There weren’t many significant economic releases scheduled this week, but there were some key themes that moved the markets:
1) Risk Aversion from Iraq – caused safe haven flows and oil prices to surge.
2) RBNZ raised the OCR to 3.25% – boosted the NZD
3) Carney Sounded Hawkish – boosted the GBP
4) BoJ Maintains Stimulus – nothing new, but JPY softened a bit.
Let’s take a look at the developments in EUR/USD, GBP/USD, USD/JPY, NZD/USD, and WTI Crude Oil.
EUR/USD consolidated this week after holding above 1.3510. It found resistance at 1.3575 and maintains the bearish outlook toward the 1.35 handle and the 1.3476 low on the year. The risk aversion from the Iraq crisis is also weighing on EUR/USD. At this point a break above 1.3580 can signal consolidation, or even some bullish correction with 1.35 holding as key support.
GBP/USD extended a bullish start to the month. On Friday, BoE Governor, Mark Carney said in a speech that the bank might raise rates earlier than the market expected. On the back of this hawkish outlook, traders pushed GBP/USD higher. It is trading just below the 2014-high at 1.6996. Above 1.70, the 2009 high at 1.7040 will be the next key level in to monitor.
USD/JPY is sticking around the 102 level. The Bank of Japan announced that it would maintain its current pace of stimulus to get annual inflation to 2.0%. This was nothing surprising. Technically, USD/JPY is sideways, but if it can hold above 102, there is bullish bias towards 103. A break above 103 will be needed to open up a bullish outlook to the 104.11 resistance and 105.44 high on the year. Inability to hold above 102 keeps the USD/JPY in consolidation with the 100.74 low on the year in sight.
The NZD/USD is aiming at the 2014-high after the RBNZ raised the official cash rate to 3.25%. After the bearish correction in May, NZD/USD started June with a rebound off 0.84. It extended after the RBNZ decision and is poised to challenge the 2014-high around 0.8780, above which the next key resistance is the 2011 high at 0.8842.
Oil prices trade at new high on the year are rising amid Iraq crisis. WTI crude oil prices have been consolidating since March with resistance around 105. This week, with iOil price pushed to 107. 2012 and 2013 highs in the 110-112 area are now in the scope after this week’s bullish breakout. It is conceivable that tension in Iraq and other parts of the world ie. Ukraine can pressure WTI crude toward the 2011 high at 114.80.
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