Asian Session Recap – May 21, 2014

  • Australian Westpac consumer sentiment down by 6.8%
  • Australia’s wage price index up by 0.7% for Q1
  • New Zealand credit card spending increased by 3.2%
  • BOJ kept monetary policy unchanged for now
  • Nikkei ends 0.24% lower for the day
  • Euro zone current account and consumer confidence data due
  • BOJ press conference scheduled within the next few hours
  • BOE minutes to show less hawkish bias?

Got plenty of economic reports released in today’s Asian forex trading session, with the Australian dollar and the Japanese yen showing some big moves in the past few hours. AUD/USD and AUD/JPY continued their slide following the release of the Westpac consumer sentiment data, which printed a 6.8% decline in confidence. Australia’s wage price index logged in a 0.7% gain for the first quarter of the year, slightly weaker compared to the estimated 0.8% increase.

Over in New Zealand, credit card spending reportedly increased by an annualized 3.2% for April while the previous month’s figure was revised down from 8.1% to 7.6%. NZD/USD extended its slide after the release, edging closer to the .8550 minor psychological support as of this writing.

Meanwhile, the BOJ decided to keep monetary policy unchanged for now as expected. BOJ Governor Kuroda noted that they are expecting gains in capital expenditure and this upbeat remark was enough to push USD/JPY to a low of 101.12. The BOJ press conference, which is scheduled within the next few hours, should shed more light on this optimistic forecast and whether or not the BOJ is still open to further QE.

Brace yourselves for more forex price action in today’s London trading session, as the BOE is set to release the minutes of its latest monetary policy meeting. Traders are interested to find out if central bankers will still maintain a positive outlook for the U.K. economy given the recent slowdown and the downbeat BOE Inflation Report. Also due today are the euro zone current account balance and consumer sentiment figures, with weaker than expected results likely to push the euro back in selloff mode. Stay on your toes!

U.S. Session Recap

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