Daily outlook - 21st May 2012 (00:30GMT)
The Euro (EUR) shrugged off incessant downward pressure in late trade on Friday as leaders of the G8 re-iterated their commitment to maintaining Greece’s membership in the Euro Bloc. “We re-affirm our interest in Greece remaining in the euro zone while respecting its commitments”. Pro-growth statements ensured the single currency managed to bounce off 5 month lows of 1.2642 seen in Asia to end the trading week near 1.2768
The Japanese Yen (JPY) rallied broadly in Asia, as heavy selling on Yen crosses, headlined by the AUDJPY and the NZDJPY. The AUDJPY cross bounced off Friday lows near 77.50 to trade back above 78 in Asia as sentiment may have been boosted in light of G8 comments. USDJPY traded in similar fashion, bouncing off levels near 79.00 on Friday, falling from 79.45 seen earlier.
The Sterling Pound (GBP) was indifferent in Friday trading, managing to rally against the USD in a late session sentiment shift, yet any further advance was limited as the EURGBP cross managed break to the upside, trading at 0.8060. The Cable (GBP/USD) managed to reverse off Asian session lows before closing near day highs above 1.5800
The Australian Dollar (AUD) was the markets whipping boy in Asian trade as heavy AUDJPY unwinding and a market spooked on Greek and Spanish woes, insured the commodity currency traded at its lowest level since Dec 2011. ANZ bank chief added fuel to the fire with his comments that offshore swap lines had frozen up for local (Australian) banks, sending the market into a Aussie selling frenzy, as flashbacks to 2008 pre-GFC were touted. The AUD traded at a low of 0.9794 before finding a boost on committed comments from the G8. Heading into the Asian session of trade Monday, data surrounding China imports of Coal had risen 69.9% for the year to date, managed to leg up the Aussie dollar, trading at a high of 0.9872.
Gold (XAU) was the biggest gainer, consolidating on its previous day 2.5% rally, posting another 1.1% ($17) gain. Flight to safety ensured XAU remained in demand, whilst a late Friday reversal in a weaker USD did little to contain the buoyancy in the precious metal, before fading near the psychological 1600 oz. mark to post a high of 1597.70