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00:00 Australia Consumer Inflation Expectation December +2.2% +1.8%
00:30 Australia New Motor Vehicle Sales (MoM) November -2.8% 0.0%
00:30 Australia New Motor Vehicle Sales (YoY) November +8.6% +9.7%
The yen fell to the weakest level in almost nine months against the dollar before the Bank of Japan’s Tankan survey tomorrow, which economists say will show big manufacturers in the nation grew more pessimistic. The BOJ’s quarterly Tankan survey tomorrow will probably show that sentiment among large manufacturers slid to minus 10 from minus 3 in the third quarter, according to the median estimate of economists in a Bloomberg News survey. That would be the lowest since the first quarter of 2010.
The Japanese currency touched an eight-month low versus the euro as polls suggest Shinzo Abe’s opposition party will win power in Japan’s Dec. 16 elections, adding to pressure on the central bank to take more easing steps as early as next week. Abe, whose Liberal Democratic Party leads in opinion polls before the general election this weekend, has called for a doubling of the central bank’s inflation goal to 2 percent and unlimited easing to revive growth. The BOJ is due to a hold a monetary policy meeting on Dec. 19-20.
The euro maintained three days of gains after the Federal Reserve said it will expand its asset purchases, and before European Union leaders begin a two-day summit today. The Fed said it will buy $45 billion a month of Treasury securities starting in January to spur the economy. The U.S. central bank plans to “maintain accommodation as long as needed to promote a stronger economic recovery in the context of price stability,” Chairman Ben S. Bernanke said yesterday at a press conference after a meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee. Rates will stay low “at least as long” as unemployment remains above 6.5 percent and if inflation is projected to be no more than 2.5 percent, the FOMC said in a statement. The thresholds replace the Fed’s earlier view that rates would stay near zero at least through the middle of 2015.
EUR / USD: during the Asian session, the pair traded in the range of $ 1.3055-90.
GBP / USD: during the Asian session, the pair traded in the range of $ 1.6125-45.
USD / JPY: during the Asian session, the pair rose to Y83.65.
The UK calendar starts at 0930GMT, with the release of the SMMT car production figures for November. At 1000GMT, UK Treasury Officials are scheduled to appear before the Treasury Select Committee to discuss the Autumn Statement. At 1100GMT, the UK CBI Industrial trends survey for December will cross the wires.
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