Dollar trades mildly higher today as risk markets are back on the defensive side. Yen is trading as the weakest one so far even though Nikkei is down -0.9% at the time of writing. Swiss Franc and Kiwi follows closely. Notable strength is seen in Aussie after RBA minutes showed neutral stance. Major forex pairs are crosses are generally stuck in range. Nonetheless, the dip in EUR/AUD is seen as a early sign of near term reversal and will be closely watched.

RBA cautiously neutral

RBA minutes showed that policymakers are maintaining the cautiously neutral stance. The low interest rate is helping to bring down unemployment rate and keep inflation inside target band. But it echoed recent comments from officials that "further progress on these goals was expected over the period ahead but the increase in inflation was likely to occur only gradually as the economy strengthened." The minutes also warned that "there was still a risk that growth in consumption might turn out to be weaker than forecast if household income growth were to increase by less than expected." It’s generally expected that RBA will be on hold throughout 2018. But views on whether it will hike in early 2019 are divided.

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BoJ to continue virtual normalization

Former BoJ board member Takahide Kiuchi said a "de-facto normalization" of monetary is already taking place with the central bank. And, the reappointment of Haruhiko Kuroda as Governor, and Executive Director Masayoshi Amamiya as the next deputy, showed the governments wants "continuity". Therefore, under the new board, BoJ will continue with such "virtual normalization". Meanwhile, Kiuchi said the reappointment of Kuroda shows Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is more focused on maintaining market stability and sustaining growth, rather than achieving the inflation target.

SPD members to vote on grand coalition

In Germany, over 450k members of the Social Democratic party will start voting on reforming the grand coalition with Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union. They will have until March 2 to submit their votes. Result is expected to be announced on March 4. SPD leader Andrea Nahles said in an interview that there will be an "intense debate". She also said earlier that there is no "Plan B" if the notion is voted down by SPD members. And a new election could be the ultimate outcome should that happens. Newspaper Bild am Sonntag polled the mayors of the 35 biggest towns and cities ruled by the SPD. 26 of them said they back the notion. So far, the vote is wide open.

Elsewhere

New Zealand PPI input rose 0.9% qoq in Q4, PPI output rose 1.0% qoq. German PPI, ZEW will be the main focus in European session. Swiss will release trade balance while UK will release CBI trends total orders. Eurozone will also release consumer confidence. Canada wholesale sales will be featured.

EUR/AUD Daily Outlook

Daily Pivots: (S1) 1.5653; (P) 1.5675; (R1) 1.5700; More….

EUR/AUD weakens notably today but stays above 1.5606 so far. Intraday bias stays neutral first with focus back on 1.5606. Firm break of 1.5606 will argue that a short term top is formed. Intraday bias will be turned back to the downside for 55 day EMA (now at 1.5476) and below. Nonetheless, break of 1.5816 should now confirm resumption of medium term rise from 1.3264. In that case, EUR/AUD should target 1.6587 key long term resistance.

In the bigger picture, medium term rise from 1.3624 is not completed yet. Sustained break of 1.5770 will extend the rise to retest 1.6587 (2015 high). However, considering bearish divergence condition in daily MACD, break of 1.4949 cluster support (38.2% retracement of 1.3624 to 1.5770 at 1.4950) will indicate medium term reversal. And there is prospect of retesting 1.3624 low in that bearish case.

Economic Indicators Update

GMT Ccy Events Actual Forecast Previous Revised
21:45 NZD PPI Input Q/Q Q4 0.90% 0.30% 1.00% 1.10%
21:45 NZD PPI Output Q/Q Q4 1.00% 0.40% 1.00%
0:30 AUD RBA February Meeting Minutes
7:00 EUR German PPI M/M Jan 0.50% 0.20%
7:00 EUR German PPI Y/Y Jan 1.80% 2.30%
7:00 CHF Trade Balance (CHF) Jan 2.78B 2.63B
10:00 EUR German ZEW Economic Sentiment Feb 16 20.4
10:00 EUR German ZEW Current Situation Feb 94 95.2
10:00 EUR Eurozone ZEW Economic Sentiment Feb 28.4 31.8
11:00 GBP CBI Trends Total Orders Feb 11 14
13:30 CAD Wholesale Trade Sales M/M Dec 0.40% 0.70%
15:00 EUR Eurozone Consumer Confidence Feb A 1 1.3

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