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04.03.2014 06:21

Asian session: The yen weakened

00:30 Australia Building Permits, m/m January -1.3% Revised From -2.9% +0.7% +6.8%

00:30 Australia Building Permits, y/y January +21.8% +34.6%

00:30 Australia Current Account, bln Quarter IV -12.5 Revised From -12.7 -10.1 -10.1

01:30 Japan Labor Cash Earnings, YoY January +0.5% Revised From +0.8% +0.3% -0.2%

03:30 Australia Announcement of the RBA decision on the discount rate 2.50% 2.50% 2.50%

03:30 Australia RBA Rate Statement

The yen weakened against most of its 16 major peers after Bank of Japan Governor Haruhiko Kuroda said there’s momentum for carry trade. There is momentum spurring the yen carry trade, Kuroda said in parliament today, referring to a strategy of borrowing in a low-rate market to fund purchases of higher-yielding assets. The BOJ currently buys about 7 trillion yen ($69 billion) of Japan’s government bonds every month to boost inflation to its 2 percent target through lower borrowing costs.

The yen reached a one-month high yesterday as Russia took control of Ukraine’s Crimea region, spurring demand for safer assets.

Australia’s dollar weakened today after the Reserve Bank left its benchmark interest rate unchanged at a record low to spur domestic industries and offset a slump in mining investment. “The decline in the exchange rate seen to date will assist in achieving balanced growth in the economy, though the exchange rate remains high by historical standards,” RBA Governor Glenn Stevens said in a statement accompanying the decision. He last month refrained from language pointing to the currency trading at a high level.

EUR / USD: during the Asian session, the pair traded in the range of $ 1.3720-40

GBP / USD: during the Asian session the pair fell to $ 1.6640

USD / JPY: during the Asian session, the pair rose to Y101.75

The Ukrainian crisis will continue to dominate headlines on Tuesday, although markets will have a full data calendar to concentrate on, albeit mainly second tier releases. The European calendar gets underway at 0700GMT, with the release of the German fourth quarter wholesale sales data. There is a flurry of monthly car sales data expected throughout the day. At 0800GMT, French February car sales data will be released. German car registration data is also due at some point in the morning session. At 0900GMT, Spanish February net unemployment data will be released, with analysts looking for an increase of 22,000. The German January VDMA machine orders data will be published at the same time. At 1000GMT, EMU January PPI data will be published, seen down 0.1% on month, down 1.3% on year. There is only limited UK data expected, with the February CIPS/Markit Construction PMI data set to cross the wires. Across the Atlantic, the US calendar will kick off with the release of the February Domestic Vehicle Sales. The ICSC-Goldman Store Sales data for the Mar 1 week will be released at 1245GMT, with the Redbook Average for the same period due at 1355GMT. At 1445GMT, the February ISM-NY Business Index will be published, followed at 1500GMT by the release of the March IBD/TIPP Optimism Index. Also at 1500GMT, the Senate Banking Committee had planned to hold confirmation hearings for the Obama Administration's latest Fed appointments, but these have been postponed due to the weather. There is no reserve date yet in place. The White House will release the fiscal year 2014 budget at 1745GMT. There is little in the way of scheduled central bank speak, although Richmond Federal Reserve Bank President Jeffrey Lacker will deliver a speech in New York at 2115GMT.

Market Focus

  • The Bank of Japan decided by a 7-2 majority vote to hold the interest rate at -0.10%
  • Earnings Season in U.S.: Major Reports of the Week
  • U.S. commercial crude oil inventories decreased by 4.7 million barrels from the previous week
  • Australian unemployment rate stable at 5.6% in June
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