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OctaFX.Com - Financial News and Analysis

Discussion in 'Forex' started by OctaFX_Farid, Mar 7, 2012.

  1. OctaFX_Farid

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    [​IMG]Dear members we provides the latest market-based economy reviews. Please track our Analytical comments and research news and youll be informed about Forex veracities. We are anticipating that our indepth reviews must lift the standards of your trading. Analytical support is one of our massive advantages. Octafx has a large internal analytical section, gathering top level professionals in market research. Our analysts provides round-the-clock analytical support covering over 120 total market news, comments, opinions, predictions and much more. Our seasoned analysts also provides comments for several business broadcasting companies and TV shows.

     
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    Risk currencies on defensive on fresh Greece doubts

    TOKYO (Reuters) - Risk currencies were on the defensive while the Japanese yen held firm on Wednesday as doubts over whether Greece can pull together a bond swap deal with creditors prompted players to cut exposure to risky assets.

    Among the biggest casualties, the Australian dollar slid to a near six-week low against the U.S. dollar, while the country's growth in October-December also turned out to be lower than expected.

    A clutch of Greek pension funds and some foreign investors are holding back on the bond swap deal, raising fears that Greece may not secure a deal with private creditors to cut its mountainous debt by the Thursday deadline.

    A low participation in the bond swap plan, a key part of a bailout program to help Greece manage its wrecked finances and meet a debt repayment on March 20, could lead to the disorderly default policymakers have been toiling to avoid.

    "I think we are at a watershed now. If the Greek debt swap goes well and the U.S. job data points to continued recovery, then the market could return to the risk-on mood," said a trader at a Japanese bank.

    "But if Greece could not get the deal, then that would be a game changer," he added.

    The euro plumbed a three-week low at $1.3103 on EBS late on Tuesday, but has managed to stay above solid supports around $1.31, including the cloud top of daily Ichimoku charts at $1.3097 and the 76.4 percent retracement of its rally in mid to late February at $1.3095.

    It bounced back in Asia to around $1.3142, up 0.2 percent from late U.S. levels as the disappointing Australian data prompted unwinding of short positions against the Aussie, a popular trade this year.

    The euro rose 0.2 percent to A$1.2460. It hit a record low around $1.2124 last month as investors sold the euro for the Aussie on the view that a high-yielding Aussie will benefit from a massive fund injection from the European Central Bank.

    The Aussie fell to a six-week low against the U.S. dollar after disappointing Australian GDP data, shedding some 3 U.S. cents from a seven-month high set just last week.

    The Aussie touched a low of $1.0508, briefly breaking below a major support of $1.0525, before paring losses to fetch $1.0550.

    A clean break of $1.0525 could pave the way for a move to the $1.0370-00 major pivot, traders said.

    GROWTH WORRIES

    Apart from Greece, there are other risk events ahead, not least closely watched Chinese inflation and U.S. jobs data on Friday.

    China cut its growth target to the lowest level in eight years and Brazil announced a disappointing economic performance for 2011, raising doubts on the rosy scenario that emerging market powerhouses will offset weak growth in the advanced economies.

    Nervous investors unwound some of the recent bearish positions placed on the Japanese currency, helping the yen firm across the board.

    The dollar fell as low as 80.56 yen, well down from a nine-month peak of 81.87 set earlier this month, although it handily held above a key support from 23.6 percent of its February rally at 80.50.

    "Since the yen had been sold sharply recently, there is room for more adjustment. But I do think there's pretty strong dollar demand at around 80 yen," said Sumino Kamei, senior currency analyst at the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ.

    Traders said a break above 81.60 is now needed to reset the upwards momentum for dollar/yen and put 82.20 back in focus.

    The euro also pulled further away from a recent high of 109.95 yen to stand at 106.25 yen.

    Renewed pressure on the single currency saw the dollar rise 0.7 percent against a basket of major currencies on Tuesday to its highest since Feb 16.

    The dollar index <.DXY> stood at 79.68 in Asia, not far from Tuesday's high of 79.867, and it now eyes a test of a very thin cloud on daily Ichimoku charts, a break above which could be considered as a major bull sign.

    On Wednesday, the bottom of the cloud comes at 79.854 and the top at 79.867, which means the index needs to rise above Tuesday's high to break above the cloud.

    Mar 07, 2012 03:23

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    Euro rises but vulnerable to Greece uncertainty

    LONDON (Reuters) - The euro recovered from a three-week low against the dollar on Wednesday but was vulnerable to further losses on uncertainty about whether Greece would win sufficient support for a debt restructuring.

    A clutch of Greek pension funds and some foreign investors are holding back on a bond swap deal which would enable Greece to meet a debt repayment on March 20, sparking concerns about a chaotic default if participation is low.

    Given the uncertainty, gains in the single currency were expected to be limited. Analysts and traders said the market was pricing in an assumption that the debt deal would be agreed, leaving scope for disappointment.

    Greek private creditors have until late Thursday to say whether they will take part. Further hints of hesitance could see the euro retest Tuesday's three-week low at $1.3103.

    "There's a negative skew for the euro because most of the good news is priced in terms of getting an agreement on private sector involvement," said Carl Hammer, chief currency strategist at SEB in Stockholm.

    "If it is passed the bounce in the euro would be short-lived." SEB sees the euro at $1.30 by the end of March, though this assumes the debt restructuring goes through.

    The euro was up 0.2 percent at $1.3136, with traders citing Middle East and corporate buying as well as talk of reported Asian sovereign bids around $1.3100. Reported offers below $1.3175 may cap its rise, however.

    Greece aims to persuade 90 percent of creditors to take part in the bond swap. With two-thirds acceptance or more, however, it may be able to trigger collective action clauses to force bondholders to accept losses.

    "The Greek PSI (bond swap) deal might well go through ... But beyond that the outlook for the euro is still weak," said Melinda Burgess, currency strategist at RBS.

    She said the psychological $1.30 level was likely to provide strong support and could slow the euro's decline. Once below there, however, it could move lower "fairly rapidly." RBS forecasts the euro to fall to $1.26 by the end of this month.

    Others said the euro had short-term chart support around $1.31, including the cloud top on daily Ichimoku charts at $1.3097 and the 76.4 percent retracement of its rally in mid- to late February at $1.3095.

    GROWTH WORRIES

    Apart from Greece, Chinese inflation and U.S. jobs data on Friday and a European Central Bank policy meeting on Thursday would set the tone for markets, traders said.

    China this week cut its growth target to its lowest level in eight years and Brazil announced a disappointing economic performance for 2011, raising doubts that emerging market powerhouses can offset weak growth in the advanced economies.

    The higher-yielding and growth-linked Australian dollar was up 0.1 percent at $1.0565, having earlier hit a six-week low of $1.0508 after disappointing Australian economic growth data.

    It was also vulnerable as Greece concerns prompted investors to cut exposure to risky assets. The Aussie has shed some 3 U.S. cents since hitting a seven-month high of $1.0857 last week. More losses could see it fall towards $1.0350, analysts said.

    The U.S. dollar was down 0.1 percent at 80.75 yen as investors unwound recent bearish positions placed on the Japanese currency.

    It held above support at 80.50 yen, the 23.6 percent retracement of its February rally. The euro pulled further away from a recent high of 109.95 yen to trade up 0.1 percent at 106.12 yen.

    Mar 07, 2012 11:50

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    Euro rises vs dollar ahead of Greek bond swap

    Euro turns higher against the dollar as traders wait for results from Greek bond swap deal

    NEW YORK (AP) -- The euro turned higher against the dollar as more investors agreed to participate in Greece's debt restructuring deal.

    Greece needs to complete the bond swap to get its second package of bailout funds and avoid default. Investors who agree to participate will have to trade their Greek government bonds for new ones with lower value and lower returns.

    Private investors who own nearly half of Greece's debt have already committed to the swap. The rest have until Thursday to do so. Traders are still cautious that not enough bondholders will participate, which is keeping the euro from rising higher against the dollar.

    The euro rose to $1.3148 in midday trading Wednesday from $1.3110 Tuesday.

    In other trading, the British pound rose to $1.5741 from $1.5711. The dollar fell to 0.9168 Swiss franc from 0.9190 Swiss franc and to 99.96 Canadian cents from 1.0021 Canadian dollar.

    Mar 07, 2012 17:30

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    Japanese Yen Uninspired by Eco Watchers Survey Release

    Traders response to the Eco Watchers Survey was muted as a slight shortfall of expectations leads to no major portfolio changes

    THE TAKEAWAY: Eco Watchers Survey Slightly Below Expectations > Traders Unfazed by Small Deviation from Forecast > USDJPY Trades Sideways

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    Data released by the Japanese Economic and Social Research Institute showed that business confidence rose in the month of February among workers in cyclical market sectors. The Eco Watchers Survey current index rose to 45.9 from 44.1, falling slightly short of analysts expectations of 46. The outlook index rose to 50.1 from 47.1.

    Traders had already priced in their expectations regarding the figures, so the datas release led to no major portfolio rebalancing. The slight shortfall of the current index did not faze the markets. The USDJPY maintained its trendless trading.

    Mar 08, 2012 05:18

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    Euro holds gains on Greek relief; yen slips

    SINGAPORE (Reuters) - The euro dipped on Friday but held on to the bulk of the previous day's gains after Greece moved closer to securing fresh funds needed to avoid a messy debt default.

    The single currency eased 0.1 percent to $1.3267 after rallying about 1 percent on Thursday, its losses limited after Greece successfully closed its bond swap offer to private creditors.

    "The euro has reacted positively to the removal of near-term anxiety (over Greece)," said a trader for a major Japanese bank in Singapore, adding that the ECB's comments on inflation the previous day were also lending the single currency support.

    The ECB left interest rates unchanged at 1 percent on Thursday but gave a surprise warning on inflation, suggesting further policy easing was unlikely.

    The yen dipped to a 9-1/2 month low versus the dollar of 81.899 yen on trading platform EBS at one point, pressured by yen-selling by Japanese importers and stop-loss selling, traders said.

    The positive news on Greece was another factor that weighed on the yen, a safe haven currency that tends to come under pressure when investors' risk tolerance increases.

    The dollar last stood at 81.80 yen, up 0.3 percent from late U.S. trade on Thursday.

    Commodity currencies were steady to firmer with the Australian dollar holding flat at $1.0644 after having risen around 0.6 percent on Thursday, while the New Zealand dollar rose 0.2 percent to $0.8263.

    With Greece's debt swap headed for success, analysts said they expected investors' appetite for risky assets to hold firm in the near term.

    Such positive risk sentiment can weigh on funding currencies including the dollar and the yen, while supporting currencies leveraged to global growth like the Australian dollar.

    To be sure, the exact take-up of Greece's debt swap was unknown and it was not yet clear whether Greece could avoid activating collective action clauses (CAC), which would enforce the debt exchange on recalcitrant holdouts.

    If they are, that could trigger payouts on credit default swaps (CDS) that some investors hold on Greece's bonds.

    Rob Ryan, FX strategist for BNP Paribas in Singapore, said the take-up for Greece's debt swap may not be high enough for Greece to avoid activating the enforcement clauses, but added that market players were likely prepared for that possibility.

    "We think that they're not going to have the 90 plus percent that they want and that they will have to activate the CAC," Ryan said.

    "That's what we assume is going to happen, and in fact there's an argument now that says that if it's not triggered, there's going to be worries about who bought CDS as insurance and now finds that the insurance is useless," he said.

    "So at this stage, it may be less damaging to trigger the CACs and therefore the credit default (swaps)," Ryan said.

    Preliminary results of Greece's bond swap offer are expected to be announced officially at 0600 GMT, before a conference call with euro zone finance ministers in the afternoon.

    U.S. jobs data due late on Friday will also be closely watched, especially after the Wall Street Journal reported earlier in the week that Federal Reserve officials were considering sterilized quantitative easing to further help the economic recovery.

    An outcome that bolsters such expectations could be the dollar's undoing.

    "Our long-term view is still that the EUR/USD will be higher and the relative hawkishness of comments from ECB President Mario Draghi is a reminder that at its heart, the ECB 'wants' to normalize policy while Ben Bernanke 'wants' to buy more protection against disaster," said Kit Juckes, strategist at Societe Generale.

    Mar 09, 2012 05:17

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    OctaFX.Com - British Pound At Risk Amid Weakening Labor Market, Slowing Trade

    Fundamental Forecast for British Pound: Neutral

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    The British Pound pared the sharp selloff from Friday to maintain the range carried over from the previous month, and the sterling should continue to track sideways in the following week as market participants weigh the outlook for monetary policy. Indeed the Bank of England refrained from releasing a policy statement after the central bank kept the benchmark interest rate at 0.50% while maintain its asset purchase program at GBP 325B, and we may see the GBPUSD works its way back towards the top of the range as the exchange rate continues to hold above the February low (1.5644).

    As market participants look forward to the BoE Minutes due out on March 21, the range-bound price action could ultimately lead to another run at 1.6000, but we may see the sterling struggle to hold its ground next week as the economic docket is expected to highlight a slowing recovery for the U.K. Indeed, fears of a double-dip recession may resurface amid the ongoing weakness in the labor market paired with the slowdown in global trade, and we may see the British Pound quickly give back the advance from earlier this year as currency traders see scope for more quantitative easing in 2012. As the fundamental outlook for Britain remains clouded with high uncertainty, the policy statement could foreshadow a growing rift within the Monetary Policy Committee, but we may see Governor Mervyn King scale back his dovish tone for monetary policy as BoE officials talk down the risk of undershooting the 2% target for inflation. As BoE officials expect to see a stronger recovery later this year, the MPC may see scope to conclude its easing cycle in 2012, and the central bank may lay the foundation to start normalizing monetary policy in the following year as growth and inflation picks up.

    As the GBPUSD clears the 50-Day SMA (1.5677), a slew of dismal developments coming out of the U.K. could spark a bearish breakdown in the exchange rate, and we may see the pair work its way back towards the 50.0% Fibonacci retracement from the 2009 low to high around 1.5300 as it searches for support. However, as long as the February low (1.5644) holds up, we should see the pair track sideways ahead of the BoE Minutes, and we may see the sterling move against its major counterparts should the central bank talk down speculation for additional asset purchases. DS

    Mar 10, 2012 00:34

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    OctaFX.Com - Copper weakens as China demand worry persists

    SINGAPORE (Reuters) - London copper edged lower on Monday as persistent concerns about sluggish demand in China took the momentum out of a three-day rally, but optimism on the global economy after upbeat U.S. jobs data is likely to cushion the price slide.

    Copper rallied about 2 percent on Friday, after better-than-expected U.S. labor market data boosted confidence in the recovery of the world's largest economy, and Greece's success with a debt swap deal eased fears about euro zone debt crisis for the time being.

    But the dim prospects of copper consumption in China, as reflected in multi-year high stockpiles in warehouses monitored by the Shanghai Futures Exchange, kept investors wary.

    "Theoretically we are in the peak consumption season but it doesn't feel like it this year," said a Shanghai-based physical copper trader, "Factories are not in any rush to stockpile the material, as the overall economic situation has weakened."

    Prices below 58,000 yuan a tonne have attracted buying, but the current level was not at all attractive, he added.

    China, the world's top consumer of raw materials including copper, has cut its 2012 growth target to an eight-year low of 7.5 percent, dampening hopes that its appetite for these materials would continue to expand rapidly.

    Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange lost 0.3 percent to $8,461 a tonne by 0300 GMT, reversing course after three sessions of consecutive rise.

    The most-traded June copper contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange edged up 0.3 percent to 60,700 yuan ($9,600)a tonne.

    Mar 12, 2012 03:17

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    Yen rises after no surprises from BOJ

    TOKYO (Reuters) - The yen rose against the dollar and other major currencies on Tuesday after the Bank of Japan refrained from taking drastic easing steps after a two-day policy meeting.

    The dollar fell to around 82.10 yen from around 82.35 yen following the BOJ's decision.

    While few expected fresh easing, market players were nervous after the central bank surprised the market by boosting asset purchases last month.

    Mar 13, 2012 05:32

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    Dollar hits 11-month high versus yen, euro slips

    LONDON (Reuters) - The dollar hit an 11-month high against the yen and hovered near a seven-week high versus a basket of currencies on Tuesday, backed by expectations that a U.S. economic revival will keep the Federal Reserve from resorting to fresh stimulus.

    The dollar recouped knee-jerk losses against the yen made after the Bank of Japan stopped short of taking aggressive easing steps on Tuesday. That wrongfooted investors who had bet on a repeat of the central bank's surprise easing last month.

    The greenback is being supported by signs of improvement in the world's biggest economy. Data last Friday showed February was the third straight month to record a gain of more than 200,000 jobs.

    The dollar index <.DXY> stood at 80.008, not far from a high of 80.132 struck on Monday, its highest in seven weeks.

    Analysts say that with the Fed unlikely to be in a hurry to announce fresh measures, given that its $400 billion stimulus program known as Operation Twist, is in play, the focus would be on retail sales for February.

    Retail sales are expected to reflect solid car and gasoline sales and are likely to push the dollar higher, especially against the yen.

    "There is an upside risk to U.S. retail sales data, given the underperformance seen last month. That should give reasonable support to the dollar against the yen," said Steve Barrow, head of G10 currency research at Standard Bank.

    The dollar rose to 82.795 yen on trading platform EBS after stop loss buy orders were triggered above Friday's high of 82.65. Traders reported option structures at 83.00 which were attracting protective dollar sell orders.

    A break above 83.00 would expose resistance at 83.11 yen, the 76.4 percent retracement of the dollar's decline from April to a record low in October last year. The yen's losses have gathered pace since the surprise BoJ easing and there were some expectations it might have acted again on Tuesday.

    "Speculators were positioning for more aggressive easing from the BOJ and so far those expectations have been disappointed," said Lee Hardman, currency strategist at BTM-UFJ.

    "We expect the dollar to outperform generally but against the yen it looks to have come too far in the short-term."

    Dealers said a widening in the spread between two-year U.S. government bond yields and their Japanese equivalents was helping to support dollar/yen.

    The premium in favor of U.S. yields was last at 21.4 basis points, the highest since August 2011. The spread is closely correlated with dollar/yen.

    LIFE AFTER GREECE

    The dollar's strength saw the euro ease and move closer towards a one-month low struck on Monday. The common currency is still smarting from fears the European debt crisis could worsen, despite Greece's success in securing a debt-cutting swap deal.

    The euro was down at 0.3 percent on the day at $1.3115, not far from a one-month low of $1.3079. Technical support for the euro is at its daily Ichimoku cloud top at $1.3087 and the 55-day moving average around $1.3081.

    Westpac strategists said they have entered a short euro/dollar trade. They have sold euros at $1.3180 and would look to sell more into a rally to $1.3350.

    The currency's outlook remains shaky given that the euro zone economy is slipping into recession, in contrast with a brightening picture in the United States.

    While the euro is supported by relief after Greece successfully swapped most of its privately-held bonds and cut its debt by more than 100 billion euros, many market players are concerned that other peripheral countries like Portugal may suffer a similar fate.

    The Australian dollar bounced back after hitting a seven-week low of $1.0475 on Monday, to trade at $1.0528. While its latest rebound could open the way for a test of resistance around $1.0670, the currency is for now stalling at $1.0545, capped by its 55-day moving average around $1.0555.

    Mar 13, 2012 11:41

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    Dollar stronger across the board, hits 11-mth high vs yen

    TOKYO (Reuters) - The dollar hit an 11-month high against the yen and 1-month high on the euro on Wednesday, extending its gains after a modest brightening of the Federal Reserve's economic forecasts nudged traders to downplay expectations of further monetary easing.

    U.S. 2-year Treasury yields hit a 7-1/2-month high after solid retail sales data, making the dollar less attractive as a funding currency for carry trades. Tokyo exporters were also reluctant to sell it now, expecting more strength, traders said.

    These factors saw the dollar hit a session high at 83.32 yen, its highest level since mid-April, with most traders expecting a short correction soon, before refocusing on last year's high at 85.53 yen.

    "The move in the yields was essential for the dollar rally to continue," said Sumino Kamei, senior currency analyst at the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ in Tokyo.

    Recent easing steps by the Bank of Japan, the country's trading deficit amid surging demand for fossil fuels in the wake of the nuclear crisis have also helped the dollar rise a staggering 9 percent on the yen since the beginning of February.

    "We are getting to a point where people will be looking for a trigger to take profits on this rise. There aren't many scheduled events that could prop it further, while risks -- most notably elevated oil prices -- loom large."

    But investors said that a pullback in the dollar would likely be limited to the mid-82 area with the previous high of 82.65 lending support. Longer term, they were mostly bullish, with Barclays Capital raising its three month target to 88 yen.

    The U.S. unit gained also against all other currencies, with its index hitting a 7-1/2-week high of 80.42 <.DXY>.

    Hot on the heels of Friday's encouraging U.S. jobs report, a strong 1.1 percent rise in retail sales provided fresh evidence of improvement in the world's largest economy.

    Acknowledging this trend, the Fed slightly upgraded its outlook, expecting "moderate" growth over coming quarters and a gradual decline in the unemployment rate, although it said the jobless rate "remains elevated.

    "There is nothing for risky assets not to love about the Fed stance; either the economic outlook will continue to improve, or the Fed will take action to inject more liquidity into markets," said Julia Coronado, BNP Paribas chief economist for North America.

    Mar 14, 2012 07:03

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    Australian Dollar Falls Without Regard to Rising Inflation Expectation

    The Australian Dollar dismissed rising expectations for consumer inflation as overall risk appetite continued to deteriorate, pushing the currency downward.

    THE TAKEAWAY: Aussie Consumer Inflation Expectation Rose to 2.7% from 2.5% > Market Risk Aversion in the Face of Slowing Chinese Growth Poor for Aussie Dollar > AUDUSD Continued to Fall

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    Data released by the Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research showed that Australian inflation expectations rose this month. The countrys consumers expected price levels to rise to 2.7 percent for the month of March, up from 2.5 percent during February.

    The Australian Dollar has been trending downwards this month as overarching risk appetite has moved traders away from the Aussie. Recent negative growth estimates in China have tempered appetites for the currency. China is Australias largest consumer of mining and construction exports, and slower Chinese economic growth equates to a decline in demand for Aussie goods. Contracting demand for Australian exports would hurt to countrys manufacturing and mining sectors, and the Australian dollar would suffer as a result.

    The inflation estimates have hovered in between the 2.4 percent to 2.8 percent range for the last five months, and Marchs figure certainly continues the pattern. Markets appeared unaffected by the data, and the AUDUSD continued its slow trend downward.

    Mar 15, 2012 01:24

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    LME copper slips on firmer dollar, Shanghai rises

    SINGAPORE (Reuters) - London copper futures edged lower on Friday, hurt by a firmer dollar, after rising more than 1 percent in the previous session on a tighter global supply outlook.

    FUNDAMENTALS

    * Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange dropped $22 to $8,543 a tonne by 0119 GMT. But the metal is up marginally for the week so far, its third gain in four weeks.

    * The most-traded June copper contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange gained 0.7 percent to 60,850 yuan ($9,600) a tonne, chasing Thursday's gains in London.

    * Freeport McMoran Copper & Gold Inc said first-quarter copper output would be down by about 10 percent because of labor-related problems at its Grasberg mine in Indonesia which will not return to full production until the second quarter.

    * LME copper has risen more than 12 percent so far this year, benefitting, like other risk assets, from increased liquidity across markets as central banks around the world ease credit curbs to spur economic growth.

    * Copper's price gain comes despite a shaky outlook for demand from top consumer China. Premier Wen Jiabao said on Wednesday China must embrace slower growth and bolder political reform to keep its economy from faltering, and also dampened hopes for any near-term relaxation of curbs in the property sector.

    * Aurubis , Europe's biggest copper producer, is confident of strong copper demand from China this year despite forecasts of slower growth in the country.

    * RUSAL Plc <0486.HK>, the world's largest aluminum company, is expected to pick a new chairman on Friday to steady a ship still rocking from the parting shot fired by Viktor Vekselberg, who said it was in "deep crisis".

    * For the top stories in metals and other news, click , or

    MARKETS NEWS

    * The dollar rose against a basket of currencies <.DXY>, with the greenback's upward momentum seen intact amid a brightening U.S. outlook.

    * The S&P 500 closed above 1,400 for the first time since the 2008 financial crisis on Thursday as stocks resumed the upward climb that has produced a steady stream of gains this year. <.N>

    * U.S. crude futures rose on Friday, after dropping for two straight sessions, as robust economic data in the world's top oil consumer countered news that the United States and Britain were preparing a release from strategic oil stocks this year.

    Mar 16, 2012 02:56

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    EUR/USD: The market has been well supported on the latest dip towards key support at 1.2975 and the subsequent bounce back above 1.3100 delays bearish prospects and opens the door for additional consolidation over the coming days. The key levels to watch above and below come in by 1.3300 and 1.2975 respectively and a break and close above or below will be required for clearer directional bias. In the interim we remain sidelined.

    Mar 19 2012 ,

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  15. OctaFX_Farid

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    EUR/USD: The market has been well supported on the latest dip towards key support at 1.2975 and the subsequent bounce back above 1.3100 delays bearish prospects and opens the door for additional consolidation over the coming days. The key levels to watch above and below come in by 1.3300 and 1.2975 respectively and a break and close above or below will be required for clearer directional bias. In the interim we remain sidelined.

    Mar 19 2012 ,

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  16. OctaFX_Farid

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    Euro, shares dip as growth worries revive

    LONDON (Reuters) -The euro dipped to just below recent highs and European stocks fell on Tuesday amid concern about the scale of China's growth slowdown, while investors eyed crucial talks between Italy's government and unions on labor reforms.

    Prime Minister Mario Monti's meeting with union bosses could make or break his brief tenure as head of a government struggling to pay down massive debts and find ways to revive an economy in which factory output has fallen sharply.

    Ahead of the meeting, equity investors were trimming positions after shares rose to eight-month peaks on signs of a recovery in the giant U.S. economy and after big improvements in corporate balance sheets.

    "Strategically, I am bullish on equities," Neil Dwane, chief investment officer for Europe at Allianz Global Investors/RCM, said.

    "The thing is that they have rallied quite a long way, so it's harder to be as confident when you think: have we solved any of the economic issues?"

    The FTSE Eurofirst 300 <.FTEU3> was down 0.5 percent at 1,099.71 points after snapping a four-session winning streak on Monday that saw it touch levels last seen in July.

    Traders' growing nervousness about the outlook could be seen in the Euro STOXX 50 volatility index <.V2TX>, a key gauge of sentiment, which jumped 4.3 percent after three days of falls. The higher the volatility index, the lower the investor appetite to take on more risk.

    RECOVERY HOPES IN THE BALANCE

    Meanwhile U.S. Treasury yields, which have risen sharply in the past week on the improved U.S. economic outlook and reduced expectations of further monetary easing in the near term, also dipped on Tuesday but the fall was expected to be short lived.

    "I think that movement (in U.S. Treasury yields)...is definitely a confirmation that the market is switching much more in terms of its mentality towards a recovery mentality," Graham Neilson, chief investment strategist at Cairn Capital said.

    "I think yields are going to go higher from here as well."

    The 10-year U.S. Treasury yield, which moves inversely to price, stood at 2.35 percent after rising as high as 2.392 percent on Monday, its highest level since late October.

    German government bond yields followed Treasuries and dipped slightly as investors were lured back into the market after 10-year yields broke last week above 2 percent, the upper end of the year's trading range to that point.

    Among the weaker euro zone economies, Italian bonds rose on wariness about the labor talks, and 10-year yields were last up 4.2 bps at 4.88 percent.

    The equivalent Spanish yield was up 4 bps at 5.21 percent after ratings agency Moody's said Spain's fiscal outlook remained challenging despite recently softened deficit targets.

    Commodities were broadly weaker, with base and precious metals both edging down after the worries about a sharp slowdown in China grew when BHP Billiton , the world's biggest miner, noted signs of "flattening" iron ore demand there.

    Earlier this month China cut its 2012 growth target to an eight-year low of 7.5 percent, fuelling caution about demand for natural resources and heightening fears the euro zone crisis would hit global growth.

    Mar 20, 2012

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  17. OctaFX_Farid

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    Dollar gains broadly as growth currencies slip

    LONDON (Reuters) -The dollar index climbed against a basket of currencies on Tuesday, helped by higher U.S. Treasury yields, while growth-linked currencies came under pressure from concerns China's demand for raw materials could be slowing.

    Global miner BHP Billiton said it saw signs growth in iron ore demand was flattening in China, Australia's single biggest export market, pushing the Australian dollar more than 1 percent lower on the day to $1.0488.

    "The (U.S.) dollar looks better bid against the euro and the yen. Interest rate expectations do seem to be gaining a bit more traction on the currency," said Daragh Maher, currency strategist at HSBC.

    "But it strikes me the move in the Australian dollar may be a bit overdone. I would think it's a good idea to buy Aussie on these dips."

    The dollar index <.DXY> rose 0.3 percent to 79.692, recovering from a one-week low hit the previous day. Analysts said much of the greenback's recent surge was due to improving U.S. data and a modest brightening of the U.S. Federal Reserve's economic outlook in its latest policy statement.

    That spurred a rise in U.S. Treasury yields as investors scaled back expectations of further quantitative easing in the near term, and prompted some speculation the Fed may tighten monetary policy earlier than it had pledged.

    The 10-year U.S. Treasury yield rose to as high as 2.392 percent on Monday, its highest level since late October. The two-year Treasury yield was last trading at roughly 0.367 percent, in sight of last week's peak of 0.414 percent which was the highest since late July.

    But some strategists said the move in the greenback and U.S. Treasury yields could soon run out of steam.

    "The recent dollar rally has been based on unrealistic expectations for U.S. rates and I don't think it is well founded," said Adam Cole, global head of FX strategy at RBC Capital Markets.

    "The market is priced for rate hikes much earlier than the FOMC (Federal Open Market Committee) has indicated."

    ITALY TALKS EYED

    The euro eased 0.3 percent to $1.3196, slipping away from a one-week high near $1.3266 hit on Monday and below support from the 100-day moving average around $1.3199.

    Some investors were cautious about pushing the shared currency higher ahead of talks between Italy's government and unions on reforms seen as key to turning around the euro zone's third largest economy and paying down massive debts.

    There have been some signs of stabilization in the euro zone sovereign bond market this year, with the 10-year Italian government bond yield spread over German Bunds standing at 286 basis points on Tuesday, down from 535 basis points on January 9.

    But concerns remained that Portugal may eventually need to restructure its debt like Greece, prompting another flare up in the crisis, while Italy is potentially a far bigger worry.

    Moves in the dollar versus the yen picked up in European trade after a quiet Asian session when Japanese financial markets were closed for a national holiday.

    Mar 20, 2012 09:17

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  18. OctaFX_Farid

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    Copper falls on China demand concerns, dollar strength

    LONDON (Reuters) - Copper fell on Tuesday as the dollar strengthened and equities markets retreated and after BHP Billiton , the world's biggest miner, raised concerns about the possibility of a sharp slowdown in iron ore demand from top metals consumer China.

    Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange was $8,408 per ton in official rings from a close of $8,570 on Monday. It was down more than 2 percent after U.S. housing data, before recouping some of those losses.

    U.S. housing starts fell last month, but permits for future construction jumped to their highest level since October 2008, according to a government report that showed steady improvement in the housing market.

    "There is a big difference between permits being awarded, and building taking place, but the housing data should be notionally positive," Citi analyst David Wilson said.

    "There are still concerns that China is slowing and not consuming as much copper, that's definitely been an issue," he added.

    The metal, used extensively in construction, hit its highest in two weeks at $8,690 on Friday and is up more than 12 percent this year, but has struggled to breach that level.

    "It's choppy within a range. It's partly dollar strength, but also I suspect a rather more cautious commentary from BHP," BNP Paribas analyst Stephen Briggs said.

    "There is a slowing trend in China...moving increasingly away from the growth model that they have had, which may be a little less metals intensive. This is not new, but recognition by big mining companies would have had an effect."

    Australian iron ore miners, key beneficiaries of China's modern-day industrial revolution, signaled on Tuesday demand growth was finally slowing in response to Beijing's moves to cool its economy.

    BHP Billiton said it was seeing signs of "flattening" iron ore demand from China, though for now it was pushing ahead with ambitious plans to expand production.

    Official Chinese data last week showed home prices fell in February from January for a fifth consecutive month, and the government reaffirmed its commitment to measures to control the property market to cool speculation.

    China accounts for 40 percent of global refined copper demand. Copper is used mostly in building construction and power.

    Demand in the world's biggest copper consumer has not picked up after the Lunar New Year holiday in late January, prompting importers to delay some term shipments, traders have said.

    The dollar rose against a basket of currencies, supported by safe-haven demand as risk sentiment soured, partly because of concerns that a slowdown in China could hit global growth. <.DXY>

    Gains in the dollar can pressure dollar-denominated commodities by making them more expensive for consumers using other currencies.

    European stocks fell on the scale of China's growth slowdown, and investors eyed talks between Italy's government and unions on reforms seen key to turning around the euro zone's third-largest economy.

    Nickel, used in steelmaking, was $18,825 in rings from $19,050 at Monday's close. It is the worst performing base metal in the complex so far this year, and is up around 1.6 percent, compared with copper's 12 percent rise.

    "Exchange inventories have risen over 8 percent and Chinese premiums remain weak," RBC Base Metals said about nickel in a research note. "That said, a move below $18,000 will begin to see a supply-side response."

    Zinc, used to galvanize steel, was untraded in rings, but bid at $2,041 from $2,079.

    Tin, also untraded, was bid at $23,200 from $23,595, lead was bid at $2,062 from $2,108. Aluminum was $2,239 in rings from $2,275.

    LME aluminum stocks are near record highs at more than 5 million ton, but most of the metal is locked up in financing deals and not available for sale.

    The large stockpile, and the economic slowdown in Europe, has hurt aluminum prices, spurring global producers such as Rio Tinto , Alcoa and Norsk Hydro , to cut production.

    Metal Prices at 1337 GMT Comex copper in cents/lb, LME prices in $/T and SHFE prices in yuan/T

    Metal Last Change Pct Move End 2010 Ytd Pct

    move

    COMEX Cu 382.80 -7.90 -2.02 444.70 -13.92

    LME Alum 2243.00 -32.00 -1.41 2470.00 -9.19

    LME Cu 8400.00 -170.00 -1.98 9600.00 -12.50

    LME Lead 2057.00 -51.00 -2.42 2550.00 -19.33

    LME Nickel 18806.00 -244.00 -1.28 24750.00 -24.02

    LME Tin 23251.00 -344.00 -1.46 26900.00 -13.57

    LME Zinc 2036.25 -42.75 -2.06 2454.00 -17.02

    SHFE Alu 16265.00 -10.00 -0.06 16840.00 -3.41

    SHFE Cu* 60350.00 50.00 +0.08 71850.00 -16.01

    SHFE Zin 15885.00 10.00 +0.06 19475.00 -18.43 ** Benchmark month for COMEX copper * 3rd contract month for SHFE AL, CU and ZN SHFE ZN began trading on 26/3/07

    Mar 20, 2012 10:13

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  19. OctaFX_Farid

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    China growth worries weigh on stocks, boost Treasuries

    NEW YORK (Reuters) - Renewed concerns about China's economic growth weighed on global stocks on Tuesday, giving a boost to safe-haven U.S. government bonds and the dollar.

    U.S. crude oil prices dropped nearly 2 percent as increased supply from Saudi Arabia and a return to pre-war exports from Libya eased pressure on the market.

    Concerns about the scale of China's economic slowdown resurfaced as BHP Billiton , the world's largest miner, said it was seeing signs of "flattening" iron ore demand from the country.

    U.S. stock indexes traded more than half a percentage point lower after a rally on Monday drove the S&P 500 to a level less than 10 percent shy of its 2007 all-time high.

    "It seems like a market that probably just needs to take a rest, but I wouldn't be surprised (if) we rally into the day," said Jack Ablin, chief investment officer at Harris Private Bank in Chicago.

    "It is now a focus back on the fundamentals on the economy and those news items aren't quite as daunting. It's really just fine tuning."

    The Dow Jones industrial average (DJI:DJI) was down 66.41 points, or 0.50 percent, at 13,172.72. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index <.SPX> was down 6.54 points, or 0.46 percent, at 1,403.21. The Nasdaq Composite Index (NAS:COMP) was down 20.25 points, or 0.66 percent, at 3,058.07.

    The S&P 500 has gained more than 11 percent so far this year as a steady flow of strong U.S. economic data encouraged stock investors. Tuesday's U.S. housing data was mixed, however, with housing starts falling in February, but permits for future construction jumping to the highest level since October 2008.

    World stocks measured by the MSCI All-Country World Index <.MIWD00000PUS> dropped 0.76 percent, after closing on Monday near levels last seen in late July.

    In Europe, the FTSEurofirst 300 index <.FTEU3> fell 0.9 percent as autos and miners were hit by worries of a Chinese economic slowdown.

    "Stocks are being driven down on reports of major discounts amongst the luxury good car brands in China and comments about weak iron ore demand," said Richard Batty, strategist at Standard Life Investments, with $248.37 billion of assets under management.

    The dollar rose 0.1 percent against a basket of major trading-partner currencies, according to the U.S. Dollar Index <.DXY>, as Chinese economic worries weighed on growth-related currencies.

    The euro, however, was stable against the greenback at $1.3233.

    U.S. crude oil prices dropped 1.6 percent to $106.78 a barrel, also pressured by the strength of the dollar, which makes the commodity more expensive to non-U.S. investors.

    Benchmark 10-year Treasury notes were trading 1/32 higher in price to yield 2.37 percent, down from 2.38 percent late Monday, while 30-year bonds gained 11/32 to yield 3.46 percent, down from 3.48 percent. hitting a 2-1/2 week high of 79.739.

    Mar 20, 2012 10:42

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    Dollar rises as growth-linked currencies slip

    NEW YORK (Reuters) - The dollar gained against the euro and yen in quiet trade on Tuesday, while the Australian dollar tumbled on central bank hints of more room to ease and fears about China's growth.

    Global miner BHP Billiton said it saw signs that growth in iron ore demand was flattening in China, Australia's single biggest export market, pushing the Australian dollar down more than 1 percent.

    The Aussie was also undermined by minutes from Australia's central bank, which were deemed as dovish as they suggested that the bank has ample room to ease policy should conditions worsen.

    Against the U.S. dollar, the Australian dollar slid to $1.0492, down 1.1 percent for the day, while the New Zealand dollar slumped 1.3 percent to 0.8158.

    Key technical support for the Australian dollar lies at the 200-day simple moving average of $1.0401 while the 100-day SMA lies at $1.0370. Resistance is seen near $1.064.

    "In my opinion, there has been a bit of an overreaction to the BHP Billiton news because while it painted a bearish picture, it was not all that bad," said Brad Bechtel, managing director at Faros Trading in Stamford, Connecticut. "It nevertheless put the Australian dollar on its back foot."

    Most currency activity was in the crosses, with investors covering short positions in the euro while selling the Aussie, Kiwi and Canadian dollar, he said.

    "Euro/dollar is sidelined today and those trying to sell into rallies should continue to be frustrated as the currency pair remains stuck in a range," he said. "Having said that, news flow out of Europe should become more neutral-to-positive and that could take the euro higher."

    A recent surge in U.S. Treasury yields is likely behind the sudden breakdown in the correlation between the Australia dollar and U.S. dollar and the S&P 500 stock index, according to David Rodriguez, quantitative strategist at DailyFX in New York.

    The currency pair is trading near the middle of its year-to-date range while the S&P 500 index had recent hit its highest since the global financial crisis in 2008.

    "The clear disconnect suggests the correlation may have broken down," Rodriguez said. ""Yet the Aussie dollar continues to offer a substantial yield advantage to its U.S. namesake, and this may ultimately be the most important driver of AUDUSD moves for the foreseeable future."

    Mar 20, 2012 10:42

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