RBA rate decision preview, key levels highlighted

FX_IDC:AUDUSD   Australian Dollar / U.S. Dollar
The RBA rate decision tomorrow at 0330GMT has unanimous expectations for rates to remain unchanged at record low 1.50% ( ASX 30-Day Interbank Cash Rate Futures pricing in a 95% chance of a hold). Data has been weak since the last meeting with Unemployment Rate rising for both December and January and is now at the highest since June 2016, while we also saw a miss on expectations for all GDP and CPI figures. Despite this, the RBA is expected to use alternative methods to drive the economy, as soaring Building Approvals and rising house prices narrow the scope a near-term rate cut (low rates push up house prices), while surprisingly Goldman Sachs see the next RBA rate move to be a hike amid global economic recovery and increasing incomes. Pressure on the central bank is building as GDP on a Q/Q basis posted a contraction for the first time since Q1 of 2011 and retail sales hit a 4-month low in December. Additional easing is still a possibility according to JPMorgan who stated RBA could ease further this year if there is turbulence in the strength of the economy, while Credit Suisse stated RBA could have to cut rates as many as 3 more times. Since markets are expecting no rate move, focus will be on the statement as neutral or hawkish comments could dampen hopes of future easing and boost AUD


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