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Wednesday, February 28th
The EUR/USD pair follows broad market trend this Wednesday, moving closer to the level of 1.2200. Recent retreat of the pair could be explained by surprisingly hawkish rhetoric of the new Fed Chair J.Powell in Congress. Yesterday Mr.Powell gave an upbeat assessment of the economy and positive outlook for inflation, saying that he expects further gradual monetary policy tightening, with the first interest rate increase in March FOMC meeting. Adding to this, Mr.Powell noted that his personal outlook for the economy had strengthened since December. So, both CBs’ speakers have delivered their messages, and we can say that Mr.Powell sounded a lot more hawkish comparing to cautious tone of Mr.Draghi, which makes the divergence between the Fed and ECB come back to the fore, thus giving extra support to the US dollar. On the data front, today we have pretty busy session, as both economies have prepared important data releases for today, while recent economic events will also continue to influence the pair.
The GBP/USD pair was consolidating its positions near the level of 1.39 in Asia, having taken a breather after its sharp downside rally. Yesterday the pair accelerated its decline after the new Fed Chair Jerome Powell gave a hawkish assessment to the US economy during his Congressional testimony, thus sending the US dollar higher against its major competitors. Moreover, the pound remains under strong bearish pressure due to ongoing Brexit fears. Now markets are remaining in anticipation of Friday, where Prime Minister Theresa May will give her vision on further Brexit scenario. Today the UK data calendar won’t bring us anything noteworthy, but the US will publish prelim. GDP numbers and data from the housing market, however, it is expected that the market will continue digesting recent hawkish comments of Mr.Powell, which will also influence the pair.
The NZD/USD pair remains heavy in the middle of this week, having refreshed its 2-week lows during the Asian session on the level of 0.7220. The key reason of pair’s recent retreat could be called yesterday’s positive US economy’s assessment of the new Fed Chair J.Powell during his first semi-annual testimony in Congress, which positively affected positions of the US dollar across the market. Moreover, shrinking risk appetite, caused by red numbers of Chinese manufacturing data, additionally accelerated decline of the pair. However, seems that the pair met some support near its recent lows and managed to recover some pips in early Europe, as US bulls took a short breather after sharp rally of the greenback. In the day ahead, it is expected that the pair will stay under pressure, as markets will continue to digest recent comments of Mr.Powell, while the US will publish preliminary GDP numbers and data from housing market, which will also be able to attract some attention during the NA session.
The USD/JPY pair ignores broad market trend and remains negative on Wednesday on the back of hawkish decision of the BoJ. Recall, yesterday the pair received notable bullish impetus following Fed Chair J.Powell's unambiguously positive comments on the economy. However, the bullish rally didn’t last long and the pair turned in the north direction in wake of news headlines, saying that the BoJ decided to reduce its massive QE program. Adding to this, increasing demand for safe-haven assets, underpinned by weaker-than-expected Chinese manufacturing data, provides extra support to the yen this Wednesday. Looking ahead, today the US macrocalendar will offer investors prelim. GDP and pending home sales data, however, it seems that the dust around Mr.Powell’s comments hasn’t settled down yet, so US bulls will try to restore demand for the greenback further during today's session.
Major events of the day:
German Unemployment Change – 11.00 (GMT +2)
Prelim. EU CPI – 12.00 (GMT +2)
Prelim. US GDP – 15.30 (GMT +2)
US Pending Home Sales – 17.00 (GMT +2)
US Crude Oil Inventories – 17.30 (GMT +2)
Support and resistance levels for the major currency pairs:
EURUSD S. 1.2141 R. 1.2391
USDJPY S. 106.35 R. 108.15
GBPUSD S. 1.3782 R. 1.4060
USDCHF S. 0.9330 R. 0.9446
AUDUSD S. 0.7727 R. 0.7899
NZDUSD S. 0.7183 R. 0.7329
USDCAD S. 1.2630 R. 1.2848
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