Aussie Soars on Industrial Metal’s Rally, Pound Steady on PMI & Retail Sales

Aussie Soars on Industrial Metal’s Rally, Pound Steady on PMI & Retail Sales

The early gains in the Australian market came after the mixed performance on Wall Street on Friday. The Australian dollar is outperforming the pound sterling as the strongest dollar for the week, helped by a return to risky markets. In particular, the industrial metal is rallying strongly, and copper is trading higher at the time of writing.

AUD/USD continued its daily rally at the start of the US session on Friday and hit its highest level in 35 months at 0.7877. At the time of writing, the pair is up 1.33% on the day to 0.7873. The unrelenting selling pressure surrounding the US dollar allows AUD/USD to maintain its bullish momentum ahead of the weekend.

Sterling continues to trade as one of the strongest in the week as the focus is on UK retail sales and PMIs. Additional surprises could lift the pound again. The Australian dollar remains the second strongest so far.

Retail sales in Australia rose 0.6% mom in January, below expectations of 2.0% mom. All states and territories, except Queensland, rose. New South Wales posted 1.0% growth as COVID-19 restrictions were eased in Greater Sydney in January. Queensland saw a 1.5% drop, and Brisbane’s COVID-19 restrictions saw the plunge. Ben James, director of Quarterly Economy Wide Surveys, said: “There are still differences in retail sales between states and territories as COVID-19 restrictions are tightened or relaxed in different parts of the country.”
Pound Sterling Remains Steady on PMI & Retail Sales
Sterling continues to trade as one of the strongest in the week as the focus is on UK retail sales and PMIs. Additional surprises could lift the pound again. Meanwhile, the pound sterling is oblivious to poor retail sales but has been buoyed by the PMI and optimistic comments from Bank of England officials.

Bank of England MPC member Gertjan Vlige said in his speech that “if the economy develops broadly in line with our central forecast for February, then, in my opinion, it is likely that no further monetary stimulus will be needed … we will just finish the announced program of quantitative easing ”.

The UK manufacturing PMI rose to 54.9 in February from 54.1, above expectations of 54.0. PMI Services rose to 49.7 from 39.5, higher than the 40.5 forecasts. The Composite PMI rose to 49.8 from 41.2.

GBP/USD has finally hit the round 1.40 level amid optimistic UK coronavirus statistics and a weaker dollar amid speculation about a yield boost. Both topics are expected to climax in the last week of February, while economic data will also have its time.

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Author : Azeez Mustapha

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Azeez Mustapha is an experienced author, trader, markets analyst, signals strategist, and funds-manager.