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Short-Term Reaction Lower but Sentiment is Nervous

The USD/JPY has traded lower upon the U.S. Federal Reserve’s monetary policy rhetoric, but behavioral sentiment appears nervous.

The USD/JPY is trading slightly below the 128.600 level as of this writing. Yesterday produced a volatile choppy trading session which saw the USD/JPY above 130.000 momentarily and then displays choppy downward price action in the midst of the U.S Federal Reserve’s interest rate decision and pronouncements. As the USD/JPY trades within its lower price range this morning, speculators likely remain nervous as they try to interpret short-term sentiment.


The yen is a popular asset during turbulent times.

The U.S Federal Reserve as anticipated increased its interest rate by 0.25%, but unexpectedly too – made it clear it will likely raise rates by another quarter of a point next month. While this might be seen as an aggressive monetary policy stance, some financial institutions may not have this perception. As the USD/JPY traded lower early this morning, falling below 128.200 briefly some traders may have been surprised by the amount of bearish momentum in the USD/JPY, before the reversals higher.

USD/JPY Short-Term Nervousness will likely Clash with Mid-Term Expectations

While the USD/JPY has essentially traded lower it has not penetrated the lows seen in the middle of January. From that technical vantage point it can be said the USD/JPY has merely maintained its lower value range, but has not been overly excited and remains relatively calm. The ability to stay within sight of the lowest realms of the USD/JPY, but not challenge them is intriguing because it sets the tone for what is likely to be a nervous short-term speculative battle as it clashes with mid-term outlooks among financial institutions.

The Federal Reserve as Always is Under Scrutiny and the USD/JPY is Reacting

  • While the U.S. Fed said it will raise interest rates next month and remains worried about deflationary trends slowing, some financial houses may be betting against the outlook of the U.S. central bank.
  • Tomorrow job numbers are going to come from the U.S., it is likely the Fed knows what will be reported tomorrow, but the fact that many U.S. companies are delivering massive layoffs for workers probably has financial houses nervous.
  • If U.S. employment continues to announce more workers will be sent home, this could have a negative effect on the U.S. economy, and thus continue to create weaker consumer spending as the American public gets nervous. The Fed may not be taking this into account fully.

The near term is likely to be choppy for USD/JPY traders. Technical speculators may have the short-term advantage as support and resistance levels are tested. The 128.200 to 128.900 realms may prove to be a significant short-term battleground. Traders should aim for narrow take-profit targets and use plenty of risk management over the next two days of price action as sentiment is fought over.

USD/JPY Short-Term Outlook:

Current Resistance: 128.955

Current Support: 128.480

High Target: 129.470

Low Target: 128.050


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