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Forex Weekly Outlook August 20 – 24

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British pound
  • Forex Weekly Outlook August 20 – 24

Global uncertainty and rising interest rates in developed economies are dictating the direction of the currency market. The slow down in China, rising risk in emerging economies, global trade tensions and weak wage growth are some of the key factors that will decide the foreign exchange rate of most nations going forward.

In the Uk, the pound has been falling since the Bank of England raised policy rate to 0.75 percent despite the projected increase in domestic demand, surged in consumer spending, 14-month record high expansion in the construction sector and moderate manufacturing growth. Indicating that growing uncertainty surrounding the Brexit negotiations is overshadowing the underlying fundamentals, therefore, hurting business sentiment and economic growth.

In Canada, surge in domestic inflation boosted the odds of the Bank of Canada raising interest rate as soon as September. The inflation rate rose to 3 percent year-on-year in July, up from 2.5 percent from the previous month and beats analysts’ projection of 2.5 percent. This was after the central bank raised interest rate for the fourth time within a year in July, validating the central bank’s assessment of the economy — “that the economy is operating close to capacity and further rate hikes will be needed”.

In Australia, the unemployment rate declined to 5.3 percent, while wage growth and inflation rate remained below expectation. This, the governor of the Reserve Bank of Australia said will hurt consumer spending in the near term, especially with the rising household debt. However, he expects wage growth to pick up gradually as the labour market gets tighter. The optimism he expressed during ‘Opening Statement to the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Economics’ bolstered Australian dollar outlook.

But growing uncertainty in emerging economies like Turkey, Venezuela (after the government devalued the currency by 95 percent) etc is disrupting the outlook of emerging currencies.

Therefore, because of the pound’s broad sell-off following the possible “no deal comments”. The focus will be on pound’s pairs this week.

GBPCAD

After the head and shoulders pattern, the GBPCAD dropped 663 pips to set a new record low at 1.6593 for the year. But with the renewed interest in the Canadian dollar due to the projected rise in interest rates in September and strong economic outlook, we might see a further surge in sellers’ interest on GBPCAD. Enough to push price towards 1.6339 support level in coming days. Therefore, as long as price remains below 1.7054 resistant level, I am bearish on this pair and will be looking to jump in below the 1.6661 support.

Forex Weekly Outlook August 20 - 24

GBPAUD

Similarly, the Australian dollar is a haven currency, therefore, enjoys rise in trade volume during a period of high uncertainty. Also, despite the weak consumer spending and sluggish wage growth, the surge in global commodity prices is supporting its economic growth. This week, I will be looking to sell the GBPAUD below the 1.7434 for 1.7274 support and expect a sustained break of that level to open up 1.7100 support level.

Forex Weekly Outlook August 20 - 24

EURCAD

While the Euro gained back part of its lost ground against the Canadian dollar on Monday, due to the drop in the value of commodity-dependent currencies following Venezuela devaluation, it is unclear if the new momentum can be sustained. This is because the currency crisis in Turkey and the uncertainty about the planned budget in Italy could weigh on the Euro, especially if the planned US-China trade talks scheduled for this week fails.

EURCADWeekly

Again, as long as price remains below the ascending channel as shown above, I will be looking to sell this pair for all the aforementioned reasons. The bearish trend started in March is likely to continue towards the 1.4799 support level now that the odds of the Bank of Canada raising rates in September is growing. However, I will be cautious because of the numerous events due this week.

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and Investing.com, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.

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Naira

Naira Gained 0.08 Percent to N414.73 Against the United States Dollar on Monday

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Naira - Investors King

The Nigerian Naira gained against the United States Dollar on Monday after falling to a record low of N422 per US dollar on Friday at the official forex window.

The local currency opened at N414.46 to a United States Dollar, a 0.15 percent improvement from Friday’s closing price.

Naira dropped as low as N425 to a United States Dollar at the spot forex market and to N429.50 at the forward forex market before closing at N414.73 to a United States Dollar at the spot forex market. Forex traders traded $172 million at the official forex window on Monday.

Forex scarcity across key foreign exchange segments and the decision of the central bank of Nigeria to halt the sale of forex to Bureau de Change operators continue to impede forex access in Africa’s largest economy.

Vice President Osinbajo had suggested that the apex bank should look to adopt a new forex policy to better close the gap between the black market and official rates. At the unregulated black market, traders are selling at N570 to US dollar.

This, the Vice President said was what was sustaining the black market.

For context, the Vice President’s point was that currently the Naira exchange rate benefits only those who are able to obtain the dollar at N410, some of who simply turn round and sell to the parallel market at N570. It is stopping this huge arbitrage of over N160 per dollar that the Vice President was talking about. Such a massive difference discourages doing proper business, when selling the dollar can bring in 40% profit!, stated Laolu Akande, Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media & Publicity, Office of the Vice President.

“This was why the Vice President called for measures that would increase the supply of foreign exchange in the market rather than simply managing demand, which opens up irresistible opportunities for arbitrage and corruption.”

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Naira

Naira Plunges to Record Low of N422/US$1 at Official Market

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Naira Dollar Exchange Rate - Investors King

The Nigerian Naira extended its decline to N422 to a United States Dollar at the official forex market, the investors and exporters forex window managed by the FMDQ Group.

Naira opened the day at N413.50 to a US Dollar before plunging to as low as N436 at the spot forex market and N446 at the forward market. The local currency eventually closed the day at N422.07 per US Dollar.

Investors at the window traded $141.94 million during the trading hours of Thursday.

The decline was after Vice President Osinbajo asked the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to rethink its current forex policy and allow the Naira to reflect market conditions. This, the Vice President said will help close the current gap that exists between the official rate and black market rate.

Media outlets had interpreted the Vice President position as a call for further devaluation of the Nigerian Naira. However, in a statement signed by Laolu Akande, Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media & Publicity, Office of the Vice President, Akande explained that Osinbajo is simply calling for a single forex rate to dislodge the activities of speculators and hoarders at the various unregulated black market.

He added that the 40 percent or N160 arbitrage difference between the official rate of N410 and N570 offered at the black market will continue to encourage corruption in the forex market.

“For context, the Vice President’s point was that currently the Naira exchange rate benefits only those who are able to obtain the dollar at N410, some of who simply turn round and sell to the parallel market at N570. It is stopping this huge arbitrage of over N160 per dollar that the Vice President was talking about. Such a massive difference discourages doing proper business, when selling the dollar can bring in 40% profit!

“This was why the Vice President called for measures that would increase the supply of foreign exchange in the market rather than simply managing demand, which opens up irresistible opportunities for arbitrage and corruption.”

At the black market, traders exchanged Naira at N565 to a United States Dollar on Thursday.

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Naira

Osinbajo Explains Why Forex Policy Should Discourage Arbitrage and Corruption

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Naira Exchange Rates - Investors King

Following Vice President Yemi Osinbajo suggestions that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) should rethink its present forex policy that encourages arbitrage and corruption and allow the Nigerian Naira to reflect market realities that were misconstrued as devaluation by the media, the Vice President has now come out to clear the air that he is not calling for a devaluation of the embattled Naira but to close the arbitrage gap of 40 percent gain that existed between CBN rate of N410/US$1 and the black market rate of N570.

In a statement released by Laolu Akande, Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media & Publicity, Office of the Vice President, the Vice President position was that the current Naira exchange rate benefits only those who are able to access the US Dollar at N410, “some of who simply turn round and sell to the parallel market at N570. It is stopping this huge arbitrage of over N160 per dollar that the Vice President was talking about. Such a massive difference discourages doing proper business, when selling the dollar can bring in 40% profit!,” the statement reads.

It continues “This was why the Vice President called for measures that would increase the supply of foreign exchange in the market rather than simply managing demand, which opens up irresistible opportunities for arbitrage and corruption.

“It is a well known fact that foreign investors and exporters have been complaining that they could not bring foreign exchange in at N410 and then have to purchase foreign exchange in the parallel market at N570 to meet their various needs on account of unavailability of foreign exchange. Only a more market reflective exchange rate would ameliorate this. With an increase in the supply of dollars the rates will drop and the value of the Naira will improve.

“The real issue confronting the economy on this matter is how to improve the supply of foreign exchange, but this will not happen if we do not allow mechanisms like the Importers and Exporters window to work. If we allow this market mechanism to work as intended, we will find that the Naira will appreciate against the dollar as we restore confidence in the system.”

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