Asian stock markets: Nikkei down 0.60 %, Shanghai Composite lost 0.40 %, Hang Seng declined 0.65 %, ASX 200 lost 0.80 %
Commodities: Gold at $1233 (+0.05 %), Silver at $17.78 (+0.15 %), WTI Oil at $52.70 (+0.10 %), Brent Oil at $55.15 (+0.15 %)
Rates: US 10-year yield at 2.48, UK 10-year yield at 1.21, German 10-year yield at 0.32
News & Data:
Japan CPI Jan (YoY): 0.4%
Japan Services PMI Feb: 51.3 (Prior 51.9)
Japan Composite PMI Feb: 52.2 (Prior 52.3)
Japan Household Spending Jan (YoY): -1.2% (Prior -0.30%)
Japan Household Confidence Feb: 43.1 (Prior 43.2)
Japan Unemployment Rate Jan: 3.0% (Prior 3.10%)
Japan Jobs/Applications Ratio Jan: 1.44 (Prior 1.43)
Australia AIG Services Index Feb: 49.0 (Prior 54.5)
PBoC Fixes USDCNY Reference Rate At 6.8896 (prev fix 6.8809)
The US Dollar is showing renewed strength, as the market is clearly expecting a rate hike by the Federal Reserve this month. Several major pairs are approaching key support level. EUR/USD is nearing 1.05 again, while GBP/USD briefly broke below 1.2250 yesterday. A clear break sub-1.2250 would then signal that the downtrend could extend to 1.20. Meanwhile, USD/JPY struggled at 114.50 resistance and reversed. However, demand remains solid and decent buying interest can be expected at 113.80 and again 113.50.
After a period of low volatility, the Australian Dollar is finally moving again. The broad Dollar strength put the commodity currencies under pressure. AUD/USD broke below 0.76 yesterday and momentum selling brought it to a low of 0.7540. Important support is now seen around 0.7510/20. Should it break below that area, a test of 0.73 seems likely.