- The AUD/USD is set to finish the week with gains, up 1.50%.
- US Nonfarm payrolls reports crushed expectations, giving a green light for a Fed hike.
- Fed’s Evans: He said that is essential to hike in each meeting.
- AUD/USD Technical Outlook: Upward biased, as long as it remains above the 200-DMA.
The AUD/USD rallies for the third straight day, eyeing to close in the green the week, though it faced strong resistance around 0.7369, as the US Department of Labor reported that the US economy added more jobs than expected, amid a risk-off mood due to increasing tensions between Ukraine and Russia conflict. At press time, the AUD/USD is trading at 0.7348.
US Labor market improves and cements a 25 bps rate hike by the Fed
The US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) unveiled the Nonfarm Payrolls report for February. The figures smashed expectations rose by 678K, higher than the 400K estimated by market analysts. Further, the Unemployment Rate fell, and average hourly earnings were little changed from the prior month.
February’s report would be the last before the Fed March 15-16 meeting. The improvement in the labor market gives the green light to the Fed’s first rate hike since December 2018. In fact, the odds of a 25 bps increase, as reported by money market futures, are 95%, though US inflation figures on March 10 would give additional clues about the size of the rate hike.
After the US NFP report, Chicago Fed President Charles Evans crossed the wires on a CNBC interview. Evans said that job numbers have been “quite good” for some time and mentioned a “tremendous amount” of uncertainty regarding the Russia-Ukraine conflict. Furthermore, he added that it would “be more than essential” hike rates 25 bps at each meeting.
During the Asian session, a fire was reported at Ukraine’s Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant, which is the largest amid an attack by Russian troops. Initially, the Ukraine Foreign Minister Kuleba confirmed the news and warned that an explosion would be ten times larger than Chernobyl. Late, the Ukraine emergency state service reported that the fire broke outside the perimeter and emphasized that safety of the nuclear power plant was now secured.
Since then, the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant has been seized by Russian military forces, according to the regional authority.
AUD/USD Price Forecast: Technical outlook
The AUD/USD is bullish biased, though it witnessed a retracement to the 200-DMA, which was used to open new upward bets, with the AUD/USD jumping to the 0.7340 area. The AUD/USD first resistance would be November 16 high at 0.7368. Breach of the latter would expose the 0.7400 mark, followed by September 3 day high at 0.7478 and then 0.7500.