Mar. 28: Asian session
Asian shares rose, with the regional benchmark heading for its biggest weekly increase since April. The MSCI Asia Pacific Index rose 0.4% (weekly gain is 2.9%). Japanese Nikkei is up by 0.4%.
USD/JPY is little changed in the 102.20/00 area. Japanese inflation figures made a positive input for the Bank of Japan, which aims to achieve an era of sustainable 2% inflation in the economy. Tokyo core CPI came at 1% (forecast: 0.9%). Japanese CPI ex food was unchanged at 1.3%. The unemployment rate and the retail sales were slightly better than expected. Still the pair’s rather calm as players wait for the important data releases due next week.
AUD/USD went up almost reaching $0.9300. Aussie’s strengthening for the 6th day in a row. NZD/USD rose to the levels just below $0.8700, the highest level in 2 1/2 years. Aussie and kiwi rose as China’s Premier Li Keqiang said he’s confident growth will be in a “reasonable range” and the nation can’t ignore “difficulties and risks” from downward pressure on Asia’s biggest economy. Li’s comments encouraged people to think that China is going to provide additional stimulus or is prepared to act against weakness thus making traders optimistic.
EUR/USD edged up to $1.3750 after yesterday it closed below this level. Euro traded near a 3-week low before data on Monday forecast to show inflation in the region slowed. GBP/USD rose a bit, to $1.6620, but is below yesterday’s high at $1.6646.