Dollar Down to Weakest Level of 2009

The U.S. Dollar fell versus the EUR but clung to small gains against other major rivals on Monday. This came as traders turned their focus to data coming this week and as the EUR and Yen hit technical levels that triggered some buying. The market focus now shifts to a slew of U.S. indicators to be released between Tuesday and Thursday that could determine whether the Dollar will continue to trade lower, or experience a pause.

USD - Dollar Tumbles to 1-Year Low vs. EUR

The Dollar tumbled to a 1-year low vs. the EUR in Monday's trading. However, the USD did make some gains against other currencies, despite the USD falling in early trading, as Monday was a very volatile trading day. The main factor that pushed the U.S. lower against the EUR yesterday was that U.S. stocks made significant gains, led by industrial and financial shares that helped the market prevail over an earlier slump. This led investors to drop the USD in some cases for higher yielding currencies and equities.

The EUR/USD pair closed higher by 70 pips at the 1.4614 level, which was slightly lower than the high reached yesterday of 1.4652. Obama's speech about the U.S. financial rules overhaul on Monday helped the USD strengthen against several major currencies. The USD/JPY cross finished trading at 91.10, the first daily rise in a week-and-half. This all shows that the USD was unable to gain considerable strength yesterday, as no economic data was released from the U.S., which put the greenback on the backburner.

Looking ahead to today, there is expected to be much economic data released from the U.S. economy. Core Retail Sales, PPI and Retail Sales figures will be released simultaneously at 12:30 GMT. If the figures are better than expected, then this may lend a lot of support to the greenback. However, worse figures could send the USD lower again the EUR for a second day in a row. Later on, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner is expected to speak about the U.S. economy at 14:00 GMT. Any clues about future U.S. Interest Rates are likely to create to great volatility in the U.S. Dollar going into mid-week trading.

EUR - EUR Soars despite Poor Fundamentals

The Euro-Zone Industrial Production fell for a 2nd straight month in July, stressing the frailty of the Euro-Zone economic recovery. The data was -0.3% lower from the previous reading, sparking possible fears that European Central Bank (ECB) President Jean-Claude Trichet will raise Euro-Zone interest rates later than originally forecast. Yesterday, all of this actually led to a buy-up of the EUR, as the European currency's safe-haven status returned to the forefront.

The EUR made significant inroads into the U.S. Dollar, as the pair rose to 1.4614 level, it's highest in nearly a year. The EUR also gained against the GBP by nearly 50 pips, as investors favored the EUR over the British currency in yesterday's trading. It seems that despite yesterday's lack of confidence in Europe, the European currency seemed to act the opposite way to the equity market. The EUR marked its first bullish trading day vs. the JPY since Wednesday, as the cross closed significantly higher at the 133.20 level.

Today, the most significant release from the Euro-Zone will be the German ZEW Economic Statement at 9:00 GMT. This is expected to be the main source of volatility for the EUR in early trading, as it is a leading measure of economic health for both the German and Euro-Zone economies. From Britain, the main releases today are the CPI figures at 8:30 GMT and the Inflation Report Hearings at 8:45 GMT. Optimistic results may push the GBP significantly higher today. This would be a much needed boost for the Pound, as it seeks to reverse yesterday's losses against its major currency crosses.

JPY - Yen Slips against the Majors

The Yen slipped against the majors on Monday, as Japan's currency failed to extend its recent gains. It is important to note that the Yen has gone very bullish against its major currency pairs in recent days. Therefore, yesterday's behavior may be a correction due to the JPY being overvalued lately. Also, investors dropped the JPY on Monday, as they seeked to make profits in higher yielding currencies and commodities such as Crude Oil.

In yesterday's trading, the Yen fell by 70 pips against the USD to the 91.10 level. The Yen closed 110 pips lower against the GBP at the 151.33 level, Also, the EUR/JPY cross finished trading 175 pips higher at 133.20. Today, the JPY is set to move on news coming out of the major economies. If there are good figures from these countries, the Yen's downward correction may continue.

OIL - Crude Oil Steady Bellow $69 a Barrel

Crude Oil closed higher by 55 cents, or nearly 1%, to make a mini comeback by closing at $69.05. This was despite being down for much of yesterday's trading session. Crude was helped by the USD's weakness on Monday, as investor's seeked an alternative investment for higher returns. The black gold also gained due to higher confidence owed to President Obama's speech on Monday over financial regulation.

Crude is set for another mouthwatering and volatile day of trading today. If the USD continues to collapse today, Crude may go higher. Also, Oil may also continue rising if there is an equity market rally led by the U.S. Oil seems undervalued lately, so you traders are advised to buy into this popular commodity now as today's trading gets under way.

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Euro, British Pound May Decline Against US Dollar as Equity Futures Point Lower (Euro Open)

The Euro and the British Pound may see selling pressure with US stock index futures are trading down nearly 1% ahead of the opening bell in Europe, pointing to sagging risk appetite that stands to boost the safety-linked US Dollar. Germany’s ZEW survey of investor confidence, Swiss Industrial Production, and UK CPI highlight the economic calendar.

Key Overnight Developments

• New Zealand Manufacturing Falls Most on Record in Second Quarter
• UK House Prices See First Gains in Two Years on Low Supply, Says RICS
• Australian Dollar Falls as RBA Minutes Weigh on Rate Hike Expectations

Critical Levels

The Euro traded lower in Asian trading, slipping as much as -0.3% against the US Dollar. Meanwhile, the British Pound advanced, adding 0.4% to test as high as 1.6629 against the greenback.

Asia Session Highlights

New Zealand’s second quarter Manufacturing Activity report showed that sales fell -4.8%, the most on record, while the outcome for the first three months of the year was revised down to reflect a -1.3% drop from the -0.9% result that was originally reported. The reading reinforces last week’s comments from Reserve Bank of New Zealand Governor Alan Bollard, who said the stronger currency puts business profits “under pressure” and warned that “If the exchange rate were to continue its recent appreciation…the sustainability of the present recovery will be brought into question.” The New Zealand Dollar has appreciated 27.3% in trade-weighted terms to date since hitting a record low in January as a broad rebound in risk appetite drove demand for the high-yield currency.

UK House Prices grew for the first time in over two years, adding 10.7% in August according to a survey from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), an industry association for real estate agents. Economists were forecasting a flat result ahead of the release. The rebound may not reflect a rebound in demand however: RICS chief economist Simon Robinsohn said “Its fair to say that a lack of supply is driving the rise in house prices,” adding that it would be “foolish to believe prices are going to go up in a straight line” from here and predicting that “2010 will be a more difficult year.” Indeed, the number of for-sale properties per real estate agent fell by about 23% from a year earlier. Rising unemployment looks to be the central challenge to a sustainable recovery in housing, trimming incomes and weighing on purchasing power. The jobless printed at 4.9% in July, the highest in nearly 12 years, and is expected to top 9% next year.

Minutes from the September policy meeting of the Reserve Bank of Australia weighed on the Aussie dollar as Glenn Stevens and company said they were seeking to avoid “premature tightening”, upsetting expectations that the central bank was ready to hike interest rates in the near future. An index measuring traders’ priced-in expectations of RBA rate hikes over the next 12 months dropped by a hefty 8% (13 basis points) after the announcement.

Euro Session: What to Expect

Switzerland’s Industrial Production is set to shrink at an annual pace of -11.1% in the second quarter, the most in at least 18 years. This is quite telling: manufactured goods top the list of Swiss export commodities, so the drop in industrial output is indicative not only of a sagging domestic economy but of lackluster demand in key overseas markets. The top three Euro Zone economies alone account for close to 50% of Swiss export demand; considering EURCHF has been trading sideways in a fairly narrow range since the SNB took hold of the exchange rate in mid-March and therefore is unlikely to have significantly impacted European preferences for Swiss-made products, it would seem that the forthcoming Industrial Production figures stand in contrast of the surface-level improvements in second-quarter GDP readings out of the Euro area.

In the UK, the Consumer Price Index is expected to show the annual pace of inflation slowed to 1.4% in the year to August, the lowest in five years. The Bank of England has said that CPI will fall below 1% at some point in the third quarter in its latest quarterly inflation report. From there, Mervyn King and company expect inflation to be “unusually volatile”: upward pressure is seen as past changes in energy prices drop out of year-on-year comparisons and from firms’ continued adjustments to a weaker British Pound (as compared to the peak in late 2007); meanwhile, downward pressure is seen as rising unemployment depresses wages. The central bank concluded that “inflation is more likely to be below [the 2% target level] in the medium term [than above it]”. On balance, such open-ended accounting of what to expect in the coming months suggests that, barring a wild deviation from the forecast, the CPI result is unlikely to prove considerably market-moving having probably been priced into the exchange rate at this point. Indeed, with interest rates already at 0.5% and a 175 billion pound asset-buying scheme firmly in place, lending growth figures (showing the degree to which aggressive easing is filtering into the broad economy) are far more important to gauge future monetary policy than inflation data.

The forward-looking Expectations component of Germany’s ZEW Survey of investor sentiment is forecast to rise to 60.0 in September, the highest in over three years. The broader Euro Zone equivalent is set to follow suit. Still, a survey of economists polled by Bloomberg reveals that most market-watchers expect the Euro Zone to underperform the spectrum of industrial economies next year, so any optimism born of growing confidence that an “Armageddon scenario” has likely been averted seems temporary at best, with European sentiment figures likely to head lower as analysts focus on questions of who will recover first.

On balance, risk sentiment may prove to be the key driver for currency markets in the coming session: US stock index futures are trading down nearly 1% ahead of the opening bell in Europe, pointing to sagging risk appetite that stands to boost the safety-linked US Dollar against the likes of the Euro and the British Pound.

Written by Ilya Spivak, Currency Analyst
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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!