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RATING SUMMARY: Focus remains on ratings agency action on sovereign borrowers as they continue to play catch-up to the debt crisis.
Fitch Ratings downgraded Portugal's ratings 1 notch on Dec 23 to 'A+' from 'AA-', outlook negative. However, the move plays catch-up to decision by Moody's to placed Portugal's A1 rating on review for possible downgrade. However, both Moody's & Fitch are still lagging, where rating is still 2 notches above S&P's A- (credit watch). Earlier this week, Fitch Ratings placed Greece's 'BBB-' rating on Rating Watch Negative (RWN). A RWN indicates that there is a heightened probability that Greece's sovereign ratings will be downgraded and the review, which is expected to be completed during Jan 2011. Moody's also placed Greece's "Ba1" ratings on review for possible downgrade on Dec 16, but this merely plays catch-up to S&P decision to put Greece's "BB+" rating on CreditWatch with negative implications on Dec 2. Fitch is still lagging on Greek rating at BBB-, i.e. still 1 notch above junk, whilst S&P & Moody's have Greece in non-investment grade.
FRANCE DATA: Jobseekers registered in November surprised on the upside with a rebound of 21,300 or 0.8%, more than retracing the 20,300 downturn in October.
European session review: the euro may go under pressure.

Jean-Claude Trichet will retire as European Central Bank president next October with the euro area still needing record-low interest rates, according to economists who accurately predicted the region’s monetary policy this year.

The Frakfurt-based central bank will keep its key interest rate unchanged throughout 2011 amid low inflation, moderate growth and persisting fallout from the sovereign-debt crisis, said 12 of 17 economists. The sample was taken among forecasters who correctly anticipated in January that the ECB’s benchmark would stay this year at 1 percent.

The euro may fall to a four-month low against the yen should it drop below major support levels established in the past month, said Tsutomu Soma, a bond and currency dealer at Okasan Securities Co.

Support at 108.35 yen marks the euro’s weakest point on Nov. 30, and the 108.49 yen level represents an ascending trend line that connects the lows of Aug. 24, Sept. 8 and Dec. 23. Daily momentum indicators such as the moving average convergence/divergence, or MACD, also show the euro is likely to weaken versus the yen, Soma said.

“The euro looks pretty bad against the yen on the charts,” Tokyo-based Soma said in an interview. “The bias is on the downside, with a clear break below 108.35 yen targeting the August low of 105.44 yen.”

Europe’s cerrency rose to 109.04 yen at 9:53 a.m. in Tokyo from 108.74 yen in New York yesterday, when it fell to 108.46 yen, the least since Dec. 1. The 105.44 yen level reached on Aug. 24 was the weakest since July 2001. The euro has sunk 18 percent against Japan’s currency this year, set for the biggest loss since 2008.

The euro’s MACD against the yen was minus 0.7102 today, below the signal line of minus 0.5405, based on data compiled by Bloomberg. The MACD is calculated by subtracting the 26-day exponential moving average from the 12-day average. The signal line is a nine-day exponential moving average of the MACD , and provides buy and sell signals to some analysts.

In technical analysis, investors and analysts study charts of trading patterns and prices to forecast changes in a security, commodity, currency or index. Support is where buy orders may be clustered while resistance refers to a level where there may be sell orders.

“The economic data has been looking pretty reasonable and there’s nothing data-wise or news-wise that’s particularly negative. There’s probably a bit of profit taking going on at the end of the calendar year.”

EUR/USD: the pair shown high in the field of $1.3150

GBP/USD: the pair grown in around $1,5460.

USD/JPY: the pair bargained within the limits of Y82,90-Y83,20.

There is no data scheduled for today. 

Orders desk:

Offers: $1.3150, $1.3180/85, $1.3190/00, $1.3235/45, $1.3270/80
Bids: $1.3080/70, $1.3055/50, $1.3000, $1.2970/50

EUR/USD tested $1.3140/50

Extends recovery, Thursday's lows of $1.3055, to $1.3146, with earlier reported offers placed between $1.3140/50 so far able to counter. Rate currently trades back at $1.3138. Above $1.3150 and rate can extend toward $1.3180/85. Support $1.3100/1.3090.

CHINA, PBOC Hu: Will use differential reserve requirement ratios
  • Warns on pressure to control liquidity;
  • Notes importance of normalizing money supply;
  • Global economic recovery is slow, unstable;
  • Sound monetary policy needed vs asset bubbles
CHINA: PBOC Hu warns inflation expectations rising
Reiterates prudent monetary policy stance
Asian session: The dollar is poised for a weekly loss against yen

The yen fell against most major peers on prospects gradual recoveries in the world’s largest economies will support global growth while forcing central banks in Japan and the U.S. to keep interest rates near zero.
The euro gained for the first time in eight days versus Japan’s currency before Dec. 29 reports forecast to show European inflation accelerated last month and German consumer prices rose.
The dollar is poised for a weekly loss against 12 of its 16 most-traded counterparts as currency volatility fell, spurring investments in riskier assets. Reports next week may reveal confidence among U.S. consumers improved even as housing remained the economy’s weak link.

EUR/USD: the pair shown high in the field of $1.3150

GBP/USD: the pair grown in around $1,5460.

USD/JPY: the pair bargained within the limits of Y82,90-Y83,20.

Today is no data.

Forex: Thursday's review

The dollar fell against the yen for a fourth straight day in the longest stretch of declines in more than two months as reports showed the U.S. economic recovery is gathering pace, fueling demand for the Japanese currency to fund investments in growth.
The U.S. currency weakened against its Australian and New Zealand counterparts as orders for capital equipment rose in November and initial unemployment insurance claims fell in the latest week, a signal the world’s largest economy is speeding up. The euro erased losses against the dollar and the Swiss franc weakened on speculation the Swiss National Bank had intervened to curb the strength of the nation’s currency. A spokesman for the central bank declined to comment.
The British currency rebounded from near a three-month low after BOE Markets Director Paul Fisher told the Daily Telegraph the U.K.’s borrowing costs will “head back to a normalized position” of 5 percent.
The yen gained for a fourth day versus the dollar, its longest streak since Oct. 8, on signs China is taking more measures to cool growth.
New Zealand’s currency surged as Finance Minister Bill English said the nation’s economic expansion will accelerate next year.

EUR/USD: the pair shown low in the field of $1,3060 then become stronger.

GBP/USD: the pair bargained within the limits of $1,5370-$ 1,5430.

USD/JPY: on results of yesterday's session the pair decreased below mark Y83,00.

Today is no data

US stocks. Thursday's review

A big dose of data failed to draw market participants to action today. In turn, the stock market slogged along listlessly before it settled with a slight loss.
There was plenty of data out ahead of the open, but none of it produced any real reaction among premarket participants. Among the items, personal income increased 0.3% while consumption increased 0.4%. The Briefing.com consensus called for respective increases of 0.2% and 0.5%. Personal income in the prior month had increased 0.4% while spending had increased 0.7% in the same time.
Durable goods orders for November fell 1.3%, which is worse than the 1.1% decline that had been generally expected, but not as bad as the prior month's 3.1% drop. Excluding transportation, durable goods orders increased 2.4% in November. They were widely expected to increase by just 0.8% after they fell 1.9% in the prior month.
Initial jobless claims for the week ended December 18 were also out ahead of the open. They totaled 420,000, which is in step with the 424,000 initial claims that had been expected and down slightly from the tally of 423,000 that was recorded for the previous week.
Continuing claims came in 4.06 million, down about 100,000 from the prior week. Its steady downtrend since summer is largely the result of fewer initial claims and the expiration of unemployment benefits, rather than actual hiring.
Even after trade opened participants were largely unresponsive to the University of Michigan's final December Consumer Sentiment Survey, which improved slightly to a five-month best of 74.5, up from 74.2.
New home sales were a bit disappointing. They increase 5.5% in November to an annualized rate of 290,000, but that was still a bit less than the rate of 300,000 that had been expected. Many remain concerned that recent increases in the 10-year Treasury yield, which is now near 3.40%, has put added pressure on housing demand.
Despite all of that data, many traders and investors couldn't be pulled off of their couches or away from shopping centers ahead of Christmas weekend. In turn, trading volume barely broke 600 million shares on the NYSE.
Materials stocks made the best gains of the day. They advanced 0.4%, despite mixed action among commodities and basic materials prices.
Oil was a leader among commodities. February contracts closed pit trade with crude oil priced 1.1% higher at $91.51 per barrel. Prior to that, the energy component set a fresh two-year high at $91.63 per barrel.
Oil's climb came partly in response to the dollar's narrow loss of 0.2%, which came after the greenback had made a couple of modest moves during the day. The dollar's downturn came even after analysts at Fitch downgraded the debt of both Portugal and Hungary in direct recognition of the ongoing fiscal and financial troubles that continue to face countries in the eurozone and its periphery.

Tech on USD/JPY

Resistance 3:Y83.90 (Dec 21 high, 61,8 % FIBO Y84,5-Y82,85)
Resistance 2:Y83.50 (38.2 % FIBO Y84,5-Y82,85)
Resistance 1:Y83.20 (session high)
Current price: Y82.97
Support 1:Y82.80/90 (Dec 14 low, 38,2 % FIBO Y80,20-Y84,50)
Support 2:Y82.30 (Dec 7 low, 50,0 % FIBO Y80,20-Y84,50)

Support 3:Y81.90 (61,8% FIBO Y80,20-Y84,50)

Comments: the pair remains under pressure. The nearest support - Y82,80/90. Below losses up are possible to Y82.30. The nearest resistance - Y83,20. Above growth is possible to Y83.50.

Tech on USD/CHF

Resistance 3: Chf0.9720 (Dec 6 low, Dec 17-20 high)
Resistance 2: Chf0.9665 (Dec 23 high)
Resistance 1: Chf0.9620 (МА(200) for Н1)
Current price: Chf0.9577
Support 1: Chf0.9500 (Dec 22-23 low)
Support 2: Chf0.9460 (low of October)

Support 3: Chf0.9400 (psychological mark)

Comments: the pair bargains below a mark Сhf0,9600. The nearest support Chf0,9500. Below loss may extend to Chf0.9450. The nearest resistance Chf0,9620. Above is located Chf0.9665.

Tech on GBP/USD

Resistance 3: $ 1.5560 (Dec 21 high, 38,2% FIBO $1,5910-$ 1,5360)
Resistance 2: $ 1.5490 (Dec 22 high)
Resistance 1: $ 1.5450 (session high)
Current price: $1.5430
Support 1 : $1.5350 (Dec 22 high)
Support 2 : $1.5300 (low of September)
Support 3 : $1.5120 (Jul 21 low)

Comments: tech hasn't hanged. The nearest resistance - $1,5450. Above growth is possible to $1,5490. The nearest support - $1,5360. Below decrease is possible to $1.5300.

Tech on EUR/USD

Resistance 2: $ 1.3360 (Dec 17 high)
Resistance 2: $ 1.3200 (Dec 21 high)
Resistance 1: $ 1.3150 (resistance line from Dec 14)
Current price: $1.3127
Support 1 : $1.3075 (Dec 21 low)
Support 2 : $1.2970 (low of December and November)
Support 3 : $1.2790 (61.8% FIBO $1,1870-$ 1,4285)

Comments: the pair bargains in former frameworks. The nearest resistance - $1,3150. Above growth is possible to $1,3200. The nearest support - $1,3075. Below decrease is possible to $1.2970.

Today is no data

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