AUD/USD is listless on Monday, as the pair trades slightly above the 0.82 line in the North American session. On the release front, Australian New Motor Vehicle Sales posted a strong gain of 3.0%. MI Inflation Gauge dropped to 0.0%. US markets are closed in celebration of Martin Luther King Day.
The Aussie shrugged off an excellent performance from New Motor Vehicle Sales in December. The indicator jumped an impressive 3.0%, its strongest gain in more than 3 years. This points to stronger consumer spending, which is critical for the economy. On Sunday, MI Inflation Gauge continued its downward trend, falling to a flat 0.0%.
Currency markets were in turmoil on Thursday, as the Swiss National Bank abruptly abandoned its cap on the exchange rate between the euro and the franc, which had a floor of 1.20 for EUR/CHF. The cap had been in place since 2011, and the move marks a major policy reversal for the normally conservative Swiss central bank. Market reaction was swift, as the euro dropped some 15% against the franc, as the pair is currently trading at parity.
Why the dramatic move by the Swiss? One reason is an attempt to fight deflation, which is hurting the Swiss economy. As well, with the euro losing value, the SNB has had to increase its euro purchases to keep EUR/CHF within the cap, and the SNB may have finally soured on the common currency. The stunning move indicates that the SNB believes that the ECB will implement quantitative easing at its policy meeting on Thursday and didn’t want to have to prop up the ailing common currency, which will likely lose ground after a QE move.
AUD/USD for Monday, January 19, 2015
AUD/USD January 19 at 15:55 GMT
AUD/USD 0.8218 H: 0.8244 L: 0.8196
- AUD/USD has shown little movement on Monday., as the pair trades slightly above support at 0.8214.
- 0.8315 is a strong resistance line.
- On the downside, 0.8214 is under strong pressure. 0.8150 is next.
- Current range: 0.8214 to 0.8315.
Further levels in both directions:
- Below: 0.8214, 0.8150, 0.8081, 0.7904 and 0.7799
- Above: 0.8315, 0.8456, 0.8547 and 0.8682
OANDA’s Open Positions Ratio
AUD/USD ratio is unchanged on Monday. This is consistent with the lack of movement currently displayed by the pair. The ratio has a majority of long positions, indicative of trader bias towards AUD/USD moving higher.
- 00:30 Australian Motor Vehicle Sales. Actual 3.0%.
*Key releases are highlighted in bold
*All release times are GMT
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