ForexLive Americas FX news wrap: Loonie rallies on retail sales, oil and trade hopes
Forex news for North American trade on February 22, 2019:
- Canada December retail sales -0.1% m/m vs -0.3% expected
- EU said to prepare to hit Xerox, Caterpillar and Samsonite if US puts tariffs on cars
- Trump says deal with China more likely than not
- Trump/Xi will ultimately make the biggest decisions on trade
- Fed's Quarles appropriate to keep B/S big enough to buffer reserve shocks
- Fed's Harker: We are not far from an efficient level of balance sheet
- Baker Hughes US oil rig count 853 vs 857 prior
- UK cabinet ministers want May to step down in May
- Fed's Clarida: We will review new tools we haven't used before like capping Treasury yields
- Fed's Bullard: Connection between low unemployment and prices looks weak
- ECB's Draghi: Being outside the EU might not lead to greater sovereignty
- Fed's Daly: We should be vigilant on upside and downside inflation risks
- ECB's Villeroy: Precise, focused mandate makes ECB more accountable
- Fed's Williams: Phillips Curve is 'alive and kicking'
- USDA official: Trade talks 'positive' but still no clarity on IP and tech transfers
- BOJ's Kuroda: 'Of course' will consider additional easing if economy loses momentum
- Belgian January business confidence -1.7 vs -1.5 prior
- Gold up $4 to $1328
- WTI crude up 14-cents to $57.10 after hitting $57.81
- S&P 500 up 18 points to 2792
- US 10-year yields down 4 bps to 2.65%
- CAD leads, EUR lags
First off, ignore all the central bank speak because there was a lot of talk but none of it moved markets or taught us something we didn't know already. Kuroda shifted a bit to the dovish side but how far can he really go?
The Canadian retail sales data early was the market mover and it came just after a ramp in oil prices. The loonie climbed afterwards, in part due to some positive details. USD/CAD was at 1.3225 ahead of the data and sank to 1.3135 in a steady move. Part of it came late on positive rumblings about US-China trade and more talk of steel/aluminum tariffs being lifted.
The China headlines were positive with Trump saying a deal was likely and nothing to suggest caution other than more chatter on IP earlier in the day. What was a bit of a surprise was the cool market reaction as stock sold off at first. The whole thing is starting to look a bit like a 'sell the fact' trade.
Cable was hit just as North American trade was ramping up and quickly fell 50 pips to 1.2968 before battling back to 1.3075 into the London fix. That was the North American high as it drifted down to 1.3053 late. There were no major developments on Brexit but talk of rebellion and parliament pushing a delay on Article 50 are mounting.
USD/JPY and EUR/USD both finished virtually flat on the day. USD/JPY had made a move in Europe but gave it all back early in North American trade, in part due to the fall in Treasury yields. Draghi's comments had little substance and were ignored.
Have a great weekend.