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Forex Flash: US Retail Sales to be modest due to lower spending on gasoline – TD Securities

TD Securities analysts expect consumer spending momentum to moderate in January with total retail sales rising at a very meagre 0.1% M/M pace, after last year's decent activity. Vehicle sales are likely to remain relatively unchanged on the month, and sales excluding autos should rise at an equally modest 0.1% M/M pace. “The weakness on the headline number should be driven mostly by the decline in spending on gasoline, and core spending activity (which excludes spending on autos, gas and building material, and is a useful gauge on the tone of real spending) should post a more respectable 0.4% M/M gain, adding to the positive momentum in the past few months”, wrote analyst Alvin Pontoh.

European markets cheer US-EU bilateral trade deal negotiations

The German DAX 30 (+0.46%), the French CAC 40 (+0.13%), the Italian FTSE MIB (+0.25%) and the Spanish IBEX 35 (+0.75%) are edging higher on Wednesday in reaction to yesterday's State of the Union speech by US President Obama. He proposed lifting the minimum wage from $7.25/hr to $9, announce a new US-EU bilateral trade deal, and called for Congress to deal with the sequester that will take effect on March 1.
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Gold prices trading at $1647.04

Gold prices touched the awaited resistance level at 1653.00 earlier today, though the currently pricing action is attempting to move lower again at the time of writing. “By touching this level the metal activated our previous bearish scenario, which will be likely so long as 1653.00 is limiting a further incline. What is particularly concerning is the price ability to retreat back and close above 1647.00 support level yesterday, forming a hammer candlestick pattern.” warns the Technical Analyst Team at ICN.com
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