U.S. Session Recap – December 20, 2013

  • U.S. home sales weaker than expected at 4.90M vs. 5.04M
  • Philly Fed index climbed from 6.5 to 7.0, short of 10.3 consensus
  • U.K. GfK consumer confidence down from -12 to -13
  • BOJ interest rate decision coming up

The U.S. dollar widened its lead against the other major currencies, thanks to the recent Fed decision to reduce bond purchases by $10 billion. However, its gains were limited as housing and manufacturing data both came in weaker than expected. The U.S. home sales report printed a 4.90M figure instead of the estimated 5.04M reading while the Philly Fed index came in at 7.0, lower than the projected 10.3 reading.

Earlier today, the U.K. reported a decline in consumer confidence, as the GfK index slipped from -12 to -13 instead of improving to the estimated -11 figure. There are no other major reports set for release in today’s Asian trading session.

In the next few hours, the BOJ will make its monetary policy statement and probably make no changes to their current easing program. Watch out for remarks from BOJ Governor Kuroda emphasizing that they’re ready to boost their asset purchases if necessary, as this could lead to further yen selling.

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