The US dollar gave up ground to some of its rivals because of weaker than expected retail sales figures. Headline retail sales increased by only 0.2% instead of the estimated 0.3% rise while the core version of the report printed a meager 0.1% uptick versus the projected 0.2% gain. CPI readings are lined up for today, with the headline figure slated to show a flat reading and the core figure likely to print a 0.1% increase. Another round of weak figures could spur more losses for the dollar while strong data could set off a rebound.
The euro struggled to stay afloat after data from the euro zone came up short of expectations. The German ZEW economic sentiment index slipped from 25.0 to 12.1, worse than the projected drop to 18.5. The region’s ZEW index tumbled from 47.6 to 33.3, lower than the projected 42.1 figure. Final CPI readings are due from the euro zone today and no changes to the initially estimated 0.2% headline figure and 1.0% core figure are expected.
The pound gave up ground when UK inflation reports reflected a slight downturn in price levels as expected. The headline CPI fell from 0.1% to 0.0% in August while the core CPI dipped from 1.2% to 1.0%, taking the recent declines in commodity prices into account. Jobs data is due from the UK today and the economy probably added 5.1K positions for August, enough to keep the jobless rate unchanged at 5.6%.
The franc resumed its selloff to the dollar, following weaker than expected reports from the euro zone. There have been no figures out of Switzerland yesterday, although the economy printed dismal PPI and retail sales reports the other day. For today, the Swiss ZEW economic expectations index is up for release and a drop from the earlier 5.9 reading could spur more franc losses.
The yen regained some ground after the BOJ statement, which reflected no change in monetary policy as expected. Japanese policymakers downgraded forecasts for exports and output, accounting for the downturn in demand from its trade partners. One board member voted to taper asset purchases and adopt a more flexible inflation-targeting scheme but he was outvoted by majority of the policymakers.
Commodity Currencies (AUD, NZD, CAD)
Comdolls were able to stay afloat and advance against the US dollar in recent trading. Data from New Zealand was better than expected, with the dairy auction yielding a 16.5% gain in prices and the current account balance showing a slightly smaller deficit than expected. Canadian manufacturing sales and foreign securities purchases data are lined up for today then New Zealand has its Q2 GDP on tap for the next Asian trading session.
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