Forex News and Rumors – Afternoon Update

U.S. Retail Sales Weak for Traditional Holiday Period

Despite massive price cuts to entice shoppers into their stores, U.S. retailers suffered the worst December earnings total in 40 years. Outlook for the first quarter of 2009 remains grim.

“Consumers have become so accustomed to markdowns that nobody wants to pay full retail anymore,” said Craig Johnson, president of retail-consulting firm Customer Growth Partners LLC in New Canaan, Connecticut. More

Oil Hoarding on the Rise as Firms Wait for Higher Prices

Traders and even oil companies themselves are chartering large oil container ships to act as floating vaults in which to store oil as they wait for higher prices expected later in the year. The current contango situation combined with high onshore inventory levels, has analysts predicting that even more oil will be held back from the market in anticipation of higher prices. More

Spotlight Back on Gold as Dollar Weakens

During the U.S. dollar’s rally late last year, gold prices declined but with the greenback now struggling against most of the major currencies, investors are once again turning to gold as a safe haven. More

Dollar Falls Ahead of U.S. Employment Report

The greenback fell today ahead of tomorrow’s Non-Farm Payroll and Unemployment Rate reports which are expected to show that unemployment in the U.S. has reached a sixteen-year high. More

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