Daily Currency Update

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Coronavirus dominates headlines and hampers risk appetite

AUD - Australian Dollar

The Australian dollar fell through trade on Monday as limited liquidity over the Australia Day and Chinese New Year holidays amplified risk moves and forced a move below 0.68. Australia’s exposure to the Chinese economy and its impact on domestic tourism has sparked fears the spread of the coronavirus will undo recent optimism around the US/China trade deal and dampen demand for Australian raw materials. The AUD touched its lowest level since December 2nd at 0.6752 as commodity prices plunged lower. Both copper and crude oil both lost 3% through trade on Monday highlighting concerns around Australia’s exposure to China, exacerbating recent underperformance.

With little headline data on hand Tuesday to drive domestic direction attentions this week remain squarely focused on developments of the coronavirus. With volatility low news of a cure could help bolster an AUD recovery and shift back above 0.68 and 0.6850 ahead of tomorrow’s all important CPI inflation report.

Key Movers

The US dollar, Japanese Yen and Swiss Franc all rose through trade on Monday as mounting fears the coronavirus will morph into a global health emergency spooked markets and pushed investors toward safe haven assets. Concerns health authorities have not reacted fast enough to contain the spread of the deadly respiratory virus have forced markets to the sidelines and seen the Chinese yuan come under heightened selling pressure. The CNY fell to its lowest level this year and its weakest level since December 30 touching 6.99 having lost almost 1%. Until we see a shift in headlines and some optimism surrounding a cure we expect risk appetite to remain muted and safe haven assets will continue to benefit.

The Great British pound shifted lower through trade on Monday as investors position themselves ahead of this week’s Bank of England’s policy meeting. A largely positive Services and Manufacturers PMI print on Friday helped quell calls for a rate cut. Having touched fortnight highs at 1.3180 sterling shifted to 1.3056 as investors prepare for Wednesday’s policy decision with just over 50% of analysts pricing in a rate cut.

Expected Ranges

AUD/USD: 0.6730 - 0.6830 ▼

AUD/EUR: 0.6080 - 0.6180 ▼

GBP/AUD: 1.9175 - 1.9480 ▲

AUD/NZD: 1.0280 - 1.0380 ▼

AUD/CAD: 0.8860 - 0.8970 ▼