Forex Weekly Outlook June 20 – 24
Global financial uncertainties continued this week, after data showed inspite of growing US economy the slowdown in job market weigh on growth. The British referendum is also in focus as the Britain go to the poll on Thursday 23 of June to decide their membership in the European Union.
Here is the highlight of last week.
US – The Federal Reserve held rates unchanged citing global growth concerns and UK’s EU referendum uncertainties, a move that drove the dollar lower against its counterparts. Even after predicting the economy will still grow 2 percent this year but 0.1 percent lower than previously forecast 2017 growth rate.
UK – The pound rose about 1 percent on Friday after campaign for the Brexit referendum was suspended on Thursday following the killing of Jo Cox, a Labour Party member and supporter of EU membership.
NZ – New Zealand economy rebounded once again with a better than expected GDP, amid escalating Auckland housing market. Although, economic growth was below 0.9 percent recorded previously, still better than 0.5 percent predicted by economists. The Kiwi climbed as high as 71.46 cents against the US dollar, its highest in over a year.
Japan – The Bank of Japan continues its struggle with the surging yen and has reiterated its readiness to intervene in what Japan Financial Minister Taro Aso described as one sided move that is hurting their economy. The yen gained against the US dollar reaching two year low on Friday.
Australia – Unemployment rate remains the same 5.7 percent in May and labour market added 17,900 part-time jobs, but the Aussie dollar failed to respond likewise after National Australia Bank (NAB) data showed business confidence dropped from 5 to 3 in May, suggesting businesses are worried about sustainability.
Canada – Canadian economy is still yet to find its rhythm after Alberta wildfire disrupted oil production, though the unemployment rate improved from 7.1 percent to 6.9 percent, the inflation rate plunged to 1.5 percent from 1.7 percent in May. The loonie lost 65 percent of its last week gain against the US dollar after peaking at 1.3084, below 1.3142 resistance level.
This week, German ZEW Economic Sentiment, Australia Monetary Policy Meeting Minutes, US Fed Chair Yellen Testifies, US Core Durable Goods Orders, German Ifo Business Climate and of course EU Membership Vote top the list. This week I will be looking at GBPCAD, EURGBP, and GBPCHF.
Once again referendum outcome will determine GBP price direction this week, but with current situation and emotional sentiment created by the murder of Jo Cox, I am leaning towards “stay” vote even more.
Last week, I said in a group “This week, I am bullish on Yen, Dollar and bearish on Aussie but wary of GBP even with Brexit leading, I am sure they are not going to leave the EU just yet and I expect GBP to hit some real high price level as it becomes obvious”. That was on 7th Monday before Thursday incident.
Prior to that, we’ve been selling GBPCAD since June 6, when the price was around 1.8745, but last week after failing to sustain a break of 1.8117 support level and forming a double bottom candlestick/bullish engulfing pattern that further validated 1.8117 as a solid support, and also confirm bullish run. This week as long as price remain above 1.8480 I am bullish on GBPCAD with 1.8745 as the first target. A vote in favour of Brexit will invalidate this view.
This pair has called a bottom at 1.3413 in April when it failed to sustain a breach of 1.3507 support level and eventually breaking the downward trend on the 19th of the same month before hitting a 9-week low (high-lows) on Thursday last week. This week I remain bullish on GBPCHF after breaking 1.3926 previous resistance level for similar reasons I stated above a close above 1.3926 should open up 1.4197.
Euro-area economy is still struggling, so is the UK but the single 19-nation currency has been more favoured with Brexit uncertainties when compared with the pound. The Euro-area economic data does not support the current bullish run of this pair and as always, a disparity in market price and economic data is alarming. This week as long as price remain below 0.7846 I am bearish on EURGBP, while targeting 0.7600. Please keep an eye on Brexit.
Naira Stabilizes at N415/$1 at Official Fx Window
The Nigerian currency has continued its trend of closing at N415 per dollar, after it settled to close at that price (which it has closed at consistently since Friday) on Tuesday. This is according to data gathered from the Investors and Exporters window where the Naira is traded officially.
It seems to appear that the Naira has found its resting place at this price, considering the number of days at which it has closed at that particular price. It is now left to see how this currency will trade closer to the festive period.
However, this ‘stability’ cannot be held as a permanent thing, because for this price to be the new normal, it may have to be maintained over a longer period of time. The Central Bank of Nigeria should be making moves to bring the value of the naira back up again, to make things better for Nigerians and Nigeria especially as we approach the Christmas period.
The FMDQ group’s updates of the Spot and Forward exchange rates showed slight changes here and there, with nothing too heavy. The Spot rate did not see any changes from Monday, as it maintained the high of N405 per dollar and a low of N465.97 per dollar.
The Forward rate however witnessed a jump, with Tuesday’s high jumping back to N411 per dollar from N452 per dollar where it sat on Monday. The lowest of the Forward rate further fell to N457 per dollar from the N453 per dollar where it was on Monday.
Those who would benefit the most from Tuesday’s trading round are those who agreed on future deals at prices between N411 and N415 per dollar.
The daily turnover recorded by the FMDQ group on Tuesday sat at $152.98 million, more than $100 million less than the $256 million which Monday recorded.
On Tuesday, the parallel market saw the Naira trade at N565 per dollar. The Central Bank has however stated that it does not reckon with the parallel market.
CBN Decentralises Form A, Introduces e-Form A to Improve Invincible Transactions
In an effort to improve access to foreign exchange and facilitate invincible forex transactions, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has decentralised access to Form A by introducing an electronic version, e-Form A, for all.
The CBN disclosed this in a circular titled ‘Automation of Form ‘A’ on the Trade Monitoring System’.
The e-Form A will now replace the hard copy for all invincible transactions, PTA/BTA, medicals, education, other remittances, with effect from Tuesday, 30 November 2021.
Understanding Form A
Form A allows forex customers under the invincible category to purchase/access forex at the CBN or interbank rate to make payments for eligible services as predetermined by the Foreign exchange manual.
Therefore, Form A is a form made available by the Central Bank of Nigeria to pay for foreign exchange transactions and other remittances as stated above.
CBN has now decentralised form A to allow more people to access forex at the apex bank predetermined rate and also for proper monitoring of forex transactions, this will allow CBN better curb forex diversion to ineligible items or restricted items.
Customers are required to have a valid Bank Verification Number (BVN) and pay N5,000 as fee for e-Form A application.
Read the CBN circular “This is to inform all authorized dealers and the general public of the deployment of e-Form ‘A’.
“Accordingly, the e-Form ‘A’ shall replace the hard copy of Form ‘A’ for invincible transactions [PTA/BTA, medicals, education, other remittances etc.]with effect from November 30, 2021.
“Consequently, all authorized dealers are required to ensure that the processing of Form ’A’ shall only be done electronically on the Trade Monitoring System accessible at www.tradesystem.gov.ng.
“The general public is required to obtain a valid Bank Verification Number (BVN) from their authorized dealer Banks. The BVN is a prerequisite for customers to access the Trade System for e-Form ‘A’ application.
“The e-Form ‘A’ is web-based and allows the general public to initiate the Form from their offices/homes and submit same to the authorized dealer bank.
“A charge of N5,000 (Five Thousand Naira) as fee per declaration of e-Form ‘A’ is applicable with effect from November 30, 2021, and henceforth. There will be a direct debit from the processing bank’s current account for each declaration which should be recovered the charge on the customer by the bank. However, customers for the e-Form ‘A’ should be separated from other bank charges.”
“All hard copies of Forms ‘A’ established on or before November 2 2021 (prior to the commencement of the e-Form ‘A’) shall be utilized within 15 working days of the establishment of the Form.
“For the avoidance of doubt, all established hard copies of Forms ‘A’ for which disbursement had not been made within the transition period of 15 working days shall be deemed cancelled.
“All authority dealer banks are enjoined to inform their customers of the development for compliance.”
Naira Maintains Stability at Official Fx Window
The Naira maintained its streak on Monday, settling to close at N415.07 per dollar. This is the same price at which the Nigerian currency has closed for the last few days, according to the Investors and Exporters window where the Naira is traded officially.
While there have been very marginal differences in the opening prices over the last days, in the end the currency has come around to settle down at the same price (N415.07 per dollar) at the close of each day.
On Friday, the Naira opened at N413.71 per dollar which represented a 0.03% change from the previous day, according to the Investors and Exporters window. On Monday, the currency opened at a similar price, starting the day off at N413.75 per dollar.
Although there have been minimal changes in the opening prices, generally the currency opens at similar prices, with backgrounds of N413 per dollar and changes of only a few kobo.
While the general opening and closing prices didn’t witness much change, the same cannot be said for the Spot and Forward rates. On Friday, the Spot rate was between N404 per dollar and N444 per dollar. However, Monday saw a significant change in the Spot rate. Across all transactions that occurred on Monday, the naira reached a high of only N405 per dollar (N1 lower than Friday’s high), and went on to reach a low of N456.97 per dollar (N12 lower than the previous day).
The Forward rate – for future transactions that were agreed upon on Monday – saw a more significant change. Friday’s Forward rate high was recorded at N411 per dollar, but on Monday that fell greatly to N452 per dollar. However, Monday’s Forward rate lowest was N453 per dollar, about N2 better than the N455 per dollar at which it traded on Friday.
The total turnover of the dollar recorded on Monday sat at $256.69 million. This was considerably higher than the turnover of $215 million that was recorded on Friday.
At the parallel market on Monday, the Naira fell to close at N569 per dollar from the N560 per dollar at which it traded the previous day. After that exponential rise to about N535 per dollar, the parallel market is seeing the Naira return even closer to the N575 per dollar price at which it had sat for a while.
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