2013-03-21 19:29 (UTC)
XE Market Analysis
The dollar was mostly rangebound in N.Y. dealings on Thursday, though EUR-USD was the choppiest major pairing, rising and falling in concert with Cyprus headlines, and a soft risk backdrop. The pairing held a 1.2883 to 1.2942 trading band, though tested both sides of the range more than once. U.S. economic data was generally good, a jobless claims were in line with expectations, while flash PMIs improved, the Philly Fed headline was much stronger than forecasts, and existing home sales were on target. Cyprus continued to rile the markets, despite the fact the country's GDP is barely a blip on the EU radar screen. This said, the official EU handling of the situation has been anything but stellar, and raises questions on the durability of the Union. Elsewhere, USD-JPY slid with EUR-JPY, with USD-JPY heading toward 94.50 late in the session. Cable traded over 1.5200 briefly before pulling back on profit taking, while the dollar bloc was mixed.[EUR, USD]
EUR-USD popped to 1.2925 from around the figure on a bit of delayed reaction to earlier Cyprus news (The Cypriot government will meet at 6 pm today to discuss a proposed "investment solidarity" fund, which is intended to help raise the EUR 5.8 bln contribution to the bailout. ). London short covering was a driver on the move above the 1.2900 mark, though sellers returned into 1.2940-50. With Cyprus far from settled, it appears the tactic of selling into upticks will continue. EUR-USD continued its roller coater ride through the afternoon, edging toward session lows under 1.2885 for the third time since the start of the session. Talk of the imminent failure of Cyprus Popular Bank weighed, as did the general risk-off backdrop. Equities added to previous losses, more broadly supporting the dollar and yen.[USD, JPY]
USD-JPY drifted under 95.00 on EUR-JPY weakness as uncertainty over Cyprus' future in the eurozone fueled yen repositioning. A soft risk backdrop helped the yen as well. After the press conference from BoJ Governor Kuroda specs were more comfortable buying JPY. Kuroda signaled more policy easing, yet fell short of the bold remarks that were anticipated and did not suggest there would be an emergency meeting ahead of the next scheduled monetary policy meeting on April 3-4. Japanese names should still buy dips into near-term support between 95.00 and 94.75, though eurozone events will drive things into early next week. EUR still has downside risk, but both the cross and the dollar pairing are being limited by overstretched short positions, as well as light reserve recycling.[GBP, USD]
Cable fell on profit taking after intra-day longs cut positions over 1.5200. Cable initially tested levels over 1.5200 after U.K. retail sales and spent a short period of time after the N.Y. open chopping either side of the level after U.K. CBI data. However, stops at late February highs around 1.5220-25 held, which encouraged a move back to 1.5135. Buyers are likely on dips, with the GBP tone looking better than it has done of late after various comments against further sterling weakness from BoE Governor King and other BoE members over the last week.[USD, CHF]
EUR-CHF is trading close to 1.2200 after it traded in lockstep with EUR-USD amid rising expectations that Cyprus will come up with another plan in order to get a bailout. It has to find EUR 5.8 bln, but could not pass the bank deposit tax and is currently in talks with Russia to provide aid. The majority of the funds deposited at Cyprus banks is believed to be from Russian investors. EUR-CHF should see limited upside until there is more certainty over Cyprus and sellers are expected to cap into 1.2230 and 1.2250.[USD, CAD]
USD-CAD bounced from the 1.0200 level in early trade, moving back over 1.0250 as corporate buyers reportedly swooped in near the figure. The fact that Wall Street faded through the session was a supportive factor, as were softer oil and commodity prices. Offers are seen from 1.0250, and are said to be lined up to 1.0300, so ranges may hold up for the time being.