Running into resistance

Currency markets will remain range bound today although many currencies appear to be running into resistance in the wake of recent sharp moves. For instance, GBP/USD has run into a wall and lost momentum following the release of softer than forecast UK November CPI data yesterday. Unless the UK jobs report and MPC minutes today are particularly strong, GBP/USD will remain capped around 1.6300.

Similarly EUR/USD will find it difficult to make much further headway although a gain in the German IFO survey will keep the currency pair supported around 1.3730. USD/JPY’s upside is being undermined by lower US yields but firmer Japanese equities are helping to keep the currency pair supported.

AUD faced yet more jawboning by RBA Governor Stevens attempting to talk the currency lower. Given that such comments are nothing new markets are beginning to discount them, with AUD/USD likely to consolidate above 0.8900.

Asian currency direction will be limited ahead of the Fed outcome too although lower US yields will give some relief. Overall, it remains a case of South East Asian FX underperformance versus North East Asia outperformance.

The exception is the INR which has outperformed so far this month but will face an obstacle in terms of today’s RBI policy decision. 25 bps hikes in the repo and reverse repo rates are widely expected in the wake of higher inflation readings but the INR will also have one eye on the Fed FOMC given that it is the most sensitive Asian currency to US yield movements as outflows from India’s bonds continue. INR will continue to remain capped against this background.


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