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The Pound lost another technical level and looks down. The upcoming week is very busy, with eight important events, with the rate decision being the climax. Here’s the weekly outlook for the British events, and an updated technical analysis for GBP/USD.

GBP/USD chart with support and resistance lines marked. Click to enlarge:

GBP/USD forecast

BOE governor Mervyn King is very dominant in the Pound’s trading. He wants and gets a weak Pound. He’ll have another opportunity this week, but also the numbers will speak. Let’s start:

  1. Halifax HPI: Publication time unknown at the moment. This is one of the more accurate reports out there, as it relies on the internal data that HBOS possesses. Prices of homes have risen in the past 7 months, but the rise is becoming slower. Last month’s 0.6% will probably be followed by a 0.3% rise this time.
  2. Manufacturing PMI: Published on Monday at 9:30 GMT. This important indicator of the economy surprised last month with a strong rise to 56.7 points, the highest in 3 years. A similar number is predicted this time, helping the Pound.
  3. Net Lending to Individuals: Published on Monday at 9:30 GMT.  More borrowing by customers means more spending and more economic activity. Lending has risen to 1.2 billion last month, the highest in 8 months. It’s now expected to drop back to 0.7 billion.
  4. Construction PMI: Published on Tuesday at 9:30 GMT. Contrary to the prices of homes and PMI in manufacturing, purchasing managers in the construction sector are still pessimistic. The figure is expected to edge up from 48.6 to 48.9 points, still under 50.
  5. Nationwide Consumer Confidence: Published on Wednesday at midnight GMT. Consumer confidence has gradually risen in the UK after the outbreak of the crisis. This survey of of 1000 consumers reached a peak of 73 points and is now predicted to drop back to 71, as jobs fell again.
  6. Services PMI: Published on Wednesday at 9:30 GMT. The last PMI release this week is an important one. The services sector, which includes the financial services sector, has seen improvement, rising above 56 points but then dropping to 54.5 last month. It’s predicted to edge up to 55 points, showing stability.
  7. Rate decision: Published on Thursday at 12:00 GMT. Mervyn King has at least one opportunity every week to weaken the Pound. This time it will be in the decision about the Official Bank Rate. Needless to say, it isn’t expected to move from 0.5% – same as last month. The focus will be on the MPC rate statement, which might hint about future policy, especially regarding the QE program, also known as the Asset Purchase Facility. The program ran out of 200 billion pounds allocated to it, and Mervyn King didn’t rule out an option to pump more money into it, weakening the Pound. Will it be renewed now? Probably not, but King may surprise us once again.
  8. PPI: Published on Friday at 9:30 GMT. Britain’s producer prices are expected to calm down after rising by 2% last month (PPI Input). Given the rise in consumer prices, the expected rise of 0.1% in the upcoming decision could be exceeded with a higher number. Also note the PPI Output figure, which is predicted to rise by 0.2%.

GBP/USD Technical Analysis

GBP/USD had a good start to the week, going above 1.5530, but this was only temporary. It later fell and made a break through 1.5350, bottomed out at 1.5150 and couldn’t get back over the important 1.5350 line.

So, 1.5350 provides an initial and strong resistance. The Pound failed to break this line a few weeks ago, and now it made. It’s also a historic line. Above that, 1.5530 is a minor line of resistance that served the Pound in recent weeks.

Note that some of the support and resistance line were modified from last week’s outlook.  Further above, 1.5770 is another minor resistance line, followed by 1.5833, which is already a strong line of resistance.

Looking down, 1.5150 provides immediate support, being the bottom this week. This is a minor line. Further below, 1.50 is already a very strong line. It’s a round number and also worked as a resistance line in the past.

If 1.50 is breached, the next line of support appears at 1.4770. A continued fast deterioration will send the Pound there. It’s unlikely to happen this week.

I continue the strong bearish sentiment on GBP/USD.

As long as Mervyn King heads the British central bank, the Pound will suffer, even if Britain is really out of recession. Also technically, the break of 1.5350 shows that the bears are in control.

Further reading:

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