London Session Recap – February 21, 2014

  • U.K. Retail Sales weak-than-expected: -1.5% vs. -1.0% forecast
  • U.K. Public Borrowing beats forecast but weak; -4.7B GBP vs. -8B GBP forecast; 12.1B GBP previous
  • Canadian CPI and Retail Sales data at 1:30 pm GMT
  • U.S. Existing Home Sales data at 3:00 pm GMT

The big event of the morning London session was the U.K retail sales data, which came in weaker-than-expected. The weakness was partly attributed to the cold weather, with most components of the number down with the exception of household goods.  Also, the December number was revised down to 2.5% vs. its original read of 2.6%.

The reaction in Sterling was initially negative, but it was quickly faded within the first hour of release; the British pound is currently up against most majors at the moment: GBP/JPY is up 54 pips (+0.32%) to 170.78; GBP/USD is up 23 pips (+0.14%) to 1.6670; and EUR/GBP is currently down 9 pips (-0.11%) to .8225.

We also saw more Loonie selling, sparked by Wednesday’s weak wholesale sales number (-1.4% vs. -0.4% forecast). It looks like it’ll be another down day for the Canadian dollar as it’s still taking a whooping against most of the majors: CAD/JPY is down 34 pips (-0.37%) to 91.68; USD/CAD is up 63 pips (+0.57%) to 1.1160; EUR/CAD is up 80 pips (+0.56%) to 1.5305.

Coming up for the final trading session of the week, forex traders will be mainly watching a combo of Canadian and U.S. data.

Canadian Consumer Price Index and retail sales data will be out at 1:30 pm GMT.  The consumer inflation data is looking to tick a bit higher than the previous month’s numbers (headline m/m 0.1% vs. -0.2% forecast), but expectations for the retail sales number are forecasted to be weaker (headline m/m -0.4% vs. 0.6% forecast).  However it plays out, volatility for the CAD will most likely remain higher on the day.

And to close out London trading, we’ll get the U.S. existing home sales data at 3:00 pm GMT.  This can spark a bit of volatility for the Greenback, and if this week’s earlier housing data is any indication of what we may see, then it’s not likely to be good for Dollar bulls.  Of course, we won’t know until then, so be ready and stay focused!

See also:

Asian Session Recap

U.S. Session Recap

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