As expected, the FOMC minutes failed to trigger any major market movements and both currency pairs traded boringly within tight trading ranges. Consequently, there was nothing to be gained for traders.
Many Federal Reserve officials saw increased downside risks to the outlook for the U.S. economy if the recent global market turmoil, including the slowdown in China was sustained, the minutes showed. While rate hike expectations for 2016 have been gradually priced out, there is still a small chance for the Fed to raise interest rates in the middle of the year. Policy makers emphasized that the timing and pace of adjustments will depend on future economic and financial developments and so, if the U.S. economy continues to improve the Fed could follow its path of further tightening.
We will wait and see and focus on technical conditions. The EUR/USD formatted a current trading range between 1.12 and 1.11 and traders should rather wait for any sustained breakout above or below that range. If the euro breaks above 1.1215, there is a next hurdle at 1.1240/50, which needs to be broken before we can shift our focus to 1.13 again. On the downside, we expect the 1.1085-70 area to be crucial for further bearish momentum. With a break of 1.1070, we could see the euro falling towards 1.1050 and 1.0990.
The GBP/USD remained well above 1.4240 but was not able to exceed the 1.4340-level. Once the 1.4340-level will be breached to the upside, sterling could rally towards 1.4380 and 1.44. Above 1.4410 the next crucial level could be at 1.4450. However, below 1.4270 we will turn our focus towards the 1.42-mark.
Today we will keep an eye on the following important economic reports which may have an impact on the currencies:
12:30 EUR ECB Meeting Minutes
13:30 USA Philly Fed Index
16:00 USA Crude Oil Inventories
(Time zone GMT)
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