The forex trading headlines for Asia Wednesday 05 February 2014

New Zealand Q4 employment data – strong results

  • Unemployment rate for Q4: 6.0% (expected 6.0%, prior was 6.2%)

  • Employment change for Q4 q/q: 1.1% q/q (expected +0.6%, prior was +6.2%)

  • Employment change for Q4 y/y: 3.0% y/y (expected is +2.4%, prior was +2.4%

  • Participation rate for Q4: 68.9 (expected is 68.6%, prior was 68.6%)

  • Average hourly earnings for Q4: 0.3% q/q (expected is +0.1%, prior was 1.6%)

  • Private wages including overtime for Q4: 0.6% q/q (0.5%, prior was 0.4%)

  • Private wages excluding overtime for Q4: 0.6% q/q (0.5%, prior was 0.4%)

Lets get EUR, GBP and CHF out of the way … all slipped back into their regular Asian session torpor, narrow range bound markets. They all moved against the yen, ’cause the USD/JPY displayed some life.

USD/JPY traded higher in the early Asian going, but didn’t sustain the bid tone beyond the Tokyo open. After testing 101.70/75 it drifted away, dragging yen crosses generally lower with it to settle around 101.50 before Nikkei weakness after the opening hour of trade saw it fill bids at 101.40 and down to 101.25 (23 the low). A post-lunch opening jump back into the opening range for the Nikkei saw USD/JPY test 101.50 again before settling around 40 as of writing.

NZD/USD jumped higher early, even after its strong, strong rally in the prior 24 hours. The catalyst was better employment data (see bullets, above), but resistance ahead of 0.8260 saw it halt its rise. It lost ground over the course of the session after that, back below 0.8200 and settling around there.

AUD/USD slowly lost ground throughout the session, testing 0.8870 for the session lows.