:30: UK Manufacturing PMI slides to 55.3 in March – GBP/USD: MArkit’s manufacturing PMI disappointed with a drop to 55.3 points. The manufacturing purchasing managers’ index in the UK was expected...
- Apr 1, 10:00: 5 Most Predictable Currency Pairs – Q2 2014: A good currency pair will lose speed when approaching a clear line of resistance and support and then bounce back...
- Net Lending To Individuals: Monday, 8:30. This indicator is an important gauge of consumer spending, as borrowing by consumers usually translates into consumer spending. The January release came in at 2.1 billion pounds, short of the estimate of 2.5 billion. The estimate for the February release stands at 2.3 billion.
- BOE Governor Mark Carney Speaks: Monday, 17:15. Carney will speak at a Bank of England press conference in London . The markets will be looking for hints as to the BOE’s future monetary policy.
- Manufacturing PMI: Tuesday, 8:30. Manufacturing PMI has been fairly steady, with the February indicator coming in at 56.9 points, matching the forecast. The markets are not expecting much change in the upcoming release.
- Nationwide HPI: Wednesday, 6:00. This housing price index is an important gauge of activity in the housing sector as well as consumer confidence and spending. The previous release posted a 0.6% gain, matching the estimate. The estimate for the upcoming release is 0.7%.
- Construction PMI: Wednesday, 8:30. This index has looked strong, with four consecutive readings above the 60 point level, indicating strong expansion in the construction industry. The previous release came in at 62.6 points, short of the estimate of 63.3 points. The estimate for the March release stands at 63.1 points.
- 30-year Bond Auction: Wednesday, Tentative. The 30-year bond has been steady, with the previous yield coming in at 3.59%. Little change is expected in the upcoming release.
- BOE Deputy Governor Jon Cunliffe Speaks: Wednesday, 11:45. Cunliffe will speak at an event in Birmingham. A speech that is more hawkish than expected is bullish for the pound.
- Services PMI: Thursday, 8:30. Services PMI has been losing ground since October, although the readings remain at high levels. The previous release came in at 58.2 points, just above the forecast of 58.0 points. The estimate for the March release stands at 58.2 points.
- BOE Credit Conditions Survey: Thursday, 8:30. This report is released by the BOE on a quarterly basis. It is linked to spending in the private sector, as an increase in debt generally translates into more spending.
- Halifax HPI: Friday, 4th -8th. The index has moved up sharply in 2014 and posted a strong gain of 2.4% last month. The markets are expecting a smaller gain in February, with an estimate of 0.7%.
* All times are GMT
GBP/USD Technical Analysis
GBP/USD opened the week at 1.6494. The pair quickly touched a low of 1.6466, breaking below support at 1.6475 (discussed last week). GBP/USD then reversed directions and climbed to a high of 1.6651. GBP/USD closed the week at 1.6636.
Live chart of GBP/USD:
Technical lines from top to bottom
We begin with resistance at 1.7180, which has served in a resistance role since October 2008.
1.6990 is next. This line is protecting the key psychological level of 1.70.
1.6823 has remained intact since November 2009 and is a strong line of resistance.
1.6705 continues in a resistance role. This line has weakened following strong gains by the pound last week.
The round number of 1.6600 was breached last week and has reverted to a support line. It is a weak line and could see action early in the week.
1.6475 held firm and has some breathing room as GBP/USD trades above the 1.66. line.
1.6343 is the next support level. This line saw some activity in early February but has provided strong support since that time. The next support line is 1.6247.
1.6163 was a key resistance line in October and November 2012.
The round number of 1.60 is the final support level for now. This psychologically important level has remained firm since November.
I am neutral on GBP/USD.
GBP/USD reversed directions and posted strong gains, recovering the losses sustained a week earlier? Which British pound will show up this week? Much will depend on the PMI releases, which remain strong but have tapered off somewhat. In the US, the markets will be keeping a close eye on employment releases, highlighted by Nonfarm Payrolls.
- For a broad view of all the week’s major events worldwide, read the USD outlook.
- For EUR/USD, check out the Euro to Dollar forecast.
- For the Japanese yen, read the USD/JPY forecast.
- For the Australian dollar (Aussie), check out the AUD to USD forecast.