U.S. Session Forex Recap – Feb. 18, 2015

  • US Empire State mfg index: 7.8 vs. 8.5 expected, 10.0 previous
  • US NAHB housing market index: 55 vs. 58 expected, 57 previous
  • CA foreign securities purchase: -13.55B CAD vs. 5.35B CAD expected, 4.30B CAD previous
  • CHF weakens on SNB’s Jordan’s jawboning
  • AU Westpac MI leading index: 0.1% vs. 0.0% previous
  • China on Spring Festival bank holiday

What a session for forex traders! With US and Canadian markets back in action, investors got busy pricing in different economic reports.

There were tons of potential market movers, starting with the overall yen weakness ahead of the BOJ’s monetary policy statement. Word around the hood is that the BOJ is uncomfortable with the yen’s recent strength.

USD/JPY’s move was most notable with its 49-pip (+0.41%) uptick to 119.26, though EUR/JPY also rose by 47 pips (+0.35%) to 136.17 and GBP/JPY shot up by 82 pips (+0.45%) to 183.24.

Unlike the yen bears, the euro bulls weren’t as hungry for pips yesterday. After showing euro strength in the early London session, EUR/USD slipped by 9 pips (-0.08%) to 1.1418 and EUR/GBP stayed within the .7430 area.

Another big story of the hour was Swiss National Bank’s (SNB) Jordan jawboning the franc. In his speech, he hinted that the economy could lose momentum and that the central bank could cut rates further. Yipes!

USD/CHF shot up 57 pips (+0.61%) to .9364 at the news, while EUR/CHF rose by 59 pips (+0.56%) to 1.0692, its highest level since the SNB shocker last month.

Last but not the least is the Loonie, which gained on the dollar on the back of stronger oil prices. Brent crude oil rose to its 2015 high of $65 per barrel while WTI inched 1.4% higher at $53.53 per barrel.

USD/CAD hit a session high of 1.2447 before settling back down to 1.2373, near its session open price. CAD/JPY also jumped by 38 pips (+0.40%) to 96.39.

Will Asian session forex traders see more volatility today? China’s markets are on a Spring Festival holiday, but the BOJ is set to release its monetary policy decision over the next couple of hours. Watch out for any signs of further easing from the central bank, as it could either extend or reverse the yen’s recent losses.

Good luck and good trading!

See also:

London Session Recap

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