Friday, 31 May 2013

Excel Markets - A Completely Different Type of Broker

Excel Markets ECN Forex Broker - Ultra-Low Spreads and Zero-Deposit Fees Excel Markets is an ultra-low spread broker. Average .37 pip spread + .5 pip commission = .87 pip cost round turn, and, since this is only an average it can be much lower during liquid market hours like US and London hours.

In line with our commitment to transparency here at Excel Markets, the commission rate of $5, or $2.5 per side (entry, edit) is the same across all currency pairs.
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Thursday, 30 May 2013

Does Frau Merkel and Friends Have a New Economic Plan?

Ralph Shell, Excel Analyst

For months countries in the Southern Euro Zone have been complaining about the German recovery plan.  Austerity, combined with reforms to make the public sector more efficient has been a failure where ever tried.  Perhaps there will ultimately be a competitive revival, but the price is very high. 

Unemployment in the eurozone is at record highs, with youth unemployment as high as 60%.  This is a tragedy.  When given a chance at the ballot box, voters throw the incumbents out.  In the last vote in Italy, not only did they elect new representatives, but over 55% of the votes went to those that want out of the euro.

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Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Take What The Market Gives You

Ralph Shell, Excel Analyst

Take What the Market Gives You - Excel Markets ECN Forex Broker After a listless trade Monday, with the British and US markets on holiday, the forex markets came back to life yesterday.  Once again, the Japanese market set the tone.  PM Abe claimed there were additional tools at the disposal of the BOJ that can be used to kick the deflation habit; this was enough install some confidence in the Nikkei 225 which rallied 1.2%.
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Tuesday, 28 May 2013

USD Buying Surges to Record High

CFTC Commitments of Traders (COT) Report, Excel Markets ECN Forex Broker There has been a surge in selling other major currencies.  As a consequence with the flip side of these trades being a long USD, the futures long in the USD has climbed to a recent record high.  That total, 520,358 total contracts, is up from about 396K last week.  The previous record high was 430K in June of 2012.

New selling by the specs was quite notable in the euro and the pound.  The biggest increase in short positions was in the euro.  Traders had been short the yen by 130.8K contracts, added to the net short, and took that position up to 135.2K.

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Saturday, 25 May 2013

The Week in Forex - What Next?

Ralph Shell, Excel Analyst

The euro has staged a minor rally this week versus the USD.  The market is trapped, momentarily, within the 1.28/30 area.  There was a period of euro strength when the prepared text of Bernanke's speech said the current level of QE would continue until there was solid evidence of recovery.  During the press conference, he seemed to indicate that tapering off had been discussed and this caused a market reversal.

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Thursday, 23 May 2013

Is the Bear Move in the Yen Coming to an End?

Ralph Shell, Excel Analyst

It looks like the Fed's debate about tapering has a long tail.  Just mention the word 'taper' and it seems some asset class is going to contract.  Last night it was the Japanese Nikkei 225 that sold off over 7%; this gave the equity bears some momentum.  European markets were down 2 to 3%, and now US equities are trading lower by .40 to .93%.

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Wednesday, 22 May 2013

Bernanke Comments Boost the USD - And Hurt the Euro

Ralph Shell, Excel Analyst

The forex markets are jittery today as Fed Chairman Bernanke confesses to what he might or might not do.  Some, who apparently had access to the prepared text of his testimony, reported there would be no tapering off of the current money rate of money addition of $85B per month.

Premature tightening risks the slowing or end of the current recovery, it was reported. Naturally this weakened the USD, as traders felt the increase in the money supply was bearish the USD. Then, in his live testimony, Bernanke hinted at a possible tapering in the amount of the monthly QE.  Adding to the confusion was NY Fed President William Dudley who claimed the Fed needed three or four months to measure the fiscal drag caused by reduced federal spending.

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Identify the Market and Trade Accordingly

Ralph Shell, Excel Analyst

What do we mean when we request you 'identify the market'?  Well, some markets seem to aimlessly meander like a river flowing over flat land, as it's waters move out to sea.  Other markets streak, either up or down - there is no question which way they are headed.  The only issue is how do we get aboard and ride the trend, weather it be up or down.

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Monday, 20 May 2013

Speculators Continue Buying the USD

CFTC Commitments of Traders (COT) Report - What Is It?CFTC Commitments of Traders (COT) Report 14 May, published 17 May 2013 - Technical Analysis.  There was across-the-board buying in the USD. The total net USD position increased from 316.7K to 395.9K at the end of this period. This is the largest USD position since June of 2012.

The biggest USD long is in the yen, where the spec short has grown to 130.8 The second largest short position is in the pound. Despite the open interest being much larger in the euro, the short position in the pound is more than 17K higher. If the UK economic numbers continue marginally better we think the euro would lose to the pound.

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Friday, 17 May 2013

Are We Close to Selling the USD?

Ralph Shell, Excel Analyst

It has been a great week for the USD as it gained against all the majors.  The New Zealand Dollar was the last market where the futures traders were long.  Early in the week, the kiwi bought .8316 cents per USD, but by the end of the week it was down under the 81 handle.  Should the weekly chart close around this level, it looks like there will be some more to the downside. 

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Thursday, 16 May 2013

How to Get with a Streaking Market

Ralph Shell, Excel Analyst

There is nothing more discouraging to a trader than to correctly analyze a market, and then watch it streak away without you.  Markets often have false starts, and then settle back to the congestion area where they started.  Buying the break out with an appropriate money market stop often results in a series of losses.

Sound familiar?

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Wednesday, 15 May 2013

Is Cheaper Crude Weakening the Canadian Dollar?

Ralph Shell, Excel Analyst

Is Cheaper Crude Weakening the Canadian Dollar? For the fifth day in a row, WTI (West Texas Intermediate) crude traded lower - under 93 for the June contract.  Granted, there is much more to the Canadian economy than energy, but it is the biggest source of export revenue.  The Alberta oil sands are estimated to be the third largest reserve of crude in the world.  Current production - around two million barrels a day - has been projected to go to 3.6 million barrels in ten years.  That number might be optimistic.

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Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Statement: Network and Redundancy Systems Failure and Resolution

Official Statement from Excel Markets to Live Account Holders

Tuesday, 14 May 2013. An inexcusable outage that we take full responsibility for occurred today for up to 2 hours, along with outages at just over 60 other brokers using the same very popular and very trusted professional service provider.  If your trading on a live account was affected by this outage we ask that you contact us at support@excelmarkets.com with an explanation of the issue you experienced.  Besides correcting any issues and issuing full refunds where due, we have already deposited a free $200 (or equivalent in base currency) to every single trader that had an open trade during the time regardless of whether the trade was affected by the outage or not as a way of saying we are very sorry.  This affects live accounts only.

It is with great embarrassment and disappointment that we apologize for what occurred today and it is our vow to make it an absolute priority to completely mitigate any potential downtime of this magnitude in the future.  The highest level of management in the organization will be paying close attention to this serious matter, if you should have any feedback or questions or anything else we also ask that you contact us. A deeper explanation of the situation may be found below.

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How Does Italy Feel About German Exceptionalism?

Ralph Shell, Excel Analyst

Last weekend I ran into an interesting article in The Economist entitled Mend the Money Machine.  The article refers to the shortage of European bank funds to finance small and medium sized business in Southern Europe;  this magazine is a bit haughty, but this article seems to present a valid reason why the Eurozone is one big unhappy family.

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Speculators Increase USD Longs

CFTC Commitments of Traders (COT) Report - What Is It?CFTC Commitments of Traders (COT) Report 07 May, published 10 May 2013 - Technical Analysis.  In the most recent COT reporting period, the specs have increased their net USD spec long position from 292.3K to 316.7K.  Spec short positions were increased in the pound, euro, and yen.  The biggest increase of short sellers was in the pound, and unusual because the economic fundamentals in the UK are better than those in Europe.

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Saturday, 11 May 2013

Week Ends With Some Decisive Forex Moves

Ralph Shell, Excel Analyst

Thursday 09 May 2013, we were lamenting the lack of decisive moves, especially in the euro and the yen.  What a difference a day makes. 

In the euro, we did note that trade was becoming congested with triangular trendlines converging.  Usually, that formation can result in a continuing movement once the trendline has been broken.  Such was the case, and the bears quickly took the pair to 1.30 where we had expected some support.  A close decisively under the 1.30 handle means that number will be the new resistance.

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Friday, 10 May 2013

Include Rebates in Trading Performance Stats: New Feature Added to ForexRazor.com

When you connect your MT4 trading account to the ForexRazor stats system you can view in-depth statistics for your account, as well as optionally share with your friends or everyone if you wish to share. 

In the quest for maintaining status as the most accurate system available of it's kind, ForexRazor stats now will auto-search for rebates earned on your account and include those earnings in your account statistics.  Rebates can make a big difference in your trading performance, depending on which broker you use and how large the rebates are, however regardless of the size of the rebate your bottom line is always better if you are earning cash rebates vs. not earning cash rebates at the same broker. 

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Range Bound Trade Confusing to Traders of the Yen and the Euro

Ralph Shell, Excel Analyst

Excel Markets ECN Forex Broker Since the EURUSD (FXE, UUP) made a spike low of about 1.2850 in early April, the euro has forged a steady recovery.  It has not been dramatic, but the bears have paid a price.  The short side of this pair has been popular with specs.  In the futures market, the COT report showed the specs to be short 82,289 contracts on April 2nd.  At that time, the spec short was large, though not as big as short positions in the yen and the pound.

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Thursday, 9 May 2013

Not Every Trade Makes Money

Ralph Shell, Excel Analyst

Forex Razor User Reviews Contest How true it is, not every trade does make money.  Traders, after analysis of various inputs, reach a conclusion, and enter the trade.  The analysis can include a myriad of inputs.  Initially, most traders tend to rely on technical analysis, probably because it is easier to get a rudimentary grasp on the markets behavior.  Since price action, as portrayed in a charts, is the summation of many different inputs, this is a logical starting point.

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Tuesday, 7 May 2013

CFTC COT Report 30 April 2013 - Specs Liquidate USD Longs

Ralph Shell, Excel Analyst

CFTC Commitments of Traders (COT) Report 30 April, published 03 May 2013 - Technical Analysis.  There was near-unanimous liquidation by selling in the USD longs in all the contracts we review except the SF, and the New Zealand USD.  Selling of the USD by those previously short in the pound and the euro were the most active.  Specs, however, have more selling of the USD before they can become long the two European currencies.

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Saturday, 4 May 2013

Currency Markets Digest the Non Farm Payroll Report

Ralph Shell, Excel Analyst

Non Farm Payroll (NFP) Report - Excel Markets AnalysisOnce again the US Labor Department delivers a surprise in the most recent NFP report.  Following last month's low number, the experts all reduced their guesses for the new report and, of course, the number at 165K new hires exceeds all expectations.  The unemployment rate slipped to 7.5%, and the NFP from last month was revised upwards from 88K to 138K.  Perhaps these numbers confirm the reductions in the first time unemployment claims, which suggested the soft US economic data was not right.

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Friday, 3 May 2013

Forex Markets Required to Move with Agility

Ralph Shell, Excel Analyst

Forex Razor Industry Review Contest, May 2013There has been a steady stream of meaningful reports that has resulted in a lively trading session yesterday (02 May).  We started the day with seven European PMI's.  Although the numbers from Germany, Italy and a few other countries were moderately positive, there was nothing exciting in the PMI's.

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Wednesday, 1 May 2013

Is It Time For The USD To Lose To The Yen?

Ralph Shell, Excel Analyst

Selling the yen has been a big winner this year. 

Forex Razor Industry Review Contest, May 2013Actually, the move commenced in October when traders began to recognize the new Prime Minister might be Abe, a proponent of aggressive monetary expansion.  For years the Japanese had been trapped in a deflationary spiral and no economic growth.  Abe's cure for the moribund economy was straight from the Keynes text book.  Having the Bank of Japan to increase their balance sheet, buying Japanese Government bonds, thereby increasing the money supply would be the answer.

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Will the USD Losses to the Euro and the Pound Continue?

Ralph Shell, Excel Analyst

Forex Razor Industry Review Contest, May 2013The trade on the final day of the month should always be judged with suspicion.  For those who have an accounting period coinciding with the end of the month, the trade today can be especially important.  Open positions will be 'marked-to-market' and trading performance will determine the remuneration traders and fund managers receive.

It is always interesting to watch which markets will enjoy exceptional strength or weakness on the close.

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