US Dollar Advances Against Euro, British Pound as Stocks Meet Resistance (Euro Open)

The US Dollar extended gains against the Euro and the British Pound in overnight trading as an index of global stock performance tested key resistance, fueling demand for safe-haven assets. With no data on the economic calendar, risk trends are likely to dominate price action in European trading hours.

Key Overnight Developments

• Australian Producer Prices Unexpectedly Fell in the First Quarter
• UK House Prices Rose for Third Straight Month in April, Says Rightmove
• ECB’s Bini Smaghi Says 1% Is a “Credible” Floor for Interest Rates

Critical Levels

The Euro extended losses in overnight trading, testing as low as 1.2967 to the US Dollar. The British Pound followed suit, slipping as much as -0.7% against the greenback.

Asia Session Highlights

UK House Prices rose for the third consecutive month in April according to Rightmove, an online listing of for-sale properties. Still, it seems premature to conclude that the data is indicative of a robust, sustainable rebound in demand for big-ticket purchases, a development that would be reflective of buyers’ expectations that the economy will improve in the near future. Indeed, the latest data has seen consumer confidence return to record lows while NIESR, a think tank, said the economy shrank 1.5% in the first quarter and could “continue to decline for up to another year.” Prices declined -7.3% from a year ago, a smaller decline than last month’s -9.0% but a significant one nonetheless.

Australia’s Producer Price Index unexpectedly fell in the first quarter, bringing the annual pace of wholesale inflation to 15-month low at 4.0%. The reading points to downward pressure on consumer prices (the headline inflation gauge) as companies pass on lower production costs via cheaper finished goods, giving the Reserve Bank of Australia scope for to cut interest rates again as the economic downturn deepens. Although the central bank has signaled the easing cycle is over, Westpac Banking Corp’s chief economist Bill Evans said last week the decision to hold off lowering rates now is likely a tactical one given the confidence boost typically seen after such actions: “We expect the bank will see the need to have ample capacity to be cutting rates through the second half of 2009…The economic case for cutting rates is undeniable.” The Westpac Leading Index fell -5.1% in the year to February, the worst since 1982, convincing Evans that “the Australian economy will enter a recession.”

The ECB’s Bini Smaghi sounded notably hawkish in a speech today, warning against loosening monetary policy “too much” and saying that 1% floor for benchmark interest rates is “credible”. Smaghi added that he sees no risk of deflation – rather, he sees inflation expectations rising, not falling. The ECB member’s comments ought to be taken with a grain of salt, however, as he himself has noted as recently as this month that “[forex] markets are prone to episodes of overshooting and undershooting…public intervention in the form of public statements…may thus be warranted.” Last week, ECB President Jean-Claude Trichet also defended the a “measured approach”, saying this was key to restoring market confidence.

Euro Session: What to Expect

With no data on the economic calendar, risk trends are likely to dominate price action in European trading hours. The global equities rally that began on March 10th has taken the MSCI World Stock Index to resistance at the top of a falling channel that has contained prices since mid-October of last year. That metric is now -90.4% inversely correlated with the US Dollar Index, an average value of USD against six top currencies, suggesting that any reversal in risk appetite across global stock exchanges will boost the greenback further.

Written by Ilya Spivak, Currency Analyst
Article Source - US Dollar Advances Against Euro, British Pound as Stocks Meet Resistance (Euro Open)
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What is Forex?

If you would go out on a dinner with your friends or family and you mentioned that you were trading on the Forex market most of them wouldn’t know what you were talking about. The worst thing is that most of the Forex traders that join the Forex market don’t know what they are doing. Understanding what Forex is, is the first good step to your success at Forex trading.

The foreign exchange market (Currency, Forex, or FX) is where currency trading takes place. It is where banks and other official institutions facilitate the buying and selling of foreign currencies. Forex transactions typically involve one party purchasing a quantity of one currency in exchange for paying a quantity of another. The foreign exchange market that we see today started evolving during the 1970s when world over countries gradually switched to floating exchange rate from their erstwhile exchange rate regime, which remained fixed as per the Bretton Woods system till 1971.

Today, the Forex market is one of the largest and most liquid financial markets in the world, and includes trading between large banks, central banks, currency speculators, corporations, governments, and other institutions. The average daily volume in the global foreign exchange and related markets is continuously growing. Traditional daily turnover was reported to be over US$3.2 trillion in April 2007 by the Bank for International Settlements. Since then, the market has continued to grow. According to Euromoney's annual Forex Poll, volumes grew a further 41% between 2007 and 2008.

Forex Turnover

Forex Turnover
Main foreign exchange market turnover, 1988 - 2007, measured in billions of USD.
The purpose of Forex market is to facilitate trade and investment. The need for a foreign exchange market arises because of the presence of multifarious international currencies such as US Dollar, Pound Sterling, Yen, etc., and the need for trading in such currencies. Since you aren’t buying anything physical this kind of trading can be confusing. When buying a currency think of it as buying a part in that particular country’s economy because the currency rate reflects the economical situation of the country when compared to others.


List of most popular currencies on the Forex market

Forex used to be a closed market because only the “big boys” because you needed between 10 and 50 million $ to open an account. But today, with the development of internet, online Forex brokers have the possibility to offer their services to “little” traders. All you need to start is a computer, fast internet connection and information which you can find on this page also.

This enormous market is like the dangerous sea where you can meet lots of sharks and dangerous waters but at the same time it is the only one where two weeks of trading can hypothetically bring you $1,000,000 out of $1,000 of initial investment.

This is certainly hypothetically because a lot of newbie traders deal with their trades as gambling, that surely bring them to having nothing in the end. You should always keep the phrase "be careful!" in your mind. This market would give you its profit possibilities only if you learn the basic things hard and make lots of demo trading.

The statistics is that as much as 95% of traders come to losing their money at Forex, 5% have profit and less than 1% of traders make large fortune at Forex. You shouldn't produce, sell or advertise anything trading at Forex. Your assets are your knowledge, experience and a small amount of cash.

This market is a platform for banks, transnational corporations and individual traders to change the currencies they possess into other ones. This is the spot Forex market. At this market you can trade with up to 1:400 leverage which means that you'll get $400 on your account for each dollar invested. So, you can trade with the $400,000 sum having invested $1,000 onto your account.

Forex is unique among other world markets because in any time of day and night, somewhere in the world, a financial centre is open for business, banks and corporations exchange currency all the time, with a little lower frequency during the weekend.

Why to trade on Forex?

1. There is no commission fee for trading at Forex.
2. There is no intermediary, you can trade directly at Forex.
3. Forex is open 24-hours a day.
4. Nobody can influence the market for a longer period.
5. High liquidity.
6. Free demo accounts, analysis and charts.
7. Small accounts that allow everyone to try out his luck.

Hope this has answered a lot of questions you were asking yourself about Forex and that you can now start trading. Also make sure that you check out other articles on this blog which can help you earn your fortune.

Good luck to everyone!