The Pound finished the week lower. The upcoming week consists of the final GDP and 8 other moving events for the Pound. Here’s an outlook for the British events and an updated technical analysis for GBP/USD, as the Pound is closer to cliff.
GBP/USD chart with support and resistance lines marked. Click to enlarge:
Alistair Darling was this week’s star – his budget release contained no new hope for the currency. Also weaker inflation weighed on the Pound. OK, let’s look towards the next week. The technical analysis will follow:
- Halifax HPI: Publication time unknown at the moment. This isn’t the UK’s earliest home price report. Nevertheless, it’s a highly regarded one, since its based on the internal figures that HBOS holds – a very wide survey. After 7 months of rises, this index fell by 1.5%, disappointing the markets. A smaller drop is expected this time.
- Net Lending to Individuals: Published on Monday at 8:30 GMT. Credit used by the consumers is a good gauge of economic activity. This has risen from 1.5 to 2 billion last month, showing that consumers are willing to spend more. A drop to 1.8 billion is predicted this time.
- Spencer Dale talks: Starts speaking on Monday at 16:45 GMT. As the chief economist of the BOE, Dale has an influence on the central bank’s decisions and his opinion about the economy can move the markets. Speaking in Surrey, Dale might follow his boss Mervyn King by pushing the Pound lower.
- Nationwide HPI: Published on Tuesday at 7:00 GMT. This house price index showed the same trend as the one produced by Halifax – a sudden drop in prices after a long period of rises. The 1% drop is expected to be followed with a 0.2% rise.
- Final GDP: Published on Tuesday at 8:30 GMT. There were many doubts about the British growth in Q4. While politicians were celebrating the end of British recession, a deeper dive into the numbers showed that the real reason for growth in Q4 was a downwards revision of data in Q3. Anyway, this 0.3% growth rate will probably be confirmed in the final release.
- Current Account: Published on Tuesday at 8:30 GMT and overshadowed by the GDP, although it’s a quarterly figure. Britain saw a nice drop in its deficit in the previous quarter – 4.7 billion – the lowest figure in many years. Also in Q4 of 2009, the deficit is expected to remain relatively low – 4.6 billion.
- GfK Consumer Confidence: Published on Tuesday at 23:00 GMT (midnight of Wednesday in the UK). This Consumer Confidence Barometer has been negative for many years, indicating pessimism among its 2,000 surveyed consumers. After advancing to -13, the number retreated and now stands on -14. A return to -13 is expected now.
- Manufacturing PMI: Published on Thursday at 8:30 GMT. Britain’s manufacturing sector is doing quite well. In the past 5 months, it has been above the critical 50 point mark, indicating economic expansion. It’s now predicted to edge up from 56.6 to 56.8 points. This is a big market mover for the Pound.
- BOE Credit Conditions Survey: Published on Thursday at 8:30 GMT and overshadowed by the PMI. This quarterly report gives a look into the financial system which has suffered badly during the crisis. A better report should support the Pound.
GBP/USD Technical Analysis
The Pound began the week with a rise above 1.51, but from there it was all downhill. GBP/USD dropped in waves and bottomed at 1.4798, just 18 pips above the all-important support line of 1.4780.
The support and resistance liens have slightly changed since last week’s outlook. 1.4780 is the year-to-date low and also worked as a resistance line back in the spring of 2009 – this is a strong support line. On the other side of the range, 1.5110 provides a minor resistance line, being the past week’s high.
Looking up, 1.5350 is already a major resistance line. It supported the pair for some time, and the break of this started the big collapse. The lines above belong to the previous range – 1.5520 is a minor resistance line, and 1.5833 is a strong and far resistance line.
Looking down, the next line of support under 1.4780 is only at 1.44, an important line that worked as a support line at the beginning of 2009 and also a few months later. Even lower, 1.4130 is the next significant line.
I remain bearish on GBP/USD.
The British economy is still struggling, a credit downgrade is looming and the uncertainty around the elections (as seen in the budget) are all weighing on the Pound. Will it follow the Euro and lose the important line of 1.4780?
- 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 the Australian dollar, read the AUD/USD forecast.
- For USD/CAD, check out the Canadian dollar forecast.