Previous session overview
The euro and dollar rebounded against the yen in overnight trading, as an uptick in Chinese equities sent traders back toward riskier currencies.
The European Central Bank takes center stage Thursday morning. Its governing council kept the key refinancing rate at 1.0% for the fourth successive month, so most attention will be focused on the accompanying press conference with ECB President Jean-Claude Trichet for clues to the euro zone’s economic health and whether it will announce a timeline for ending its quantitative easing programs.
While the Labor Department released a report on Thursday showing a modest decrease in first-time claims for unemployment benefits in the week ended August 29th, the decrease followed an upward revision to previous week’s initial jobless claims.
The report showed that jobless claims edged down to 570,000 from the previous week’s revised figure of 574,000. Economists had been expecting jobless claims to slip to 564,000 from the 570,000 originally reported for the previous week.
Analysts said the thinly traded summer currency markets remain unsure of whether to trust a global economic turnaround. Mixed economic signals have led investors to trade on risk – heading toward higher-yielding currencies when stock market’s rally, and seeking the safe-haven dollar and yen when stock markets sink.
EURUSD skidding lower again as earlier noted semi-official demand gets filled, along with bids to USD1.4280 or so. Stops warned of sub USD1.4270 as intra-day longs rethink positions in still skittish markets.
USDJPY despite more vigorous action elsewhere, dollar-yen continues to underperform most other pairs, has orbited a narrow range around JPY92.40 since the start of the US session, a recent pop higher stalling at JPY92.50 area just shy of the overnight high. Flows light, an Asian hours dip to JPY91.95 sufficient to gun reported barrier strike and some nearby stops but leaving intact better stops sub JPY91.90. Offers up at JPY93.00. Dollar last at JPY92.50.
Currency investors will be paying attention to several U.S. economic reports released Thursday, including the 8:30 a.m. EDT release of weekly jobless claims, which are expected to improve, and the 10 a.m. EDT release of the Institute of Supply Management survey for non-manufacturing industry.
Looming over the market also is this weekend’s meeting in London of finance ministers from the Group of 20 industrial and developing nations.
Although they aren’t expected to discuss currencies in particular, the market could be affected by any shifts in sentiment on the state of the global economy or any talk of strategies for exiting quantitative easing.
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