UK RETAIL SALES, US HOUSING STARTS ON TAP FOR THURSDAY
A steady stream of economic data will make its way through the financial markets on Thursday, including the latest on UK retail sales and US housing activity. Currency traders will also be keeping tabs on the latest developments in Turkey following the historic route of the lira.
Action begins at 06:00 GMT with a report on German wholesale prices. Germany’s wholesale price index is forecast to grow 0.5% in July.
At 08:30 GMT, the UK’s Office for National Statistics will report on retail sales for the month of July. Receipts at retail stores are forecast to rise 0.2% compared with June and 3% annually. Excluding the volatile fuel component, receipts are projected to rise 0.1% month-on-month.
Later in the session, the European Commission’s statistical agency will release the latest Eurozone trade data. The euro area’s trade surplus is forecast to edge up slightly to €17 billion in June compared with €16.9 billion the month before.
Shifting gears to North America, the US Department of Commerce will release the monthly housing starts and building permits data series at 12:30 GMT. Building permits, which are a proxy for future construction plans, likely rose 1.4% to a seasonally adjusted 1.31 million units.
Separately, the US Department of Labor will release its weekly jobless claims report at 12:30 GMT. The number of Americans filing for first-time unemployment benefits likely rose to 215,000 in the week ended 7 August.
Also, at 12:30 GMT, the Philadelphia Fed will release the August edition of its manufacturing survey.
The AUD/USD exchange rate rose on Thursday, as traders shrugged off mixed Australian employment numbers. The economy shed nearly 4,000 jobs in July, as workforce participation fell. This, in turn, drove unemployment slightly lower to 5.3%. AUD/USD rose 0.3% to 0.7263, as the market continued to rebound from 18-month lows earlier in the week.
Europe’s common currency rebounded from 13-month lows on Thursday, though downside pressure continued to grip the market in the wake of the lira crash. The EUR/USD exchange rate is up 0.3% in Asia to trade at 1.1373. The long-term technical outlook remains overwhelmingly bearish as the US dollar continues to assert control over the currency market. With the latest breakdown, the EUR/USD could be targeting the upper 1.1100 range as the next major support.
Cable opened Thursday’s session modestly higher although the long-term picture remains firmly tilted to the downside. At press time, GBP/USD was trading at 1.2709, having gained 0.1% from the previous close. Cable faces immediate support at 1.2660, the recent one-year low.