EUR/USD has posted slight losses on Friday, as the pair just above the 1.13 line in the European session. On the release front, French and German Manufacturing PMIs both missed expectations. Later in the day, Eurozone finance ministers meet in Brussels to try and find a solution to the Greek bailout crisis. In the US, the only event on the calendar is Flash Manufacturing PMI.
Eurozone manufacturing numbers were a disappointment on Friday, as French and German manufacturing PMIs fell short of their estimates. French Flash Manufacturing PMI slipped to 47.7 points, short of the forecast of 49.7 points. The index has been below the 50-point level since April, pointing to ongoing contraction. The German PMI was almost unchanged at 50.0 points, but this was shy of the estimate of 51.8 points.
Is an agreement in sight between Greece and its creditors? Eurozone finance ministers were unable to draft an agreement on Monday, but the finance ministers will try again on Friday. Greece has requested an extension of the bailout, which expires next week. However, the details of the request are not clear, and the parties will likely conduct tough negotiations at the Friday meeting. The stakes are high, since if Greece does not receive bailout funds or bridge funding, Greece could be forced to leave the Eurozone and abandon the euro.
On Thursday, the ECB took a major step aimed to improve transparency, as the central bank published a summary of its January policy meeting, the first time the Bank has done so. At the January meeting, the ECB decided that it would implement a massive QE program in March, with purchases of EUR 60 billion each month. The summary did not contain any surprises, but did note that ECB policymakers had discussed a EUR 50 billion QE scheme before deciding to set the amount at EUR 60 billion each month. The summary release puts the ECB more in line with major central banks such as the Federal Reserve and BOJ, which publish minutes of each policy meeting.
On Wednesday, the Federal Reserve released the minutes of its previous policy meeting. The minutes were decidedly dovish in nature, as Fed policymakers raised concerns that a mid-year rate hike could hurt the economic recovery. The Fed also said it was worried about the impact of global events on the US economy, such as the slowdown in China and the Greek financial crisis. With US inflation at low levels, the Fed is not in any rush to raise rates, so speculation of a mid-year rate may have been premature.
EUR/USD for Friday, February 20, 2015
EUR/USD February 20 at 10:05 GMT
EUR/USD 1.1327 H: 1.1373 L: 1.1303
- EUR/USD was flat in the Asian session. The pair has posted slight losses in the European session, breaking below support at 1.1340.
- 1.1340 has switched to a resistance role as the pair trades at lower levels. It is a weak line and could see further action during the day. 1.1426 is stronger.
- 1.1231 is a strong support level.
- Current range: 1.1231 to 1.1340
Further levels in both directions:
- Below: 1.1231, 1.1154, 1.1066 and 1.0909
- Above: 1.1340, 1.1426, 1.1525, 1.1634 and 1.1754
OANDA’s Open Positions Ratio
EUR/USD ratio is pointing to gains in short positions on Friday. This is not consistent with the movement of the pair, as the euro has posted losses. The ratio has a majority of short positions, indicative of trader bias towards the euro continuing to move lower.
- 7:00 German PPI. Estimate -0.3%. Actual -0.6%.
- 8:00 French Flash Manufacturing PMI. Estimate 49.7 points. Actual 47.7 points.
- 8:00 French Flash Services PMI. Estimate 49.9 points. Actual 53.4 points.
- 8:30 German Flash Manufacturing PMI. Estimate 51.8 points. Actual 50.9 points.
- 8:30 German Flash Services PMI. Estimate 54.3 points. Actual 55.5 points.
- 9:00 Eurozone Flash Manufacturing PMI. Estimate 51.6 points. Actual 51.1 points.
- 9:00 Eurozone Flash Services PMI. Estimate 53.2 points. Actual 53.9 points.
- All Day – Eurogroup Meetings.
- 14:45 US Flash Manufacturing PMI. Estimate 53.7 points.
*Key releases are highlighted in bold
*All release times are GMT