After a very quiet day for fundamental news yesterday, today is a little busier with several scheduled releases, both in Europe and the US, but none are considered ‘red flag’ events, and will therefore have a relatively low impact on the euro to dollar pair today. The first release this morning on the economic calendar were the German Trade Balance figures which came in at 9.0B against a forecast of 9.4B, indicating that exports fell more than expected during April, once again suggesting that Europe’s largest economy is still deep in recession. This was followed by the equivalent data in France, which came out at -3.8B against a forecast of -4.4B, showing a narrowing trade deficit as imports fell faster than exports, with sales of Airbus rising. The bad news for the German economy continued with the release of the Industrial Production month on month data, which came in worse than expected at -1.9%, when the forecast had been a flat 0%, and following last months positive figure of 0.3%, with the euro falling as a result of all the poor German news.

The focus for this afternoon is in the US, on two minor pieces of fundamental data, namely the IBD economic optimism report, and Wholesale inventories, neither of which are expected to have any significant impact for the US dollar. The first is a sentiment index based on a survey of approximately 1000 US consumers who are asked to rate a variety of economic factors, which are then combined into a single index – above 50 indicates optimism, and below pessimism – the forecast is for 51 against a previous of 48.6, suggesting that the mood may be changing!  The second news item is Wholesale inventories which measures the change in the value of stocks held in inventory and is used to indicate if companies are more likely or less likely to place orders, which in turn indicates an economy in expansion or contraction. The forecast is for -1.1% against a previous of -1.6%.

Finally, we have a statement by Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner,who is due to testify on his department’s budget before the Senate Appropriations Committee, in Washington DC.

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