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00:30 Australia Building Permits, m/m November -1.8% -0.9% -1.5%
00:30 Australia Building Permits, y/y November +23.1% +20.1% +22.2%
00:30 Australia Retail sales (MoM) November +0.5% +0.5% +0.7%
00:30 Australia Retail Sales Y/Y November +3.6%
01:30 China PPI y/y December -1.4% -1.2% -1.4%
01:30 China CPI y/y December +3.0% +2.7% +2.5%
The dollar remained higher versus most major peers before government data today forecast show initial claims for unemployment benefits fell. Initial jobless claims in the U.S. probably fell to 335,000 in the week through Jan. 4 from 339,000 in the previous period, according to the median estimate of economists surveyed by Bloomberg News before today’s Labor Department report. A report tomorrow may say U.S. employers continued to add positions and the jobless rate remained at a five-year low. Data tomorrow may show employers in the world’s biggest economy added 195,000 jobs last month after boosting positions by 203,000 in November, according to a separate poll. The unemployment rate probably held at 7 percent, the least since November 2008.
The pound traded near its strongest in a year against the euro before policy decisions by the European Central Bank and the Bank of England today. ECB officials meeting today will probably keep the benchmark at a record-low 0.25 percent, according to all 51 economists and analysts surveyed by Bloomberg. Policy makers at the BOE are likely to refrain from changing its 0.5 percent key rate, a separate poll showed.
Australia’s currency weakened along with Asian stocks. Government reports showed retail sales in the nation rose in November by more than economists predicted, while building approvals declined.
EUR / USD: during the Asian session, the pair traded in the range of $ 1.3565-85
GBP / USD: during the Asian session, the pair traded in the range of $ 1.6440-60
USD / JPY: on Asian session the pair traded in the range of Y104.75-00
UK trade data will be released at 0930GMT. Business surveys have suggested UK export growth should accelerate, but the official data have painted a picture of exporters struggling in the face of weak Eurozone demand. In October goods exports to EU countries fell by stg0.5 billion on the month to stg12.1 billion and the EU goods trade balance widened to a record stg6.5 billion. The UK's total trade gap is expected to remain unchanged at stg2.6 billion in November, with a slight improvement in the goods trade gap. The January BOE Monetary Policy Decision will be released at 1200GMT and will likely see the MPC treading water. All the external debate is about what the MPC will do as the jobless rate, currently at 7.4%, nears the 7.0% policy threshold. Even if this were to happen as early as the end of Q1, the March jobless rate data will not be published until May, so the MPC does have a little time on its hand to debate its next step.
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