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AUD/USD – Aussie Shrugs off Weak Australian Job Numbers

AUD/USD has posted slight gains on Thursday. Early in the North American session, the pair is trading slightly above the 0.75 level. On the release front, Australian Employment Change declined 3.9 thousand, well off the forecast of a 15.2 thousand gain. The unemployment rate edged lower to 5.6%. In the US, retail sales came in at -0.3%, weaker than the estimate of -0.1%. Unemployment Claims were close to the forecast, and the Philly Fed Manufacturing Index easily beat expectations. On Friday, the US releases CPI and UoM Consumer Sentiment.

Australian payrolls continue to show strong volatility from month to month, making accurate projections a tricky task. The August report showed a decline of 3.9 thousand, well off the estimate. This reading was much weaker than the excellent July reading of 26.2 thousand. Despite the poor release, the Aussie managed to hold its own against the US dollar. The Australian currency fell 1.3% on Tuesday, in response to remarks from RBA assistant governor Christopher Kent. At an event in Sydney, Kent was unusually blunt in his remarks about the Australian dollar, saying that the exchange rate had not dropped as much as expected following recent rate cuts. The bank lowered rates by a quarter-point in May and August to a record low 1.50%. The Aussie is currently trading at the 0.75 level, unchanged since the rate cut back in May. The RBA has often fretted about the high value of the exchange rate, but any declines by the Aussie after such comments have usually been short-lived.

With a crucial Federal Reserve policy meeting on September 21, the Fed has imposed a blackout period on public comments from FOMC members. This will allow the markets to digest Thursday’s key releases without being distracted by comments from FOMC members, which have done little to clarify what are Fed’s monetary plans for the remainder of the year. As things currently stand, a September hike has been priced in at 15%, while the likelihood of a December move is 43%. These numbers could drop after unimpressive data from US retail sales reports. Retail Sales declined 0.3% in August, marking its first decline in five months. There was no relief from Core Retail Sales, which fell 0.1% and missed expectations. The weak retail sales numbers point to softness in consumer spending, a key driver of economic growth. Next up are consumer inflation and confidence reports, which will be released on Friday. Inflation numbers have been very soft for months, and little change is expected in the August releases.

AUD/USD Fundamentals

Wednesday (September 14)

Thursday (September 15)

Upcoming Key Events

Friday (September 16)

*All release times are EDT

* Key events are in bold

AUD/USD for Thursday, September 15, 2016

AUD/USD September 15 at 11:05 EDT

Open: 0.7481 High: 0.7509 Low: 0.7431 Close: 0.7507

AUD/USD Technical

S3 S2 S1 R1 R2 R3
0.7200 0.7339 0.7440 0.7560 0.7701 0.7835

Further levels in both directions:

OANDA’s Open Positions Ratio

AUD/USD ratio showing little movement in the Thursday session. Currently, long positions have a strong majority (61%), indicative of trader bias towards AUD/USD continuing to gain ground.

This article is for general information purposes only. It is not investment advice or a solution to buy or sell securities. Opinions are the authors; not necessarily that of OANDA Corporation or any of its affiliates, subsidiaries, officers or directors. Leveraged trading is high risk and not suitable for all. You could lose all of your deposited funds.

Kenny Fisher

Kenny Fisher [4]

Currency Analyst at Market Pulse [5]
Kenny Fisher joined OANDA in 2012 as a Currency Analyst. Kenny writes a daily column about current economic and political developments affecting the major currency pairs, with a focus on fundamental analysis. Kenny began his career in forex at Bendix Foreign Exchange in Toronto, where he worked as a Corporate Account Manager for over seven years.
Kenny Fisher

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