Forexlive Americas FX news wrap: Weekly US initial jobless claim show continued softness in the the US jobs market
Forex news for North American trading on February 18, 2021.
- US Treas Sec Yellen says hoping to see progress on stimulus bill in the next 2 weeks
- S&P & NASDAQ post 3 day losing streak. Dow breaks 2-today record close streak
- Crude oil (April contract) dips below 100 hour MA but finds some support at trend line
- ECB Lagarde: 2021 the year of recovery
- Decline in the Treasury general account is bearish for USD - Citi
- US sells 30-year TIPS at -0.040% vs -0.272% prior
- Fauci: UK Covid variant likely will be dominant variant in the US by March
- European traders look to head for the exits
- US weekly crude oil inventories -7257K vs -2150K expected
- Eurozone Feb consumer confidence -14.8 vs -15.0 expected
- ADP Canada January employment -231.2K vs +338K prior
- US January housing starts 1580K vs 1660K expected
- US initial jobless claims 861K vs. 773K estimate
- Canada January Teranet house price index +9.6% vs +9.4% y/y
- Philadelphia Fed business outlook for February 23.1 vs. 20.0 estimate
- The GBP is the strongest and the USD is the weakest as NA traders enter for the day
the weekly initial jobless claims disappointed at the start of the North American session. The claims number came in at 861K vs the estimate of 773K. The prior week was also revised 2 848K from 793K previously reported.
The data this week corresponds with the survey week for the Bureau of Labor Statistics monthly report which will be released the 1st Friday of March. Last month the nonfarm payroll rose by 49,000 which was less than the expectations of 85,000.
While the better retail sales and higher PPI data yesterday still sent US treasury yields lower, the weaker data today from the claims did not deter the US yields from moving higher today. Below is a summary of the ranges and changes. There are a lot of eyes on the bond market.
The higher yield trajectory has had an impact on the equities. Today the major indices all moved to the downside with the Russell 2000 of small-cap stocks leading the way with a -1.67% decline followed by the NASDAQ index at -0.72%. Both the S&P and the Dow industrial average have been faring better of late as funds flow out of the high flying tech stocks, and into the more blue-chip variety. Although today: this is were lower. The Dow industrial average fell for the 1st time in 4 days and broke its today all time high close streak. The S&P and NASDAQ fell for the 4th consecutive day.
In the forex market, the GBP was the runaway strongest of the majors today. The USD had its share of downs and up and back down again, but is ending as the weakest of the majors. The GBPUSD was the biggest mover with a change of 0.84% (to the upside). The GBPUSD reached a high price of 1.39853 which is getting close to the natural resistance target of 1.4000. Other GBP crosses also were solidly higher with the GBPJPY and GBPCAD each of 0.65%, the GBPAUD up 0.63%.
Looking at other currency pairs:
- EURUSD: The EURUSD it is going out for the day near the highs for the day. The pair is also moving closer to its 100 and 200 hour moving averages at 1.2098 and 1.21035 respectively. The high for the day has so far reached 1.20941 just off those levels. A move above the moving averages would tilt the bias even more to the upside. On the downside traders will be eyeing the 1.2080 level as close support. That was the swing high going back to last Friday's trade.
- USDJPY: The USDJPY is closing near the lows for the day at 105.60. That is also near the rising 100 hour moving average at the same level. A move below the 100 hour moving average will also have the 100 day moving average at 105.497 as support. Move below and the bias shifts more to the downside.
- USDCHF. The technical highlight for the USDCHF is it briefly breached the 100 day MA at the highs for the day (at 0.89917). The high reached 0.8994. The inability to move above that level, turned buyers and sellers and the price rotated back toward the 50% retracement of the February trading range at 0.89577. That is about where the price is ending the day. Move below in the new day, should lead to more downside probing with the 100 hour moving average at 0.89336 and the 200 hour moving average at 0.89286.
- Spot gold is closing the session near unchanged. It is trading at $1775.50 that's down $0.60 or -0.5%. Although the dollar is ending lower, the gains in gold on that move up to the high for the day at $1789.67, could not be sustained
- Spot silver has been negative all day and is closing at $-0.36 or -1.32% at $27.02
- WTI crude oil futures is trading down around $1 or -1.57% to $60.20. The high price reached $62.29. The low extended to $59.81.
- Finally bitcoin took a breather today and is trading down $-275 or -0.52% at $52,100. That is still off the low price of $50,875 and closer to the days high price at $52,549.99.