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A big week for the Loonie

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Pound Sterling

The Pound is little changed against the US Dollar and Euro as economists await the release of the latest services Purchasing Managers Index. The sector is expected to show that it expanded for a second month in February by posting a figure of 51. A reading above 50 indicates an expansion.

US Dollar

The ‘Greenback’ has weakened against the Euro due to an increase in risk appetite. The Dollar’s weakness, which often reflects investors’ willingness to take on more risk, came against the backdrop of widespread gains for Asian equities.

The Euro

The Euro has advanced against the US Dollar due to an increase in demand for riskier assets. The gains have recovered some of the losses it suffered as a result of the ongoing political uncertainty in Italy and the continued poor performance of Spain and Greece. Wednesday sees the release of a host of important data for the single currency region. The latest Eurozone GDP data will be released as well as the newest household consumption data.

Australian Dollar

The ‘Aussie’ has strengthened against most of its major counterparts due to the nation’s Central Bank choosing to maintain interest rates at 3%. The Australian currency rebounded from an eight-month low after Bank governor Glenn Stevens confirmed that the rate would remain unchanged. The decision came as a result of better-than expected retail sales data.

New Zealand Dollar

The ‘Kiwi’ strengthened after the Reserve Bank of Australia maintained rates at 3%. Australian retail sales rose more than expected in January and the current account deficit unexpectedly narrowed in the fourth quarter of 2012. RBA governor Glenn Stevens said it still has room to cut rates if it needs to, but that last year's stimulus is still working its way through the system.

Canadian Dollar

The ‘Loonie’ is still suffering from last week’s Gross domestic Product data release which showed that the Canadian economy grew less than expected. It grew by just 0.6% in the fourth quarter of 2012, short of economist predictions of an expansion of 1%.

This week sees the Bank of Canada release its latest interest rate decision on Wednesday and on Friday the markets will see the release of the newest batch of jobs data out of the nation and its biggest trade partner the USA.

South African Rand

The Rand has weakened against the US Dollar due to concerns about deteriorating budget and trade deficits. The market will be keeping an eye on today’s debt sale and latest producer inflation data.

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