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USD/CHF traded in a narrow range this past week, and closed almost unchanged, at  0.9060. The upcoming week is very  quiet, with only two releases. Here is an outlook for the Swiss events, and an updated technical analysis for USD/CHF.

The Swiss franc failed to make any gains against the dollar, despite some positive news  from the Swiss economy.  Both the Consumption Indicator and well-respected KOF Economic Indicator jumped in April. If Swiss indicators continue to show improvement, we could see the markets respond by giving a thumbs up to the Swiss franc.

Updates: USD/CHF continues to  move in a narrow range, trading just shy of the 0.91 level at 0.9098. The  one key  release  this week is Retail Sales,  which will be published on Wedndesday.  The Swiss franc continues to edge upwards, with USD/CHF trading at 0.9065. With a national holiday in Switzerland on May 1, we’ll have to wait Wednesday for two Swiss releases. PMI was a major disappointment, as the index dropped to a five-month low. The reading came in at 46.9 points, well below the forecast of 51.6 points. USD/CHF  climbed above the 0.91 level, and was trading at 0.9147, as the swissie sagged on weak Euro-zone employment data. Retail Sales will close the trading week on Friday. The markets are looking for positive news from the key indicator, with a forecast of 1.2%.

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

  1. Retail Sales: Wednesday, 7:15.  Retail Sales  disappointed the markets in April, posting a  reading of 0.8%. This was  well below the market forecast of 3.2.%.  The forecast for April  calls for an improved reading of 1.2%.  Will the indicator meet or beat the market prediction?
  2. SVME PMI: Wednesday, 7:30. This  index, which is based of  surveyed purchasing managers, posted a reading of 51.1 in April. This marked the second time in 2012 that it has crossed the 50.0 level, which indicates industry expansion. The market forecast for April  calls for a  higher reading of 53.6.

*All times are GMT

USD/CHF Technical Analysis

USD/CHF opened just shy of the 0.91 level, at 0.9097,  The pair reached a high of 0.9171, as the weak resistance line of 0.9204 (discussed last week) held firm. USD/CHF then gave up those gains, dropping to a low of 0.9051. The pair then recovered, and closed the week at 0.9060.

Technical lines from top to bottom:

We stert with a resistance line  just above the round number of 0.95, at 0.9510. This line  has remained intact since  January. Below, is the resistance line of 0.9412, which was last breached during a strong downward trend by the pair  in January.    Next is 0.9317, which is providing strong resistance to USD/CHF.

This is followed by 0.9250, which has not been tested since mid-March.  Close by, 0.9204, which  has been repeatedly tested in April,  is now providing  weak resistance.  Next is  0.9156, which, after providing weak support earlier in the month, is now  a line of weak  resistance.

This is followed by the round figure of 0.91. This important line has been tested in both directions recently, and the pair broke through this level on its downward swing this week. This weak line of resistance could fall if the dollar can muster a sustained drive against the franc.

Next, there is support at 0.9002, just above the psychologically  significant number of 0.90.  This is followed by the support level of 0.8924, which has not seen any activity since late February. Below, is the line of 0.8850, which has acted in a strong support role since last November. Next is the support level of 0.8768, which USD/CHF last tested in November 2011.

This is followed by 0.8710, which has served as a strong support level since October of last year. The final line for now is 0.8621, which has provided support dating back to September 2011.

I remain neutral on USD/CHF.

USD/CHF has been drifting in recent trading, unable to sustain a breakout in either direction. The swissie did not take  a cue from the euro, which showed some robust movement last week, particularly after the Fed announcment of no change in policy or rates.  We could well see more choppiness  from the pair, unless there  are some economic  releases out of either the US or Switzerland which catch the markets by surprise.

Further reading: