U.S. stock markets closed the trading session with a slight increase.
The reason for optimism was the statistics on new home sales in America. Thus, the figure rose to 468 thousand in January, which is the highest level since July 2008. Analysts had expected a decline in sales to 406 thousand Weak data in December was due to poor weather, which leads to the closure of construction sites and interferes buyers to look at new houses.
In connection with the forthcoming meeting of the ECB, on the market again have resumed speculations about possible reduction of deposit rates to negative figure. On this background, the euro fell against the dollar and fixed below the strong level 1.37. Today the course of trading can be influenced by data on the labor market in Germany (8:55 GMT) and the money supply in the Eurozone (09:00 GMT). In addition, in the United States will be published the statistics on the number of unemployment claims and the durable goods orders (13:30 GMT). Yesterday's fall showed that the bulls look quite weak. We forecast a decline of euro in the medium and long term.
Data on GDP growth in the UK fell short of forecasts of experts. So, for the 4th quarter GDP grew by 0.7%. We recall that in the third quarter, the economy grew by 0.8% and for the full year GDP growth was revised from 1.9% to 1.8%. Today macroeconomic data on the UK is not expected to be released , so the focus will be on the news from America. We keep medium and long term positive outlook for the pound, due to stable economic growth and improvement in the labor market of the country.
The price of USD/JPY continues to reduce the amplitude of oscillation. Due to a long-term consolidation and considering the publication of a large block of macrostatistics tonight (after 23:15 GMT), we expect a strong movement in one or another direction. We remind that will be published data on business activity in the manufacturing sector, household expenditures, the unemployment rate, the consumer price index and retail sales in Japan. In the long term, we maintain our positive outlook on USD/JPY due to loose monetary policy of the Bank of Japan.
The price of Australian dollar continued to decline against the U.S. dollar, because of publication of positive data on the U.S. housing market. During this week is not expected the release of macroeconomic data in Australia, so traders will pay attention to data from the U.S. Also on Saturday in China will be published a report on the index of business activity in the manufacturing sector of China, where goes the major part of country's exports.
The New Zealand dollar fell against the growth of the U.S. dollar, but the positive statistics on the trade balance surplus which fell to 306 million against the forecast 230 million has helped to restore some of the losses. Tomorrow will be released a report on the index business confidence in New Zealand. We keep medium and long term negative outlook for the New Zealand dollar.
The price of Light Sweet crude oil rose slightly on the background of data on oil and petroleum products inventories. Thus, oil inventories rose by 0.068 million barrels, against the forecast of growth by 1.1 million, gasoline inventories fell by 2.8 million barrels. The price of oil is supported by news regarding supply disruption from Libya and South Sudan. At the same record production volumes in the U.S. and a slowdown in China's economy time put pressure on oil prices. In addition, with improved weather conditions, U.S. oil consumption will decrease. We keep medium and long term negative outlook for oil.
Strengthening of the U.S. dollar has led to correction in gold prices. At the same time, we believe that the decline is situational and uncertainty about the future prospects of growth on the stock markets, as well as a slowdown in the Chinese economy will maintain the price of the metal. Further decline is possible in case of further strengthening of the U.S. dollar. Gold reserves in investment funds continue to grow gradually. We maintain our positive medium and long term outlook for gold.