Summary: The Canadian and Australian dollars went their separate ways today, each because of news on the inflation front. Meanwhile, equities shed their initial China-inspired gains when disappointment over Netflix filtered through.
The loonie and kiwi are a couple of birds with a glaring difference - the loon can fly and the kiwi cannot. That difference was on full display today. Kiwi face-planted after weaker than expected New Zealand inflation data while the loon soared when Canadian inflation beat expectations.
Statistics Canada reported that CPI rose 1.9% in March, year over year, well above the 1.5% level recorded in February. However, CPI excluding energy rose 2.2%. At the same time, Canada’s trade deficit narrowed in February and the January deficit was revised down as well. The news knocked USDCAD from 1.3338 to 1.3270. Prices bounced to 1.3338 as of 1410 GMT, due to a drop in WTI oil prices and the better than expected US trade data, which underpinned the greenback.
USDCAD is underpinned bullish technicals and a dovish Bank of Canada monetary policy outlook. Fibonacci support is at 1.3270 which represents the 50% retracement level of the February/March range. Prices continue to gravitate around the 100-day moving average at 1.3333. However, expectations for a Canadian growth rebound in Q2 and steady to high oil prices are capping topside moves.
The US goods and services deficit narrowed 3.46% to $49.4 billion in February which is an eight-month low. Some economists expect today’s data to contribute to a 1% jump in Q1 GDP which gave a bid to the US dollar.
The greenback is trading close to unchanged since New York opened against most of the major G10 currencies with AUDUSD and NZDUSD losing ground.
Wall Street opened with a bit of a pop, thanks to the earlier China data, but prices quickly deflated in early trading. Traders were not overly thrilled by quarterly reports from Netflix, (NFLX) which is down 1.34% or IBM which sank 5.22% in early trading. It wasn’t all bad news. Morgan Stanley (MS: NYSE) beat profit and revenue estimates and its shares are up 1.0%.