The US dollar showed weakness against most currencies as the data proved weak. Is this a change of direction? Mark Carney’s and Janet Yellen’s speeches, US Building Permits, and rate decisions in Canada and the Eurozone stand out. These are the major events on forex calendar. Here is an outlook of the top events for this week.
Last week U.S. Retail sales and Philly Fed Manufacturing Index missed expectations reducing chances for a Fed rate hike this year. Retail sales report inched up 0.1% while expected a 0.2% gain. Philadelphia Manufacturing Index contracted for the second month in October. The better inflation numbers allowed the dollar to recover, especially against the euro, which was hit by its own central bank. Commodity currencies were mixed, each to its own, with the Aussie being the weaker link. Let’s start:
- Mark Carney speaks: Tuesday, 10:00. BOE Governor Mark Carney will speak in London. Consumer prices have dropped 0.1% in September, putting further pressure on Bank of England governor Mark Carney to push prices up in order to reach the inflation target of 2.0%. Furthermore, additional downside risks such as Global weaknesses and domestic economy still exist. Market volatility is expected.
- US Building Permits: Tuesday, 12:30. The number of building permits edged up 3.5% in August to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.17 million, following 1.13 million in July. Economists expected a smaller rise to an annual rate of 1.15 million. On a yearly base, the number of permits were up 12.5% compared to August 2014 indicating a positive trend in the housing sector, despite the slower release of housing starts. The number of permits are expected to reach 1.16 million tis time.
- Janet Yellen speaks: Tuesday, 15:00. Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen will speak in Washington DC. Yellen stated at the FOMC press conference that despite postponing the rate hike in September, she still sees a rate rise in 2015. However, the climate among policymakers has changed. Two FOMC members voiced their objection for a rate hike in 2015 and Yellen may have to face multiple dissents from the dovish wing of the FOMC. Market volatility is expected.
- Canadian rate decision: Wednesday, 14:00. The Bank of Canada maintained its interest rate at 0.5% on its September meeting, noting the previous two rate cuts in January and July were still boosting economic growth. However, global market uncertainty, especially in China, continues to trouble policymakers and exporters alike. Economists reduced their expectations of a rate cut in October to a 19% from a 32% chance beforehand.
- Eurozone rate decision: Thursday, 11:45. The European Central Bank kept its interest rates at record lows in September. The European Central Bank downgraded its inflation forecast to 1.1% next year, leaving the door open for an expansion of its bond-buying program. Draghi said the quantitative easing program, could run “beyond” its original deadline of September 2016. However, the Governing Council is not too concerned with the low inflation levels, claiming it is the temporary effect of the slump in oil prices.
- US Unemployment Claims: Thursday, 12:30. The number of new claims for U.S. state unemployment benefits dropped by 7,000 to 255,000 last week, the lowest level in 42 years. The better than expected release followed a 263,000 reading in the week before. The four-week moving average also hit the lowest rate since 1973 and continuing claims for the previous week fell to their lowest in 15 years, indicating the US labor market remains resilient. The number of jobless claims is expected to reach 266,000 this week.
That’s it for the major events this week. Stay tuned for coverage on specific currencies
*All times are GMT.