Article Highlights

  • U.S. NFIB small business index down from 93.9 to 92.9 vs. 94.5 forecast
  • Canadian housing starts up from 165K to 213K vs. 181K forecast
  • Canada’s building permits down by 9.8% vs. -2.2% forecast
  • API: Crude oil inventories up by 4.4 million barrels
  • British newspaper The Sun: Queen backs Brexit
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Risk-off vibes seem to be creeping back in the forex market, as higher-yielding currencies bowed down to the safe-havens even with the lack of top-tier data.

Major Events:

Mixed data from Canada – The latest building permits and housing starts reports from Canada painted a mixed picture of the sector, as the former indicated a sharp decline while the latter showed a strong jump.

Building permits slumped 9.8% in January versus the projected 2.2% decline while the previous reading was downgraded to show a 7.7% gain from the initially reported 11.3% increase. Meanwhile, housing starts rose from 165K to 213K in February, outpacing the consensus at 181K.

Crude oil price drop –  According to the American Petroleum Institute, which typically gives a preview of the U.S. crude oil inventories data from the Energy Information Administration (EIA), stockpiles rose by 4.4 million barrels.

The EIA report, which is due today, is expected to show an increase of 3 million barrels after the previous week’s jump of 10.4 million barrels. Looks like the supply buildup ain’t over, forex fellas!

WTI crude oil dropped from the $38/barrel area to the $36.74/barrel level while Brent crude oil sank from $41.37/barrel to $39.58/barrel.

Major Currency Movers:

CAD – The Loonie continued to trail behind crude oil action, as the Canadian currency gave up ground when Black Crack prices dropped.

USD/CAD bounced off its 1.3275 low to a high of 1.3412, CAD/JPY retreated from 85.00 levels to a low of 83.84, EUR/CAD pulled up to a high of 1.4827, and GBP/CAD rallied back above the 1.9000 handle.

USD – Thanks to a return in risk aversion, the Greenback was able to recoup some of its previous losses against its forex rivals.

EUR/USD found resistance at the 1.1050 area then fell to the 1.1000 mark again, GBP/USD turned upon hitting a high of 1.4284 then retreated to the 1.4200 support zone, USD/CHF bounced to a high of .9972 but USD/JPY continued to drop towards 112.50.

Watch Out For:

  • 11:30 pm GMT: Australian Westpac consumer sentiment (4.2% previous)
  • 12:30 am GMT: Australian home loans (-2.7% expected, +2.7% previous)
  • 6:00 am GMT: Japanese preliminary machine tool orders y/y (-17.2% previous)

See also:

Asian Session Recap

London Session Recap

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