Dollar Gets Its Bid Back

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Market Drivers February 9, 2015

Greek stalemate puts fresh pressure on EUR
UK IP/MP misses on lower oil activity
Nikkei -.33% Europe -0.01%
Oil $52/bbl
Gold $1240/oz.

Europe and Asia:
CNY CPI 0.8% vs. 1.1%
EUR French IP 1.5% vs. 0.3%
GBP UK IP/MP 0.1% vs, 0.3%

North America:
USD Economic Optimism 10:00

Dollar caught a bid today in early European trade as slide in commodity prices, weaker UK data and growing concerns about the Greek crisis all helped to boost the greenback against its major trading partners.

After holding the 1.1300 support level for several days, the EUR/USD broke below the barrier as the negotiations with Greece showed little progress. Although the parties have ostensibly until the start of summer to come to some sort of new arrangement, some analysts believe that Greece only has a few weeks left of cash in its Treasury and with ECB refusing to provide further funds the country made on the verge of financial disaster much sooner than the market thinks.

If Greece does spin out from the Eurozone most market analysts believe that the fallout to the rest of the region will be minimal, but such scenarios are impossible to handicap especially if there are some hidden risks within the system that could materialize as result of Grexit and impact the EUR/USD as a whole. That’s why despite relatively steady trade the euro remains under pressure as markets remain wary of the risk of fracture.

The buck also benefited from weaker commodity prices and softer UK data as oil fell by more than 1% and UK IP/MP figures misses their mark. UK Industrial Production came in at -0.2% versus 0.3% eyed as lower oil production impacted the pair. The news should have little impact on UK Q4 GDP but it was the first economic miss this month and pushed cable lower to test the support at the 1.5200 level in mid morning London trade.

Meanwhile USD/JPY rose steadily through the night popping above the 119.00 barrier as rhetoric from the Fed remains relatively hawkish. Overnight Esther George noted that modest tightening early in the recovery can reduce risk taking, suggesting that US monetary authorities may still view June as a viable date to begin normalizing policy.

The eco calendar is once again barren today with only Economic Optimism on the docket but US traders may choose the extend the dollar rally as it is becoming increasingly clear that US is outperforming the rest of the G-10 universe.

Boris Schlossberg
Managing Director

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