GBP/USD Cautious After Thursday’s 2-Year Lows

  • GBPUSD
    (${instrument.percentChange}%)

Discouraging Powell

During last week's press conference, after the Fed had delivered its second straight and largest rate hike in 22 years, Mr Powell had talked of "soft or softish landing" [1]. This comment did not inspire much confidence in the bank's ability to avoid a recession and keep the labor market strong, as it tries to bring inflation down to 2%.

Chair Powell returned on the topic yesterday, speaking on Marketplace and once again, his commentary was less than reassuring, since he essentially did not guarantee a soft landing. He said that such an outcome "may actually depend on factors that we don't control", while adding that bringing inflation down would include "some pain". [2]

UK Economy Jitters

Last week the pair had recorded its worst day in more than two years, after the Bank of England's doom and gloom. The central bank had risen rates by 25 basis, but what stood out was its broad pessimism, as it forecast inflation to peak to around 10% and the economy to contract during the last quarter of the year. [3]

Yesterday's data showed the first cracks, as Q1 GDP grew 0.8% quarter-over-quarter, from 1.3% prior, while March GDP contracted by 0.1% month-over-month. High inflation and a slowdown in economic activity, make the BoE's job very difficult, because they pull in different dictions.

GBP/USD Analysis

The pair fund support during the Asia-Pacific session, probably helped by Mr Powell's comment, as markets tried to shake-off recent risk aversion. As long as it can stay in positive territory it may get a chance to push towards the EMA100 and the descending trendline from this month's highs (1.2280 -1.2310), but it will need a strong catalyst to surpass both and look towards 1.2401.

Despite current effort to rebound, the British pound lacks conviction and bias remains firmly on the downside below the EMA100. As such, there is increased risk for fresh two-year lows (1.2163) that could open the door 1.2079-69 and beyond.

Nikos Tzabouras

Senior Market Specialist

Nikos Tzabouras is a graduate of the Department of International & European Economic Studies at the Athens University of Economics and Business. He has a long time presence at FXCM, as he joined the company in 2011. He has served from multiple positions, but specializes in financial market analysis and commentary.

With his educational background in international relations, he emphasizes not only on Technical Analysis but also in Fundamental Analysis and Geopolitics – which have been having increasing impact on financial markets. He has longtime experience in market analysis and as a host of educational trading courses via online and in-person sessions and conferences.

References

1

Retrieved 13 May 2022 https://www.youtube.com/watch

2

Retrieved 13 May 2022 https://www.marketplace.org/2022/05/12/fed-chair-jerome-powell-controlling-inflation-will-include-some-pain/

3

Retrieved 24 May 2022 https://www.bankofengland.co.uk/monetary-policy-report/2022/may-2022

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