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Traders’ indecisive ahead of the FED

15.03 AEST, Wednesday 22 May 2013

Traders’ indecisive ahead of the FED

By Tim Waterer (Senior Trader, CMC Markets)

The Australian market traded indecisively today ahead of some key offshore events, namely the testimony of Bernanke before Congress as well as the release of the Fed minutes. The ASX200 started well before reversing course with traders seemingly a little unsure as to where to be positioned as we await the latest clues from the FOMC on the future of asset purchases.

Materials stocks performed quite well on the local market while the major banks were on the decline, however overall there was a directionless feel about the market today. Perhaps also contributing to the market pullback from the earlier highs was the release of the surprisingly weak consumer sentiment data. This release definitely impact the AUDUSD rate today with the Aussie losing around one third of a cent against the greenback on the soft sentiment reading.

Overall it was a mixed performance by markets across Asia today, The Nikkei soared again after the BOJ meeting however elsewhere other indices were rather more reserved in anticipation of an update on the state of play by Bernanke. I would expect that the Fed Chairman will be balanced in his testimony given that the US economic recovery is a constantly evolving landscape, and as such the flexible approach to the future path of QE will likely be maintained by Bernanke.

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