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British Pound Volatility Continues and a Break Is Inevitable…

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British Pound Talking Points:

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Technical Forecast for British Pound: Neutral

My technical outlook for the British Pound over the coming week is neutral…but that doesn’t mean it will be quiet. In fact, the reality is likely to be exactly the opposite of the calm that a ‘neutral’ setting would imply. It is likely that the currency maintains its struggle to set a clear and consistent course through the near future, but volatility will likely remain explosive for the currency. There is little surprise that Brexit is a key concern for the currency and charts traders should not write off that fact just because it strays into the fundamental realm. So long as the headlines signal that there is no clear course for the UK’s divorce from the European Union, the market will not fully commit to a clear direction on the currency. There is too much influence tied into the state of the economic relationship (readily seen in EURGBP) for the more stoic and systemic market interest behind Sterling capital flows to make a commitment.

In the absence of this deep current to stabilize markets, more volatile and speculative elements will exert greater influence over price action. Hence, we are left with exceptional volatility but limited capacity to spark a trend. Below is an equally-weighted index of the Pound with a 20-day average true range (ATR) as a percentage of current spot. The activity measure is at its highest levels since November 2016 – shortly after the initial Brexit detonation. Tight ranges do not survive such volatility for long. It can readily lead to ‘technical breaks’ but it doesn’t necessarily offer the transition to a reliable trend unless underlying speculative hurdle is crossed. This is one of those times where technical traders should keep tabs on the ‘other’ analytical technique.

Chart of an Equally-Weighted Pound Index with 20-Day ATR as Percentage of Spot (Daily)

British Pound Volatility Continues and a Break Is Inevitable…

From the benchmark GBPUSD, we find the same general conditions registered from the Sterling index above: there is considerable volatility with unmistakable range. The volatility range on this particular pair is similarly very high but not as extreme as the individual currency in relief – the Dollar’s restraints likely bear on this relationship. To the topside of this pairs, we have a resistance just shy of 1.3400 born of the confluence in a rising trendline of highs back to July as well as the midpoint of the 2018-2019 bear wave. The lower threshold is less overt. The 200-day moving average and a short-term (though questionable due to the January flash crash) trendline coincide around 1.2975/95. I would hold neither to hold up against further bouts of extreme volatility nor to spark a reliable trend.

GBPUSD and the 50-day and 200-day Moving Averages (Daily)

GBPUSD & CBOE Volatility Index

For those that follow volatility measures regularly in their analysis, the paths of implied (expected) and historical (realized) activity measures can offer more distinctive insight on the markets. Below is the GBPUSD overlaid with the CBOE’s volatility index derived from the same pair. On a close-over-close basis, the measure is remarkably high but it didn’t overtake the November peak when Prime Minister May’s withdrawal proposal worked out with the EU was rejected and the future of the Brexit proceedings were thrown into disarray. However, if we look at the measure on an intraday basis, it charged to the highest since the aftermath of the initial Brexit vote (the later months of 2016). A comparison of this measure and the 20-day ATR can offer useful analysis.

Chart of GBPUSD and the CBOE’s Pound Volatility Index (Daily)

EURGBP & 50 Day Moving Average

Another important cross to watch for those that want to get a technical perspective of a fundamentally-distracted currency is EURGBP. The Pound is the focal point of Brexit but the Euro (and EU) have as much to lose if the negotiations turn out poorly. This pair is therefore understandably afflicted. The 20-day ATR here is extreme and it serves as a good reminder that technical boundaries are not the only consideration when trading Sterling. The slide through 0.8625 back in March was a long-term range support break and it seemed like the tides would shift on a multi-year congestion pattern that followed an impressive rally from the pair. As significant as the cue was, momentum would never set up camp. Friday’s drop was the second largest single-day loss in two years. That is the kind of situation we are dealing with here – not the slow and methodical setup to a inverse head-and-shoulders pattern that you may expect from a look at just levels.

Chart of EURGBP and 50-day Moving Average (Daily)

EURGBP & 50 Day moving Average

From the third most liquid Pound-based major, we have a combination of the Sterling’s own volatility and the addition of the Yen’s penchant to reflect market volatility. Here, the floor of a rough rising trend channel from the January flash crash is mingling with the 50-day and 200-day moving averages around 144.25/75. I would not expect this zone of support to be respected should we feel subsequent waves of volatility similar to what we’ve experienced the past two weeks. For what it’s worth, the collective resistance the trendline pulled from a descending series of highs and 38.2 percent Fibonacci retracement of the February 2018 high to flash crash low (excluding the tail) around 148.75 would likely carry greater weight. Yet, the higher the volatility, the more intangible the border becomes.

Chart of GBPJPY along with 50-day and 200-day Moving Averages (Daily)

GBPJPY and 50 & 200 Day Moving Average

Finally, a look at speculative positioning reveals there is an intent gap between the larger and smaller players in the market. The large speculators measured in the CFTC’s Commitment of Traders (COT) report reveals that futures traders of size took a considerable gamble by significantly shifting away from the net short view through Tuesday (when the data collection stops for the week). They were likely expecting a Brexit breakthrough and the same from the Cable. That didn’t occur. It is also true that total speculative interest is softening in the face of volatility. Retail traders are not so put off by the activity levels. While total retail positions measured by IG’s Client Sentiment data has been consistent, the swing between a net long and net short position has been dramatic. Reactive and range bound market conditions are what retail traders typically look for – dangerous but temporarily appropriate. Follow what retail traders are doing, but they will likely put more faith in technical boundaries than our current conditions general deserve.

Chart of Net Speculative Positioning in Dollar Futures Positions from CFTC Report (Weekly)

Speculative Positioning

Chart of Retail Trader Positioning from IG Clients (Daily)

GBPUSD IG Client Positioning

Other Weekly Technical Forecasts:

Australian Dollar Forecast – AUD/USD Rebound Stalls Post-Fed

Oil Forecast – Evening Star Prints as $60 Breakout Fails



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Crude Oil Price Outlook Bearish, Eyeing January Lows on Long Bets

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Crude Oil Technical Forecast: Bearish

  • Crude oil prices struggled sustaining upside momentum this past week
  • Technical signals on the daily, 4-hour chart hinting at weakness ahead
  • IG Client Sentiment offering stronger bearish crude oil contrarian bias

Build confidence in your own Crude Oil trading strategy with the help of our free guide!

Crude Oil Technical Outlook

Crude oil prices struggled to sustain upside momentum this past week as US recession fears plagued risk trends and the sentiment-linked commodity. From a technical standpoint, this falls in line with oil’s dominant downtrend since the middle of April when the commodity fell through rising support from the end of last year.

Looking at the oil daily chart, gains during the front-end of the past 5 trading days were tamed by a falling channel of resistance going back to the middle of July (parallel red lines below). Horizontal resistance also held at 57.38, former highs from February. This left crude oil sitting just above the lower boundary of psychological support which is a range between 54.55 and 55.41.

If descending resistance continues to define near-term price action in the commodity, we may see crude oil extend weakness down the road. Prices may eventually end up at the next critical psychological area between 50.41 and 52.08. This range held as support on multiple occasions such as in June and back in January. Meanwhile, near-term technical signals also hint towards downtrend resumption.

Crude Oil Daily Chart

Crude Oil Daily Price Chart

Crude Oil Chart Created in TradingView

Zooming in on the crude oil 4-hour chart below, rising support from August 7 was taken out this past week. As such, a close under 54.55 may pave the way for continued declines. Otherwise, the upside challenge for the commodity is taking out descending resistance from the middle of July which would expose the July 31 high at 58.79 down the road.

For more updates on crude oil, including fundamental developments, feel free to follow me on Twitter here @ddubrovskyFX.

Crude Oil 4-Hour Chart

Crude Oil 4-Hour Price Chart

Crude Oil Chart Created in TradingView

Crude Oil Sentiment Outlook – Bearish

Meanwhile, IG Client Positioning is offering a stronger crude oil bearish contrarian trading bias. Traders are further net long on August 16 than compared to the prior day. To learn more about how you can use this in our own trading strategy, join me every week on Wednesday’s at 00:00 GMT as I uncover what market positioning has to say about the prevailing trends in financial markets.

Crude Oil IG Client Positioning

Oil Client Positioning Chart

FX Trading Resources

— Written by Daniel Dubrovsky, Currency Analyst for DailyFX.com

To contact Daniel, use the comments section below or @ddubrovskyFX on Twitter



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Into the Jackson Hole Vortex

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Weekly Gold Price Forecast: Into the Jackson Hole Vortex

Traders shouldn’t be surprised if gold prices spend most of the week trading sideways ahead of the Federal Reserve’s Jackson Hole Economic Policy Symposium.

Weekly Gold Price Forecast: Into the Jackson Hole VortexWeekly Gold Price Forecast: Into the Jackson Hole Vortex

Weekly Fundamental Gold Price Forecast: Neutral

  • Gold prices (as well as other precious metals) continue to outperform in an environment defined by falling real sovereign yields – that is, inflation-adjusted yields remain in negative territory.
  • Traders shouldn’t be surprised if gold prices spend most of the week trading sideways ahead of the Federal Reserve’s Jackson Hole Economic Policy Symposium.
  • The IG Client Sentiment Index shows that gold prices in USD-terms (XAUUSD) may give back some of their recent gains in the days ahead.

See our long-term forecasts for Gold and other major currencies with the DailyFX Trading Guides.

Gold Prices Week in Review

Gold prices, no matter how you measure them, had another good week. Not one major currency gained ground against gold, with gold prices in EUR-terms (XAUEUR) leading the way higher with a 2.11% rally. Now, gold prices in EUR-terms (XAUEUR) are quickly approaching the all-time high established in October 2016; for many of the gold-crosses, fresh all-time highs have already been achieved (gold prices in AUD-terms (XAUAUD), gold prices in GBP-terms (XAUGBP), and gold prices in NZD-terms (XAUNZD) come to mind).

But the central focus of most market participants is gold prices in USD-terms (XAUUSD), and that too produced another strong week, adding 1.11%. Gold prices, regardless of the currency basis, have been on a strong run higher in recent weeks in part to the global monetary response to the US-China trade war; we’ll get clarification on the state of global easing this week as central bankers from around the world descend on Jackson Hole, Wyoming for the Federal Reserve’s annual Economic Policy Symposium.

Global Trade War Concerns Keep Gold Prices Elevated

Despite improved trading conditions for global equity markets in recent weeks, not much has changed in a positive manner along the US-led trade war front. Sure, there is a détente in the US-China trade war after the US tariffs at a clip of 10% on $300 billion of imported Chinese goods were pushed back from September 1 to December 15.

Yet there is a strong argument to be made with central banks unveiling more accommodative, dovish policy in recent weeks – a trend that is expected to continue – the fundamental backdrop for gold prices remains bullish in the long-term horizon. Falling sovereign bond yields (particularly German Bunds, UK Gilts, and US Treasuries since the start of May) continue to drop lower, and as a result inflation-adjusted yields remain in negative territory – good news for precious metals.

Volatility Tamped Down Ahead of Fed’s Jackson Hole Meeting

The Fed’s Jackson Hole Economic Policy Symposium this coming week should keep volatility tamped down in the days ahead. Traders typically don’t like to stake out significant positions ahead of the Fed’s annual summit; indeed, at the end of August, many trading desks have been left absent for summer vacation.

Beyond the prospect of an unforeseen development (see: US President Trump’s tweets) in the US-China trade war, the week leading into the Fed’s Jackson Hole Economic Policy Symposium is likely to be a quieter one – even if there are several significant pieces of data set to be released.

Other Top FX Events in Week Ahead

Early in the week, on Tuesday, gold prices in AUD-terms (XAUAUD) will be in focus with the release of the Reserve Bank of Australia’s August meeting minutes. Gold prices in AUD-terms (XAUAUD) are holding near their all-time highs ahead of the minutes. Elsewhere, the commodity currencies will remain in focus with the release of the July Canada inflation report on Wednesday, drawing attention to gold prices in CAD-terms (XAUCAD).

Elsewhere, gold prices in EUR-terms will come into focus with the release of the August Eurozone PMIs, particularly as odds for more easing from the European Central Bank at their September policy meeting have crept higher in recent weeks.

Net-Long Gold Futures Positioning Just Off the Yearly High

Weekly Gold Price Forecast: Into the Jackson Hole Vortex

Finally, looking at positioning, according to the CFTC’s COT for the week ended August 13, speculators decreased their net-long gold futures positions to 290.1K contracts, down slightly from the 292.6K net-long contracts held in the week prior. The market is still the most net-long since September 2016 despite the slight moderation in bullish positioning.

FX TRADING RESOURCES

Whether you are a new or experienced trader, DailyFX has multiple resources available to help you: an indicator for monitoring trader sentiment; quarterly trading forecasts; analytical and educational webinars held daily; trading guides to help you improve trading performance, and even one for those who are new to FX trading.

— Written by Christopher Vecchio, CFA, Senior Currency Strategist

To contact Christopher, email him at cvecchio@dailyfx.com

Follow him in the DailyFX Real Time News feed and Twitter at @CVecchioFX



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Dow Jones, DAX 30, FTSE 100, Nasdaq 100 Technical Forecasts

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Dow Jones, DAX 30, FTSE 100, Nasdaq 100 Forecast:

Dow Jones, DAX 30, FTSE 100, Nasdaq 100 Forecasts

Stock volatility has been heightened across the various equity markets as traders continue to come to terms with conflicting fundamental themes and uncertainty. Amidst the volatility, the Dow Jones, DAX 30 and FTSE 100 have slipped beneath their longer-term trendlines from late 2018 whereas the Nasdaq remains narrowly above. In the week ahead, a continuation of Friday’s rally could see the Indices target prior support which will now look to offer resistance. Here are the levels to watch.

Dow Jones Forecast

Technical Outlook: Neutral

The DJIA closed Friday trading slightly beneath a band of resistance and the ascending trendline from late December 2018. If bulls can surmount the area of confluence in the week ahead, subsequent resistance may reside around 26,705 which marks the high from January 2018. On the other hand, bears will look to break the potential trendline posed by the June and August lows. If selling accelerates, June lows around 24,600 could be the final line in the sand before steeper losses.

Dow Jones Price Chart: 4 – Hour Time Frame (May – August) (Chart 1)

DJI Price Chart

Nasdaq 100 Forecast

Technical Outlook: Neutral

Unlike the Dow Jones, the Nasdaq was able to recapture its ascending trendline from December. It will look to provide buoyance – as will the prospective trendline from June and August lows – next week. Topside barriers may exist at 7,670 to 7,720 before the ascending trendline originating from March lows (the dotted red line above August swing highs) can become a factor. The trendline has influenced price throughout the last two quarters, most recently rebuking a move higher on August 13.

Nasdaq 100 Price Chart: 4 – Hour Time Frame (May – August) (Chart 2)

NDX Price Chart

DAX 30 Forecast

Technical Outlook: Bearish

Shifting to the DAX, recent price action has not been kind to the German equity Index. Consequently, it is now well beneath the ascending trendline from December – similar to the line the Dow Jones is within reach of. If bulls return in earnest, however, two horizontal levels at 11,500 and 11,840 will look to stall a rebound before it can test the trendline near 12,200.

Interested in longer-term trades? Check out our Q3 Forecasts for equities, Gold, oil and more.

For support, the DAX is running rather shorthanded. Initial levels to watch are the August bottom – coinciding with lows from March – around 11,268. Should the lows from last week surrender to renewed bearishness, it could open the door to deeper losses down to the 11,000 area where multiple swing-lows from Q1 2018 reside.

DAX 30 Price Chart: Daily Time Frame (March – August) (Chart 3)

DAX Price Chart

FTSE 100 Forecast

Technical Outlook: Bearish

Finally, the FTSE 100 finds itself in a similar situation to the DAX 30. As bulls yield to bears, price has collapsed in August with the Index roughly 600 points lower than its July high. If bears continue to drive the FTSE lower, initial support might reside near the swing lows of March and June around 7,080 – but likely only over short timeframes. Longer-term support could materialize at the psychological 7,000 level before the door is opened to probe subsequent support.

FTSE 100 Price Chart: Daily Time Frame (February – August) (Chart 4)

FTSE 100 Price Chart

Conversely, topside barriers near 7,200 will look to stall rebounds before the Index can look to target August swing-highs around 7,300 and the ascending trendline from December at 7,365. Given that the DAX and FTSE have plunged through multiple support levels in August, it would be presumptuous to assume they have completed their descents without clear cut evidence.

To that end, the technical outlook for two European indices is bearish, while the Dow Jones and Nasdaq 100 lack a clear technical leaning in my view – resulting in a neutral bias. Follow @PeterHanksFX for updates and analysis on these themes as they progress and what it means for equity markets.

–Written by Peter Hanks, Junior Analyst for DailyFX.com

Contact and follow Peter on Twitter @PeterHanksFX

Read more:Will the Stock Market Crash in 2019?

DailyFX forecasts on a variety of currencies such as the US Dollar or the Euro are available from the DailyFX Trading Guides page. If you’re looking to improve your trading approach, check out Traits of Successful Traders. And if you’re looking for an introductory primer to the Forex market, check out our New to FX Guide.



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