US DATA IN THE HEADLINES FOR SECOND STRAIGHT DAY
The US economy will be front and centre on Thursday, with the economic calendar set to deliver a steady stream of market-moving reports. Eurozone data and monetary policy considerations are also expected to influence investor sentiment.
The day begins at 06:30 GMT with a report on French unemployment. Ninety minutes later, the Spanish government will release headline inflation figures for the month of January.
Monetary policy watchers will be keeping a close eye on a speech by Yves Mersch at 08:15 GMT. Mersch serves on the European Central Bank’s Executive Board.
European trade data will dominate the headlines over the next hour, with the Italian government and Eurostat set to deliver official data releases. The Eurozone trade surplus is forecast to narrow slightly in December to €22.4 billion from €22.5 billion the month before.
Central bank governors Peter Praet and Sabine Lautenschlager are also scheduled to deliver speeches later in the day.
Shifting gears to North America, the US Labor Department will report on producer inflation and initial jobless claims in two separate reports at 13:30 GMT. The New York Federal Reserve Bank will also unveil the latest Empire State Manufacturing Index for February. Meanwhile, the Philadelphia Fed will also unveil its latest manufacturing survey at the same time.
The Federal Reserve will issue its monthly industrial production report at 14:15 GMT. The January reading is expected to show a 0.2% monthly increase, following a 0.9% gain the previous month.
Finally, the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) are expected to unveil the housing market index at 15:00 GMT. The monthly report is expected to show strong demand for domestic real estate.
On the Canadian side of the border, ADP Inc. will report on private sector payrolls for the month of January.
Europe’s common currency rose sharply against the dollar on Wednesday, with the EUR/USD adding nearly % to trade at its highest level in over a week. The pair was last seen trading comfortably in the mid-1.2400 region, where it was eyeing the psychological 1.2500 resistance level. A clean move above 1.2520 is needed to ensure a bullish breakout for the euro.
Cable also took advantage of a crumbling dollar Wednesday, surging 120 pips to retake the 1.4000 handle. The bulls are now eyeing the 1.4077 resistance area as the next major target. This level is attainable insofar as the dollar remains in a downtrend.
The Canadian dollar broke sharply higher on Wednesday, with the USD/CAD plunging 100 pips. The pair traded below 1.2500 for the first time in a week, as the greenback continued to unwind its recent gains. The pair is now testing immediate support at 1.2494.