- CE currencies shrug off both ECB meeting and stronger dollar
- Czech rates move higher thanks to higher CPI and GDP revisions
The Czech crown gained on a positive revision of GDP (0.9% q/q) and higher inflation reading (2.00% y/y). The preannouncement of July hike by ECB did not really hurt the regional currencies yesterday.
Inflation was pushed up mainly by food and oil prices and seasonal increase in prices for recreation. Although the core remains more or less stable, we expect further moderate increase in headline (to 2.3% y/y). That is why we continue to believe in CNB interest rate hike in August. In this respect, it is worth to note that Czech short rates decoupled from their Euro PEERS yesterday and they moved higher as both growth and CPI moved above CNB’s estimates.
From a technical point of view the picture on the Czech currency remains positive. After breaking below 55-day and 200-day moving averages, the pair is set to test April’s lows at 24.04 EUR/CZK.
The Hungarian forint appreciated to this month’s high of 264.10 against the euro yesterday afternoon on the back of better equity market sentiment. This means that the currency was able to break through the key 265.00 level, which came under pressure at the end of last week. It seems that the lack of a major trend on core markets helped high-yielders as investors are seeking high-yielding non-corporate assets to secure returns and the forint’s 6% base rate is still relatively high among other emerging markets.
The Polish zloty underperformed its Central European peers on Thursday. Still, it posted some gains and the pair settled below both 50 days and 200 days moving averages (both are seen at 3.95 EUR/PLN).
One day after the rate hike, money markets signal one more hike this year. We believe in a final move during autumn (probably September) bringing the base rate to 4.75%. The Polish economy should confirm strong growth in core investments in the year ahead of European football championship, which should be reflected in improving employment as well. Beside that, inflation expectations of Polish households may remain at elevated levels above 4% for a while and putting it together with better employment picture it should convince the Polish central bankers to act once more, even in the case of a weakening of foreign demand.