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AFEX Market Watch Mon 30th Jan 2017
GBP After last weeks continued push higher for sterling, this week sees the important Bank of England (BoE) inflation report on Thursday and the Monetary Policy Committee vote on interest rates. We expect no change in rates but the inflation report will be important as the market is well aware that inflation has been jumping higher since last June, the market will be trying to gauge how far inflation can rise before the BoE hikes rates.
The Euro was out of the spotlight last week, this week will see ECB president Draghi speaking on Tuesday along with EU inflation data, and first estimate Q4 GDP due for release the same day as well. Eurozone Services PMI and retail sales are due out of Friday. The market will start to look towards the Dutch elections shortly, the current theme being peddled is that the election may see the most votes for the right wing anti EU Freedom Party but no chance of actually being able to form a Government. That may be about to change with the sudden rise of another anti-establishment party, Forum for Democracy headed by Thierry Baudet. He has said that he would be prepared to form a coalition with Freedom Party, this of course could see an anti-Euro Government in power. Dutch political analyst Claes de Vreese commented that 70% of the Dutch electorate is undecided, and that is a very dangerous number for Europe’s ruling elite.
The Dollar ended last week on a soft note as US GDP came in below expectations at 1.9% QoQ . Although aiming for three rate hikes this year, the Fed is still data dependent and last week’s data will not be pushing them to hike rates. In this case Wednesday’s FOMC decision should see no change in interest rates, but the following statement will again be important. The Dollar was weaker today in early Asian trading after US yields were softer and the market took in the effects of Trumps immigration extreme vetting policy. The big economic number data release this week are non-farm payrolls and average hourly wages on Friday, which if stronger than expected will get the market thinking of Fed rate hikes to come.
The CAD had a good week last week as it emerged that Canada was not the target of President Trump’s NAFTA renegotiation, and also the signing of the Keystone pipeline was a benefit for them. Canadian interest rates moved in favour of the Loonie as well which will make BoC Governor Poloz’s speech late on Tuesday of interest. The big economic figure for Australia will be the trade figures due for release on Thursday morning.
Regarding Japan, President Trump confirmed the importance of the US-Japan alliance and economic and investment ties as well as announcing a summit between the two on February 10th.