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Mar. 13: Asian session

USD/JPY edged down to 102.60. Yen holds ground as there are concerns that Chinese economy is losing its spectacular growth pace. The nation’s industrial production added only 8.6% (forecast: +9.5%). The increase in fixed asset investment and retail sales was also significantly lower than expected. Japanese Nikkei is up by 0.5%. China’s Premier Li Keqiang pledged to control systemic risks in the financial system.

Commodity currencies are on demand on Thursday. AUD/USD recovered ground, retracing from the yesterday’s low of $0.8920 towards the key near-term resistance of $0.9080. Australia February employment rose more than three times above the forecast (47.3K vs. expected 15.3). What’s more, the January reading was revised from the negative territory to 18K. Unemployment rate held at 6.0%. However, the downbeat China data is likely to bring the Aussie under pressure. NZD/USD rocketed by 130 pips from $0.8430 to $0.8570 on the Reserve Bank of New Zealand meeting outcome. As it was widely expected, the RBNZ hiked rates from 2.50% to 2.75% early in the session. Market expectations for another rate hike in the coming months are high.

EUR/USD rose to $1.3948. GBP/USD rose to $1.6670.


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