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The Japanese yen  weakened early  in the week, but recovered, as USD/JPY closed the week almost unchanged. The upcoming week has  only five  releases.  Here is an outlook on the major market-movers and an updated technical analysis for USD/JPY.

In Japan, last week’s inflation numbers  point to slow improvement but are well below the government’s target of 2.0%.   In the US, Unemployment Claims and Pending House Sales were weak, but Advance GDP showed a strong gain.

Click to enlarge:   USD_JPY Forecast Feb. 3-7


  1. Monetary Base: Monday, 23:50. Monetary Base dropped in December to 46.6%, short of the estimate of 55.2%. No significant change is expected in the upcoming reading, as the Bank of Japan maintains its aggressive monetary policy. The estimate for the January release stands at 47.2%.
  2. 10-year Bond Auction: Tuesday, 3:45. The average yield on 10-year bonds continues to creep upwards, with the previous yield rising to 0.72%. No change is expected in the January release.
  3. Average Cash Earnings:  Wednesday, 1:30. This indicator is an important gauge of consumer spending. The indicator jumped to 0.5% last month, its biggest gain in almost a year. The markets are expecting the upward trend to continue, with the January estimate standing at 0.7%.
  4. 30-year Bond Auction: Thursday, 3:45.   The average yield on 30-year bonds has been quite steady, with a yield of 1.67% in December. No change is expected in the upcoming release.
  5. Leading Indicators: Friday, 5:00. Leading indicators is based on 11 economic indicators. Still, it is considered a minor event since most of the data has been previously released. The indicator has been steadily improving and reached 110.8% last month. Further improvement is expected in the January reading, with the estimate standing at 111.9%.

* All times are GMT.


USD/JPY Technical Analysis

USD/JPY started the week at 102.10. The pair  climbed to a high of 103.44  but then dropped all the way to 101.84, as support at 101.44 (discussed last week) remains intact. USD/JPY closed the week at 101.94.
Live chart of USD/JPY: [do action=”tradingviews” pair=”USDJPY” interval=”60″/]
Technical lines from top to bottom
We begin with resistance at 108.38. This line  has remained intact since September 2008. At that time, USD/JPY was in a downward spiral which saw it drop below the 0.90 level.

106.66 has  held firm since November 2008.   This is followed by resistance at 105.70 which continues to provide strong resistance.

104.65 has seen a lot of activity since late December, but didn’t see any activity last week.

The round number of 104 follows. This was a key line back in May 2008 and  continues in  an unfamiliar  resistance role.

102.50  was briefly breached as the  dollar  shot  higher before retracting sharply. It starts the week as a weak resistance line and  could  face pressure  early in the week.

101.44 was the post-crisis high seen in April 2009, and  is the first line of  support.

100.85 saw activity in July as the dollar showed strength against the yen. It is protecting the key level of 100.

The round number of 100 is  a key psychological level. It is providing USD/JPY with steady support.

98.80 has remained firm since early November, when the dollar began a rally which saw it climb above the 105 line.

The final support level for now is 97.75. This line marked the start of a dollar rally in October, which saw the pair break above the 105 line.


I am  bullish on USD/JPY

Last week, the  Federal Reserve  tapered  QE for a second time and this cut was an important vote of confidence in the US economy. The Bank of Japan  is  moving full steam ahead with  its current aggressive monetary program, which cost the yen close to 20% of its value in 2013.  If US releases enjoy a strong week, the dollar could climb to higher ground.