Aussie edges lower as US economy expands in 2nd quarter

Australian Dollar:

The Australian dollar edged back below 0.73 through trade on Thursday as investors looked to lengthen USD holdings on expectations the Federal Reserve will begin raising rates come September. The world’s largest economy expanded 2.3% through the second quarter satisfying calls that the sluggish first quarter expansion was merely an anomaly and short term slowdown. The stronger USD forced commodity prices lower and the Australian dollar followed touching intraday lows of 0.7253 before finding support. Attentions now turn to a quarterly PPI report, US labour cost and Chinese Manufacturing PMI for direction into the weekly close and next week’s RBA meeting.

We expect a range today of 0.7180 – 0.7350

 

New Zealand Dollar:

The New Zealand dollar found little support through trade on Thursday as investors rallied behind the Greenback on reports the world’s largest economy expanded throughout the second quarter. The US economies lethargic first quarter was always seen as anomaly by Fed and Thursday’s GDP print affirmed their position, increasing expectations the FOMC will amend the current monetary policy stance come September. Touching intraday lows of 0.6565 the Kiwi found support and opens this morning buying 0.6612 US cents. Attentions now turn to domestic business confidence, US employment cost and Chinese manufacturing data for direction into the weekly close.  

We expect a range today of 0.6530 – 0.6680

 

Great British Pound:

The Great British Pound struggled to hold onto the 1.56 handle Thursday as diverging monetary policy expectations saw investors lengthen USD holdings. Advance GDP numbers showed the world’s largest economy expanded 2.3% through the 3 months since March 31st and affirmed Federal Reserve comments the economy had overcome a sluggish first quarter. With many analysts now anticipating a September rate adjustment the gap between Bank of England and Fed monetary policy plans appears to be widening. Attentions turn offshore Friday with nothing of note on the domestic docket. US labour market costs will be of primary focus and a strong print will only strengthen calls the labour market has recovered and could help fuel a longer term consumer driven inflationary push.

We expect a range today of 2.1300 – 2.1500 

 

Majors:

The U.S dollar continued its upward push Thursday touching one week highs when measured against a basket of major currency counterparts. Second quarter GDP data showed the world’s largest economy had recovered from a lethargic and sluggish start to the year expanding 2.3% in the 3 months since March 31st. While the print fell below analyst expectations the uptick and rapid recovery lends support to the Federal Reserve’s comments on Wednesday where in chairwoman Janet Yellen suggested the economy had “overcome a first quarter slowdown”. The Dollar index rallied while the Greenback touched 7 week highs against the Japanese Yen and the Euro feel to a one week low of 1.0893. The 19 nation shared currency came under increased selling pressure as Spanish inflation and economic growth remains sluggish and German unemployment unexpectedly rose, while the worlds lender of last resort (the IMF) reportedly refused to re-join debt burden talks with Greece until widespread reform measure are implemented. Attentions now turn to a US employment cost index report as a key indicator of labour market strength. A strong read would suggest bargaining power for workers and cement recent labour market gains leading a consumer driven inflationary push and fuelling expectations the Federal Reserve will increase the benchmark cash rate come September.

 

Data releases:

AUD: PPI Q/Q and Private Sector Credit m/m

NZD: ANZ Business Confidence

JPY: Housing Starts y/y

GBP: No Data

EUR: German Retail Sales, French Consumer Spending, Italian Monthly Unemployment, CPI Flash Estimate, EMU Unemployment Rate and Italian Prelim CPI.

USD: Employment Cost Index, Chicago PMI, Revised UoM Consumer Sentiment and Revised UoM Inflation Expectations.

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