Wed. Jun 19th, 2024

United States RETAIL SALES RISE 0.7% IN MARCH VS. 0.3% EXPECTED

  • Retail Sales in the United States grew at a stronger pace than expected in March
  • US Dollar Index stays in positive territory above 106.00.

Retail Sales in the US rose 0.7% in March to $709.6 billion, the US Census Bureau reported on Monday. This reading followed the 0.9% increase (revised from 0.6%) recorded in January and came in better than the market expectation of 0.3%. Retail Sales ex Autos grew 1.1% in the same period.

“Total sales for the January 2024 through March 2024 period were up 2.1% from the same period a year ago,” the press release read. “Retail trade sales were up 0.8% from February 2024, and up 3.6% above last year.”

Market reaction

The US Dollar Index edged higher with the immediate reaction and was last seen rising 0.12% on the day at 106.14.

UNITED STATES RETAIL SALES (MOM) ABOVE FORECASTS (0.3%) IN MARCH: ACTUAL (0.7%)

UNITED STATES RETAIL SALES EX AUTOS (MOM) CAME IN AT 1.1%, ABOVE EXPECTATIONS (0.4%) IN MARCH

UNITED STATES NY EMPIRE STATE MANUFACTURING INDEX CAME IN AT -14.3 BELOW FORECASTS (-9) IN APRIL

UNITED STATES RETAIL SALES CONTROL GROUP ROSE FROM PREVIOUS 0% TO 1.1% IN MARCH

US DOLLAR RETREATS ON EASING MIDDLE-EAST TENSIONS AHEAD OF RETAIL SALES DATA

  • The US Dollar faces some selling pressure after the de-escalation of tensions in the Middle East.
  • Traders brace for US Retail Sales data on Monday. 
  • The US Dollar Index falls below 106.00 and looks for nearby support. 

The US Dollar (USD) retraces on Monday after a very strong week in which the Greenback seemed to be on steroids. Markets are breathing a sigh of relief after Iran carried out a well-communicated attack against Israel without significant casualties and issued a statement on Monday saying that it is not looking for further escalation of tensions in the Middle East. The easing of safe-haven demand triggers some inflow into risk assets, with equities firmly in the green in Europe and the US, and weighs on the US Dollar. 

On the economic data front, traders will face some key data at the start of the week. The main event on Monday is the US Retail Sales report for March. As always, any negative print in the actual number or a revision for the previous data will push the Greenback lower. Traders are thus warned that the revised numbers will be as important as the actual numbers. 

Daily digest market movers: Retail Sales lookout

  • At 12:30 GMT, most of the US data will be released:
    • The NY Empire Manufacturing Index for April is expected to rise to -9, from the -20.9 reading of the previous month.
    • The US Census Bureau will publish the Retail Sales for March:
      • Retail Sales are expected to increase 0.3% on a monthly basis in March following the 0.6% increase seen in February.
      • Retail Sales excluding transportation are expected to increase 0.4% in the month, slightly higher than the 0.3% registered in February.
  • At 14:00 GMT, the February Business Inventories data will be released. Markets are expecting a 0.3% increase from the previous month.
  • At 15:30 GMT, the US Treasury will auction a 3-month and a 6-month bill. 
  • Equities are in the green in Europe, with the German Dax up over 1%. US equity futures are also in the green, over 0.50% ahead of the US opening bell. 
  • According to the CME Group’s FedWatch Tool, expectations for a Fed pause in the May meeting are at 97.4%, while chances of a rate cut stand at 2.6%. The odds of a September rate cut have increased and are now higher than a cut at the June meeting.
  • The benchmark 10-year US Treasury Note trades around 4.56%, slightly higher than the opening price for this week at 4.53%.

US Dollar Index Technical Analysis: Correcting a touch

The US Dollar Index (DXY) is easing on Monday  ahead of the US Retail Sales numbers. The main driver for the retracement comes after Iran issued a statement this Monday saying that it does not want to seek any escalation in the Middle East. Markets are sending European and US equities higher, while safe-haven currencies are easing a touch, with the DXY Index retreating below 106.00.

On the upside, the first level for the DXY is the November 10 high at 106.01, just above the 106.00 figure. Further up and above the 107.00 round level, the DXY Index could meet resistance at 107.35, the October 3 high. 

On the downside, the first important level is 105.88, a pivotal level since March 2023. Further down, 105.12 and 104.60 should also act as a support, ahead of the region with both the 55-day and the 200-day Simple Moving Averages (SMAs) at 103.97 and 103.84, respectively.

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