Euro vs AUD (FX:EURAUD)
1 Year : From Nov 2018 to Nov 2019
The Japanese yen firmed against its major counterparts in the Asian session on Friday, as disappointing trade data from China and European Central Bank's downgrade of economic growth forecasts triggered worries about a global economic slowdown.
The ECB on Thursday slashed its economic growth forecast, citing lingering, mainly external uncertainties.
The eurozone growth outlook for this year was cut to 1.1 percent from 1.7 percent, while the outlook for next year was trimmed to 1.6 percent from 1.7 percent.
Data from General Administration of Customs showed that China recorded a trade surplus of $4.12 billion in February, much weaker than the $26.2 billion surplus expected by economists.
Exports fell 20.7 percent from a year earlier, while imports dropped 5.2 percent.
Investors are also cautious as they look ahead to the release of the U.S. Labor Department's closely-watched monthly jobs report for February later in the day.
On the economic front, data from the Cabinet Office showed that Japan's gross domestic product gained a seasonally adjusted 0.5 percent on quarter in the fourth quarter of 2018. That beat expectations for an increase of 0.4 percent following the 0.3 percent gain in the previous reading.
The Ministry of Finance said that Japan posted a current account surplus of 600.4 billion yen in January, up 1.4 percent from a year earlier. That beat expectations for a surplus of 161.0 billion yen and was up from 452.8 billion yen in December.
The trade balance showed a deficit of 964.8 billion yen, which also topped forecasts for a deficit of 1,152.4 billion yen following the 216.2 billion yen surplus in the previous month. Exports were down 6.7 percent on year in January, while imports eased an annual 1.7 percent.
The Bank of Japan said that overall bank lending in Japan was up 2.3 percent on year in February, coming in at 533.7 trillion yen. That was down from 2.4 percent in January. Excluding trusts, bank lending was up 2.4 percent on year to 464.4 trillion yen - unchanged from the previous month.
The yen strengthened to a 2-week high of 75.02 against the kiwi, more than 3-week high of 77.77 against the aussie and a 4-week high of 82.44 against the loonie, from its early lows of 75.53, 78.42 and 83.04, respectively. The yen is seen finding resistance around 74.00 against the kiwi, 76.00 against the aussie and 81.00 against the loonie.
The yen reversed from its early lows of 111.65 against the greenback and 125.03 against the euro, climbing to an 8-day high of 110.95 and a 3-week high of 124.31, respectively. If the yen rises further, 108.00 and 122.00 are likely seen as its next resistance levels against the greenback and the euro, respectively.
The Japanese currency firmed to an 11-day high of 145.19 against the pound and more than a 2-week high of 109.89 against the franc, off its previous lows of 146.18 and 110.44, respectively. The next key resistance levels for the yen are seen around 143.00 against the pound and 107.00 against the franc.
The Australian dollar weakened against its key counterparts in the wake of falling Asian shares.
Reversing from its early highs of 0.9452 against the loonie and 1.0392 against the kiwi, the aussie weakened to 2-day lows of 0.9426 and 1.0360, respectively. On the downside, 0.93 and 1.02 are possibly seen as its next support levels against the loonie and the kiwi, respectively.
The aussie weakened to a 2-month low of 0.7003 against the greenback, following an advance to 0.7028 at 9:30 pm ET. The aussie is likely to challenge support around the 0.69 area.
The aussie edged down to 1.5996 against the euro, from an 8-day high of 1.5931 seen at 9:30 pm ET. The next possible support for the aussie is seen around the 1.61 mark.
Looking ahead, at 8:15 am ET, Canada housing starts for February are due.
In the New York session, U.S. housing starts and building permits for January, as well as U.S. and Canadian jobs data for February are slated for release.