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Forex:  Trading on the Forex market was relatively calm as it seems all markets participants have turned their attention to this Friday’s Non-farm payrolls and unemployment data from the US. Expectations bet for at least 200K new jobs opening in March while the unemployment rate is forecasted to fall to 6.6%.

Several currency pairs stood out last week, including the  GBP/USD, which rose by 150 pips, after reports for a continuing slowdown of the inflation in the UK. Another currency pair with a significant chart movement was the  AUD/USD, which increased to a four-month high, closing at 166 pips higher on Friday. The reason for the Aussie’s positive movement proved to be a surprising growth of domestic consumption.

Indices

European indices reported one of their most profitable weeks since the start of the year, after data from the European commission revealed that the business activity in the area has increased more than expected in March. The upbeat news for an accelerated recovery in the Eurozone led to the appreciation of Germany’s DAX30 by just over 3%; France’s CAC40 was up 2.34%, and Italy’s S&P/MIBâ„¢, 2.56%.

Wall Street, on the other hand, closed the week with mixed results, as the bearish sentiment certainly held the dominant role. The Dow was the only benchmark to end the week on positive territory, albeit rising by the modest 0.09%, while the S&P500 fell by 0.46%, while the Nasdaq100 had one of its worst weeks in the past two years, and closed with a decline by 2.09%.

The mood on the Asian stock-market front was more cheerful as they ended the week with gains. Major role for the positive sentiment played the signals from China regarding a mitigation of the monetary policy and a liberalisation of the yuan. Japan’s Nikkei225 closed at 14,750 points, or an increase by 3.19%, in the last five days.

Commodities

Both gold and silver were under pressure for a second consecutive week amid continuing planned reduction of the Fed’s quantitative easing and signs of revival in the emerging markets. The yellow metal lost another 3% of its value to end at $1295 per troy ounce, which is its lowest level in the last four months, while silver declined by 2.38% to close at $19.82 per troy ounce on Friday.

What to expect this week?

Today has already revealed Germany’s Retail sales, which reported better-than-expected results of a 2% increase YoY and 1.3% rise MoM. Other data revealed disappointing results by the Eurozone’s Preliminary Consumer Price Index, which came at 0.5% YoY. The rest of the day will also see the Fed’s Janet Yellen speech. Tuesday’s highlights on the economic calendar will include: China’s Manufacturing PMI, released by the China Federation of Logistics and Purchasing, the Reserve Bank of Australia Interest Rate decision, Germany’s unemployment rate for March, and the US Manufacturing PMI released by the Institute for Supply Management. Wednesday will draw attention to the Eurozone GDP (QoQ and YoY), the US ADP Employment change for March, and also Factory orders for February. Thursday will have a lot on its plate, starring Australia’s Trade Balance for February, China’s Non-manufacturing PMI for March, the Reserve Bank of Australia’s Governor Glen Stevens speech, the Eurozone Retail sales for February (MoM and YoY), the ECB Interest rate decision and the US Non-manufacturing PMI for March. Friday’s main entries will come from Germany’s Factory Orders for February, the US Non-farm payrolls for March and Unemployment rate, also for March.

Further reading: 5 most predictable currency pairs