- The severe tumble in risk trends last week wasn’t threatening market stability through the open session of this new week
- DXY has offered little clarity on direction as primary motivation is itself unclear, meanwhile the deficit hit a 6-year high
- Euro and Pound are seeing the quiet before their respective Italian and Brexit storms, be mindful of your trade intent with each
What do the DailyFX Analysts expect from the Dollar, Euro, Equities, Oil and more through the 4Q 2018? Download forecasts for these assets and more with technical and fundamental insight from the DailyFX Trading Guides page.
Risk Trends Steady to Start the Week, the Threats Remain Numerous
Like a life raft encircled by sharks, the risk-leaning benchmarks opened this week with an air of stability while the fundamental threats to the system remain distinctly unresolved. Following last week’s painful collapse in US indices – a move that motivated risk aversion far and wide – Monday’s steadfast conditions were welcomed by harried bulls. The balance was not simply isolated to US equities. European and Asian shares markets registered small movements, the emerging markets offered a measured gap lower without hitting new lows and the Yen-based carry trade eased up on its retreat. Yet, despite the implications such a correlation across diverse markets represents, there is more loaded speculative potential packed into the next move from the S&P 500, Dow and Nasdaq. These indices are still running a considerable premium to nearly every other high-profile ‘risk’ metric even after the deeper rout. The technical picture accurately reflects the circumstances moving forward. All three are hovering just above major trendline support which could readily signal a medium-term reversal in trend if cleared – in concert, the move would get on far more radars. Far more important is the sheer number of possible catalysts that can tip us back into selling pressure – or cue a notable rebound. Anticipation of the US Treasury’s call on Chinese polices keeps trade wars in focus (see the history of a century of trade wars here). Yields are at the mercy of risk trends and US Treasury yields specifically at the command of China. Growth forecasts were downgraded this past week for an otherwise ‘mundane’ threat. Earnings season hits its first ‘FAANG’ update (Netflix) Tuesday after the bell. Then there are the regional threats, which we discus below.
SPX Daily Chart
Dollar Is a Fundamental Stalemate with Too Many Charges to Keep Tabs On
When trading FX, it is difficult to avoid the US Dollar. However, given the state of its fundamental predicament, that may be an effort worth making. Whether we reference the trade-weighted DXY Dollar Index or an equally-weighted measure, there is a distinct lack of bearing on the benchmark. The picture is appropriately reflect via EURUSD, the most liquid currency bar none. There is a multi-year head-and-shoulders pattern that the pair tentative broke in August only to reverse course before conviction could take. What eventually resulted was an inverse variation of the same pattern where the break above 1.1725 again fell apart. Now trading around 1.1600, the Greenback has shown little intent to champion either bullish or bearish interests for the time being. That is not likely due to a lack of meaningful fundamental charge but instead it is more likely a side effect of an overabundance of meaningful themes tugging at the currency. For risk trends, there is not enough intensity to raise the focus on the currency’s safe haven status, but even its carry position has yet to be provoked this week. One fundamental signal that was prodded this past session but still abstract for most is the currency’s position as the unquestioned reserve leader. This United States deficit for 2018 was projected to $779 billion which equates to a 3.9 percent ratio to GDP. That is the largest dip into lending for the government since 2012 and furthers the concern that the country pushing the financing tolerance of the ratings agencies. Until we see one of these key themes take command of the currency’s bearings, it will prove difficult to trace its course.
DXY Daily Chart
Euro and Pound Tension Will Only Build into the Wednesday-Thursday EU Summit
As the Dollar flounders fundamentally, its largest counterparts are honing in on very specific fundamental themes. Yet, where there performance is riding on a single track, the outcome and timing of these uncertainties are problematically open-ended. Form the Euro, we were reminded that the currency’s future is under pressure. Following the growing discord between the Italian government and their EU/Eurozone counterparts this past weeks, the Italian Deputy Prime Minister Salvini remarked that the country doesn’t feel bound by the EU’s deficit rules – making a finer point to previous remarks that the country could increase spending if they don’t meet a generous GDP forecast and their belief that the European Central Bank (ECB) would bail them out should financial conditions grow strained. Prime Minister Conte’s remarks today and the two-day EU Summit Wednesday and Thursday will prove crucial. These particular events will very likely be more market critical than the Eurozone and Italian trade reports or the region’s investor sentiment survey from ZEW. The British Pound will also have a lot invested in the two-day meeting of the European leaders. This is a crucial ‘crunch’ event for the UK and EU to hash out a clear path for the divorce known as ‘Brexit’ (learn about the different possible Brexit outcomes in this special report). If this summit ends without resolution, the Pound is likely to tumble. Just as readily, a positive outcome will trigger a rally. Yet, after the collapse of talks between chief negotiators over the weekend and Prime Minister May’s remarks in Parliament Monday, the Cabinet meeting ahead will more likely set this event for a crash landing.
GBP Index Daily Chart
New Zealand Dollar Jumps after CPI Beat, Reminds of the Virtues of Discounted Majors
As convoluted as the backdrop seems for the likes of the Dollar, Euro and Pound; there are still options for the studious FX traders. The Canadian Dollar was given a serious charge this past session when the third quarter business sale survey from the Bank of Canada (BoC) showed an significant improvement. The general sentiment figure and lending survey were decidedly less encouraging, but these were reading taken before the breakthrough on the stalled NAFTA negotiations. Now the focus for the Loonie will more likely fall to BoC intent, so the next major update comes from Friday’s inflation update. Meanwhile, the New Zealand Dollar was prompted to a rally of its own with the release of the third quarter CPI (consumer price index) update. The 1.9 percent clip is still a ways from the upper threshold on the Reserve Bank of New Zealand’s (RBNZ) tolerance band for price pressures, but it nevertheless makes the next move decidedly more hawkish rather than dovish. Given the deep discount on the Kiwi these past months and the lack of response from the currency to last week’s risk flush, there is naturally more response to the positive news. I would expect the same for the Australian Dollar moving forward, but there the key event risk comes with the local employment report and third quarter business sentiment survey which will hit the wires at the same time. We discuss all of this and more in today’s Trading Video.
AUD/NZD Daily Chart
If you want to download my Manic-Crisis calendar, you can find the updated file here.
Written by John Kicklighter, Chief Currency Strategist for DailyFX.com
AUD/USD May Fall With Asia Stocks After Wall Street Volatility
Asia Pacific Market Open Talking Points
- British Pound and New Zealand Dollars climbed. Former enjoyed Brexit news, latter rallied on CPI
- S&P 500 recovered after risk-aversion dominated US markets on shutdown news. USD depreciated
- AUD/USD may fall as market mood sours in Asia, jobs data misses expectations. Eyes chart support
See our study on the history of trade wars to learn how it might influence financial markets!
The British Pound and New Zealand Dollar were some of the best performing majors on Wednesday. Sterling continued rallying amid ebbing ‘No-Deal’ Brexit bets despite UK Prime Minister Theresa May leaving the door open to one. Meanwhile, the Kiwi Dollar enjoyed fading expectations of an RBNZ rate cut this year after a better-than-expected local inflation report.
For pro-risk currencies such as the Australian Dollar, the US trading session offered little fuel to extend their gains. White House Economic Adviser Kevin Hassett spoke and warned the continuation of the government shutdown could result in near-zero growth. After gapping higher, the S&P 500 traded lower as domestic government bonds rallied. After a slight rally later, the index closed +0.22%.
This signaled a flight-to-safety as risk capital flowed into haven assets. The US Dollar, which tends to benefit in this scenario, failed to capitalize on gains and ended the day cautiously lower. Falling yields alongside a fading Fed rate hike bets may have been a more prominent influence. Meanwhile the anti-risk Japanese Yen still ended the day lower, perhaps due to the Bank of Japan lowering inflation expectations.
Earlier in the day, US President Donald Trump warned China that tariffs could increase should a trade deal not be reached. As the markets then transitioned into Thursday’s session, the White House requested data on if the shutdown prolongs into March. This showed that it may continue for the time being. As such, these developments may adversely impact Asia Pacific benchmark stock indexes as markets turn risk-averse.
This could boost the Japanese Yen at the expense of the sentiment-linked Australian and New Zealand Dollars. Australia’s December jobs report will also cross the wires. Data out of the country has been tending to underperform relative to economists’ expectations as of late. Such an outcome could increase expectations of an RBA rate cut as AUD/USD falls. Overnight index swaps are pricing in a 34% chance of a cut later this year.
AUD/USD Technical Analysis
The continuation pattern outlined in my weekly Australian Dollar forecast appears to have been broken on the AUD/USD chart below. Typically, a “Pennant” is a continuation pattern. The descent under it may open the door to losses instead. Near-term support is at 0.70211 with resistance around 0.71645.
Each week I conduct a poll to see which Aussie crosses to cover in the technical forecast. You can participate in the poll by following me on twitter @ddubrovskyFX as well as to see timely updates on the Aussie Dollar.
AUD/USD Daily Chart
Chart created in TradingView
US Trading Session
Asia Pacific Trading Session
** All times listed in GMT. See the full economic calendar here
FX Trading Resources
— Written by Daniel Dubrovsky, Junior Currency Analyst for DailyFX.com
To contact Daniel, use the comments section below or @ddubrovskyFX on Twitter
Traders Net-Long Increases from Last Week
65.7% OF TRADERS ARE NET-LONG
EURUSD: Retail trader data shows 65.7% of traders are net-long with the ratio of traders long to short at 1.91 to 1. In fact, traders have remained net-long since Jan 10 when EURUSD traded near 1.1554; price has moved 1.6% lower since then. The percentage of traders net-long is now its highest since Dec 31 when EURUSD traded near 1.1464. The number of traders net-long is 2.0% higher than yesterday and 27.2% higher from last week, while the number of traders net-short is 8.2% lower than yesterday and 4.3% higher from last week.
To gain more insight to how we use sentiment to power our trading, join us for our weekly Trading Sentiment webinar.
EURUSD SENTIMENT CONTINUES TO SUGGEST A BEARISH BIAS
We typically take a contrarian view to crowd sentiment, and the fact traders are net-long suggests EURUSD prices may continue to fall. Traders are further net-long than yesterday and last week, and the combination of current sentiment and recent changes gives us a stronger EURUSD-bearish contrarian trading bias.
Having trouble developing your strategy? Here’s the #1 mistake that traders make.
— Written by Nancy Pakbaz, CFA, DailyFX Research
Oil Risks Larger Recovery as Inverse Head-and-Shoulders Takes Shape
Oil Talking Points
Oil prices remain bid even as the International Monetary Fund (IMF) reduces its global growth forecast for 2019 and 2020, and the ongoing efforts by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) to stabilize the energy market may spur a larger recovery in crude as an inverse head-and-shoulders formation takes shape.
Oil Risks Larger Recovery as Inverse Head-and-Shoulders Takes Shape
Fresh comments from OPEC Secretary-General Mohammad Barkindo suggest the group will continue to cut production over the coming months as the official insists that the ‘the market has started to respond positively’ at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, and the current environment raises the risk for higher crude prices as Mr. Barkindo goes onto say that ‘we are beginning to see very sharp reductions in supply.’
In fact, OPEC and its allies may curb production throughout 2019 as updates from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) show field production climbing to 11,900K in the week ending January 11 after holding steady at 11,700K for three consecutive weeks, and the group may continue to combat the stickiness in Non-OPEC supply especially as Russia Minister of Energy, Alexander Novak¸ endorses a price range of $55-65bbl.
With that said, the advance from the December-low ($42.36) may gather pace as oil prices break out of the downward trend carried over from late-2018, with developments in the Relative Strength Index (RSI) fostering a constructive outlook for crude as the oscillator bounces back from oversold territory and carves a bullish formation. Sign up and join DailyFX Currency Analyst David Song LIVE for an opportunity to discuss potential trade setups.
Oil Daily Chart
- Crude stages a near-term rebound following the failed attempts to test the June 2017-low ($42.05), and oil prices may continue to track higher as an inverse head-and-shoulders formation takes shape.
- In turn, a break/close above the $55.10 (61.8% expansion) to $55.60 (61.8% retracement) region raises the risk for a larger reversal, with the next area of interest coming in around $57.40 (61.8% retracement) followed by the Fibonacci overlap around $59.00 (61.8% retracement) to $59.70 (50% retracement).
For more in-depth analysis, check out the 1Q 2019 Forecast for Oil
Additional Trading Resources
Are you looking to improve your trading approach? Review the ‘Traits of a Successful Trader’ series on how to effectively use leverage along with other best practices that any trader can follow.
Want to know what other markets the DailyFX team is watching? Download and review the Top Trading Opportunities for 2019.
— Written by David Song, Currency Analyst
Follow me on Twitter at @DavidJSong.
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