U.S Growth slows more than expected; Bitcoin recovers after early weakness


USD GDP Q/Q falls to 2.6% for Q4 2017 but USD moves off the lows
CAD falls back as inflation drops more than expected
Bitcoin recaptures 11,000 after early slump
Oil set to end the week near its highs; Aramco IPO in focus

US dollar bulls were looking to this afternoon’s economic data to offer them a reprieve given the recent declines, but a larger than expected drop in growth has kept the buck under pressure and even though it has moved off its lows in the afternoon, it remains a bad week for longs. The Advanced (first of three) US GDP for Q4 came in at +2.6% against a consensus forecast of +3.0% and a prior reading of +3.2%.

Whilst the majority of the attention was on the US data, some figures from Canada caused a fairly wild ride in the Canadian dollar which swung both higher and lower following the latest CPI release. A larger than expected drop in this reading has weighed on the Loonie on the whole and the CADJPY pair is ending the week at a potentially key level. 

Bitcoin dropped lower once more this morning as news that the UK would increase their scrutiny of the cryptocurrency as well as reports of a largescale fraud saw price fall lower by more than 5%. As the day wore on, the market recovered somewhat and on the European close was trading back above the 11,000 handle once more.

It’s been a pretty choppy week for oil prices but they are looking to end it on a good note with the markets trading near their highest level. The incredible rally of around 60% in the past 7 months has been largely due to production cuts from both OPEC and non-OPEC (Russia) members. Saudi Arabia in particular could be sent to have a vested interest in a higher price for crude with the IPO of Saudi Aramco looming large.

Gold is set for its highest weekly close in 18 months with price making a substantial break higher in the past few days. The market has since pulled back from its highest levels but it remains firmly higher on the week and it could now be seen to be a good time to look at the technicals of the market and assess what could happen going forward.