Attention turns to the Eurozone

Written by Ashwin Rattan Thursday, 27 September 2012 06:56
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The announcement of the Spanish 2013 budget, German jobs data, and the release of European confidence measures mean that attention will remain focussed on the Eurozone today and the news is unlikely to be good. The request for a Spanish bailout moves ever closer and could eventually provide some relief but prevarication continues to weigh on sentiment.


US data releases will not provide much solace for markets either, with weak durable goods orders and a revision lower to US Q2 GDP expected to be revealed. All in all, another tough session for markets is in store.


Meanwhile, currencies against the USD continue to look vulnerable, with EUR/USD, AUD/USD, USD/CHF in particular, close to breaching their 200 day moving average levels. USD/JPY has closed below the 78.00 level throughout this week suggesting that the currency pair may be moving into a new lower range. So far, there is little sign of potential FX intervention by the Japanese authorities.


Interestingly USD/JPY has dropped despite a general rebound in the USD, suggesting that it is very difficult for the Japanese authorities to blame the move on a weaker USD this time. Nor is the JPY particularly sensitive to risk aversion at present. For a change the move in the JPY cannot be blamed on a narrowing in US versus Japanese bond yield differentials too as the sensitivity of USD/JPY to yield differentials has dropped to an insignificant level while the US yield advantage has actually widened.


Net securities inflows into Japan have been strong recently however, suggesting either or both repatriation into Japanese fiscal half year end or renewed foreign interest in Japanese portfolio assets are helping the JPY. USD/JPY is expected to run into bids around the 77.10 level.

EUR/GBP has tracked the move lower in EUR/USD, while GBP/USD appears to be showing some resilience despite a generally firmer USD. Renewed Eurozone tensions are helping GBP as investors once again look for relative save havens although many would question whether GBP can really be considered as a safe haven.


With little on the data front in the UK today (only the third reading of Q2 GDP) GBP will be left to follow the travails of the EUR. Notably my models show that EUR/GBP divergence from its short term fair value estimate is growing, implying that the drop in the currency pair is unlikely to persist, with GBP resilience likely to give way over coming sessions. My estimate for short term EUR/GBP fair value is 0.8143. This is corroborated by my GBP/USD quantitative model, which also shows downside risks.


About Mitul Kotecha



I have worked in the financial industry as a strategist/economist for over 16-years in several corporate and investment banks in London.   I have covered a range of financial products including bonds, interest rates, equities and foreign exchange. 


I am currently working in Hong Kong for Crédit Agricole Corporate & Investment Bank, where I am the head of global currency strategy, in charge of a team of analysts providing research and strategy for the bank’s clients and internal trading and sales teams.


I hold an honours degree in economics and a masters degree in economics and finance and have developed a comprehensive knowledge of economic and financial theory during my studies and in my employment.  


I am regularly consulted by the press/media for my views on markets and economies appearing regularly on business channels such as CNBC, Bloomberg TV, Channel News Asia, and Reuters TV.  I am also regularly quoted in various newspapers including the Financial Times and Wall St. Journal as well as various newswires including Reuters, Bloomberg, Associated Press, Dow Jones and many others.


Mitul is the author of the forthcoming Chronology of a Crisis. 

Last modified on Thursday, 27 September 2012 07:06

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