FX Fixates on US GDP

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Market Drivers July 27, 2018
BOJ comes into JGB market again
All eyes on US GDP
Nikkei 0.56% Dax 0.18%
Oil $69/bbl
Gold $1223/oz.
Bitcoin $7950

Europe and Asia:
AUD AU PPI 1.5% vs, 1.7%

North America:
USD GDP 8:30

FX was stuck in tight ranges in quiet end of week trading as markets awaited the key event of the week looking to the US session for the first print of US Q2 GDP.

The dollar was mildly bid against the euro with EURUSD hitting a low of 1.1625 in morning European dealing, but USDJPY remained closed to 111.00 level as even BOJ intervention failed to move the pair much. For the second day in five BOJ intervened in the JGB market capping off any rise in yields to its 10 basis point target. The pair popped to 111.15 off the news but then retreated to 111.00 once again.

In economic news the only report of note was the Australian PPI data which came in softer than expected at 1.5% vs, 1.7% eyed confirming that price pressures Down Under remain muted. With both CPI and PPI readings well with the 2% range the RBA has little need to tighten policy in the foreseeable future and as a result, Aussie retreated below the .7400 handle once again and could even test key support at .7300 should dollar strength resume in earnest after today’s GDP print.

US GDP is expected to come in at 4.1% versus prior quarter’s 2.0% reading, but the big pop is already priced in and only a print of 4.4% or higher would really move the market today. Ahead of the report traders will monitor Trump ’s feed given his propensity for leaking government data ahead of the release time. Yesterday the market was full of headlines that Trump predicted a strong reading with some reporters even suggesting that he was expecting a 4.5% print or better. However, the final GDP summary is not compiled by the BEA until late Thursday night US time, so any statement by the President was pure conjecture.

Still, all eyes will be on the lookout for an early tweetstorm, though given the fallout from his prior leaking of US employment data the President may be prevented by his aides from revealing the news before its official release time.

Regardless of the number the US GDP data is inherently backward-looking data point so there is doubt as to how much impact it may have today. Most recent data has shown a marked slowdown in activity especially in the housing sector and in consumer retail spending as well. Therefore unless the report is a massive beat to the upside the market reaction could be contained, but a strong read and a jump in the core price advance beyond the 2.2% level forecast, could certainly boost the buck as the day proceeds with USDJPY looking to retake 111.50 while EURUSD could test the 1.1600 support as the day proceeds.

Boris Schlossberg
Managing Director

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