Final services PMI for the eurozone beat expectations, coming in at 51.2 versus the expected 50.9. Individually it was Italy and France who disappointed with the latter contracting at a faster rate than expected, hitting a five-month low of 48. Retail sales also failed to give cheer, declining 0.2% on the month against the expectation that a rise would occur.
The trading range for the past few days has been a mere 100 pips, with the general expectation that the European Central Bank rate decision tomorrow (which is not expected to change) and the non-farm payrolls due out on Friday will form the basis of a catalyst that will see this pair find an overall direction. Any moves through 1.36 on a daily closing basis would tend to put the bias in favour of a stronger euro, while a pull back through 1.3550 could see it weaken.
Later this afternoon the US ADP employment numbers will be closely watched – despite the fact that last month’s number gave no real indication about non-farm payrolls. Anything higher than 172,000 jobs could give the dollar a degree of strength as it may elevate the outlier view that the Federal Reserve will taper asset purchasing this month.
New home sales and ISM non-manufacturing PMI are also due for release later today. Should the data prove sturdy, it will be likely to underpin the dollar bull view.