- NZ building consents down by 9.2% vs. 2.0% uptick in October
- NZ ANZ consumer confidence index up from -2.1% to 3.4% in January
- AU MI inflation expectations grew by 4.3% vs. 3.4% gain in December
- U.K. RICS house price balance down from 29% to 24% vs. 32% expected
- AU unemployment rate pops up from 5.7% to 5.8%
- AU employment change shows net gain of 13.5K vs. 10.2K gain expected, 37.1K uptick in November
Forex price action was relatively subdued during the Asian session, as traders braced for today’s ECB policy decision and Trump’s inauguration tomorrow.
Australia’s employment report – The Australian Bureau of Statistics’ (ABS) latest release showed that a net of 13,500 workers had found jobs for the month, higher than the expected 10,200 gain but still a fraction of November’s 37,100 uptick.
The unemployment rate rising from 5.7% to 5.8% (the highest level since June!) gave Aussie bulls bad moments, but they eventually calmed down when they saw that labor force participation rate had also ticked higher from 64.6% to 64.7%.
Full-time employment had also increased by a net of 9,300 for the month, outpacing the 4,200 gain in part-time employment. As Forex Gump pointed in his trading guide, full-time jobs are preferable over part-time employment as they represent more stable income for potential consumers.
A net of 34,000 workers have found full-time employment over the year, which is tiny compared to the 125,500 workers who have found part-time work. This translates to a 0.4% gain in full-time jobs from a year earlier while part-time employment is up by 3.4%. Total employment has risen by 0.8% from a year earlier in December, up from the 0.7% uptick in November.
Mixed equities trading – The Asian bourses failed to trade in a single direction today thanks to country-specific factors.
Nikkei has benefited from Janet Yellen hinting at aggressive interest rate hikes as well as the dollar’s rally yesterday while Australia’s market was supported by a slightly stronger-than-expected employment report and uptick in gold prices.
China’s markets, on the other hand, took hits from low liquidity and profit-taking ahead of the Lunar New Year holidays. The PBoC injected another 100B CNY through 7-day reverse repos and 150B CNY through 28-day reverse repos to boost liquidity ahead of the holidays.
Nikkei is up by 0.92% and Australia’s A SX 200 is up by 0.24% while Hang Seng is down by 0.36% and the Shanghai index is down by 0.22%.
Major Market Movers:
AUD – The Aussie was dragged lower when Australia printed its jobless rate, but soon recovered as traders digested the not-so-terrible details and risk appetite picked up.
AUD/USD slipped to .7494 before shooting back up to .7521 and GBP/AUD hiked to 1.6357 before slipping back down to 1.6326 while AUD/JPY straight up rose by 55 pips (+0.64%) to 86.20 and AUD/NZD shot up by 20 pips (+0.19%) to 1.0533.
USD – The Greenback gained a couple more pips against its major counterparts thanks to Janet Yellen hinting at aggressive rate hikes in the year ahead.
EUR/USD slipped by 33 pips (-0.31%) to 1.0638, USD/JPY rocketed 101 pips (+0.89%) higher to 114.61, GBP/USD fell by 12 pips (-0.10%) to 1.2278, and USD/CHF popped up by 33 pips (+0.33%) to 1.0070.
- 9:15 am GMT: Switzerland’s PPI (0.2% expected, 0.1% previous)
- 10:00 am GMT: Euro Zone current account (29.3B EUR expected, 28.4B EUR previous)
- 1:45 pm GMT: ECB’s monetary policy decision
Bonnie and Clyde, peanut butter and jelly, Kanye West and Kanye West. Some things just go well together.
Head on to Big Pippin’s Daily Chart Art for some pip-locking technical setups!