USD - United States Dollar
The US Dollar Index climbed nearly 1.5% after the chairman of the Federal Reserve said that he would not raise interest rates. At the Wall Street Journal Jobs Summit, Chair Jerome Powell said that he expected a short-term rise in inflation and that rates would stay near zero. His comments didn’t ease Wall Street’s concern about rising bond yields and inflation, triggering a wild session. As investors left equity markets, they pushed up demand for the US dollar.
Meanwhile this morning, Non-Farm Employment crushed expectations. US employers created 379,000 new jobs and most economists expected only 197,000. As many hoped, its causing expectations that the economy will recover from the pandemic as vaccination programs progress. This positive news could have unexpected consequences. If the economy can be jump started, the Fed could raise rates faster than expected, and as that underpins equity markets, then a drop in stock prices may occur. And as equities fall, the dollar rises.
EURUSD fell sharply in the past 24 hours with it making a decisive break below 1.20 on the back of Powell's comments. Only just last week it reached 1.2250. However, a rapid repositioning from investors considering rising bond yields and rising coronavirus cases in some parts of the EU have seen the single currency sold off in dramatic fashion.
It was a mixed bag for GBP to end the week. Demand for USD pushed GBPUSD below 1.39 from a high of around 1.40 briefly seen yesterday afternoon. Events from across the Atlantic have been the main catalyst for the move after comments from Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell prompted another round of dollar buying. Despite GBPUSD being lower this morning, the outlook for GBP remains positive considering the rising number of coronavirus vaccinations paired with a falling number of cases. The UK should hopefully see a strong economic rebound from April onwards.
The Australian dollar fell sharply overnight giving up 100 points and marking intraday lows at 0.7710. Having tracked sideways for much of the domestic session, the AUD appeared to be gaining some upward momentum, pushing through 0.78 to touch 0.7813 through the early stages of the European session. It then bounced between 0.7780 and 0.7810 through much of the evening before a steep and sharp correction. The AUD tumbled steeply toward 0.77 US cents as bond market volatility again drove a push toward haven assets and treasury yields.EUR/USD:
1.190 - 1.204 ▲GBP/USD:
1.379 - 1.401 ▲AUD/USD:
0.762 - 0.781 ▲USD/CAD:
1.257 - 1.272 ▲