Yen little moved as low inflation persists
US stocks gained yesterday as investors cheered impressive data from the US. In March, headline retail sales rose at an annualized rate of 1.6%. This was better than the expected 0.9%. The core retail sales rose by 1.2%, which topped analysts estimates of 0.7%. The initial jobless claims decreased by 192K while the continuing jobless claims decreased to 1,653K. Investors also acknowledged the IPO of Pinterest and Zoom, which gained by 25% and 80% in their first day of trading.
The Japanese yen was little moved against the USD after the country released inflation numbers. In March, consumer prices rose by 0.5%, which was in line with expectations. It was higher than the 0.2% released last month. On a MoM basis, the headline CPI was unchanged. The national core CPI increased by 0.8%, which was higher than the expected 0.7%. These numbers show that the country is still struggling with a prolonged period of low inflation. This means that the BOJ will likely continue holding rates at the current levels or raise them if the broad economy does well.
In the United States, the census bureau will release building permit data. The numbers are expected to show that in March, the building permits were 1.3 million, which was higher than the consensus estimate of 1.29 million. This will be a growth of 0.3%, which will be better than the previous month’s slump of 2%. The housing starts increased to 1.2 million from the previous 1.162 million. This will be a growth of 6.7%.
The USD/JPY was little moved after Japan released weak inflation numbers. The pair is trading at 111.91, which is slightly below this week’s high of 112.15. The price is along the middle line of the Bollinger Bands. It is also along the narrow channel shown below. The volumes have decreased while the accumulation/distribution has slumped. The pair is likely to remain along these levels today.
Yesterday, the EUR/USD pair declined sharply after the release of weak economic numbers from Europe. The pair declined from a high of 1.1325 to a low of 1.1225. The pair is now trading at the 1.1235 level, which is below the 23.6% Fibonacci Retracement level. On the four-hour chart, the price is below the 25-day and 50-day moving averages. The RSI is close to the oversold level of 30. The pair looks set to be little moved today.
The price of crude oil rose after Baker Hughes released the oil rigs numbers. Data showed that US rigs decreased from 833 to 825 in the past week. The XBR/USD pair rose to a high of 71.50, which was close to the YTD high of 71.77. This price is still within the narrow channel it has been for the past few days. The volumes have remained low. With most markets being closed, the pair will see less action today.