Asian Session Recap – March 31, 2014

  • Japan’s housing starts up by 1.0% vs. 5.2% expected, 12.3% previous
  • Nikkei closes with 0.9% gain
  • Australia private sector credit showed 0.4% uptick
  • German retail sales up by 1.3% in February
  • Swiss KOF barometer, euro zone flash CPI, UK net lending data coming up

After gapping over the weekend, most forex pairs were off to a quiet start this week with EUR/USD moving sideways above 1.3750 and USD/JPY holding steady around 102.85. Other yen pairs also saw a bit of quiet trading, despite data released from Japan. Housing starts showed a 1.0% gain, weaker compared the consensus of a 5.2% increase and the previous period’s 12.3% jump.

Improved economic data from Australia helped AUD/USD stay afloat during the Asian trading session, as private sector credit saw a 0.4% uptick and HIA new home sales showed a 4.6% increase. The euro also drew support from stronger than expected German retail sales data, which showed a 1.3% rise instead of the estimated 0.3% decline.

In today’s London trading session, Switzerland is set to print its KOF economic barometer and possibly show an improvement from 2.03 to 2.08, which might allow USD/CHF to resume its selloff. Also due today is the U.K. net lending to individuals data, which could climb from 2.1 billion GBP to 2.3 billion GBP. Later on, the euro zone will release its CPI flash estimate and probably show a 0.6% uptick in price levels. Weaker than expected CPI might lead to further declines for euro pairs, as traders could start pricing in dovish expectations for this week’s ECB interest rate decision.

See also:

U.S. Session Recap

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