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USD March retail sales will be today’s driver

USD: Markets are looking for a strong March US retail sales number today as the stimulus checks have started to come through. However, following the muted USD reaction to the March inflation numbers earlier in the week, it seems that the positive US inflation and growth stories are now largely priced into USD. Hence, the positive impact on USD may be limited and with UST yields well behaved, the solid US data may support G10 pro-cyclical FX today.

CAD: March existing home sales are due and board‐level data released this week suggests that March was another very strong month for the national housing market. In response to an overheating housing market, OSFI has proposed raising the minimum stress rate for uninsured mortgages to 5.25% (46bp of tightening). Based on its impact in 2018/19, we think it should help to slow the market. A daily close below 1.2502 would add to bearish momentum in USD/CAD, exposing 1.2462 thereafter. Resistance is located at 1.2527 and 1.2561.

EUR: EUR/USD is close to the 1.20 psychological level and further evidence of USD losing steam today (should USD fail to benefit from the strong retail sales today) is likely to push EUR/USD higher, particularly after positioning adjustment observed so far this year. The EUR/USD still remains undervalued by almost 2%, based on most short term financial fair value models.

GBP: After consistent outperformance in Q1, GBP is having a rough start to Q2, so far racking up losses against all other G10 currencies. With the negative policy rate risk premium fully priced out, the hurdle for news driving further gains is much higher and news flow has become more ambiguous, with the vaccination dynamic now being a clear trend to catch up in the US and Europe.

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