Currencies have mostly been trading with stability amid a benign backdrop of buoyant stock markets and softer yields as markets anticipate dovish guidance from the Fed and tomorrow’s conclusion of the FOMC meeting, which begins later today. This is despite the $1.9 tln fiscal stimulus which is being implemented on top of a better than anticipated economic rebound, though the Fed, looking beyond the upcoming burst of inflation caused by base effects on the year-on-year price comparison, will point to spare capacity in the labour market.
One side-theme of note today has been pound weakness, with Cable pushing nearly 0.5% lower in pegging a one-week low at 1.3807 and EURGBP rising by a similar magnitude in posting an eight-day high at 0.8636. This came after BoE Governor Bailey said that inflation will remain below the 2% target threshold even after the expected jump due to year-on-year base effects and economic reopening. Bailey also affirmed that the central bank will continue with its QE program for the remainder of 2021. The 10-year gilt yield nudged under 0.790% in the wake of his remarks.
Elsewhere, both EURUSD and USDJPY traded in narrow ranges, respectively above and below their recent lows and highs. AUDUSD drifted lower, though remained above Monday’s low. USDCAD lifted, but remained below yesterday’s rebound high, which was seen after a 37-month low was clocked at 1.2441. The pair had been weighed on by Friday’s strong employment report out of Canada, which sparked a narrowing in the US over Canadian yield differential. A drop in oil prices subsequently countervailed this by weakening the Loonie.
In other news today, BoJ Governor Kuroda said there was no need to change the yield curve control framework, and that it was vital to keep the yield curve low and stable. The Japanese central bank reviews policy later this week, announcing on Friday. US President Biden said that he would not improve relations with China until Beijing ceases its economic coercion of Australia. A renewed rise in Covid cases is being seen in much of Europe, outside the UK, which is being driven, somewhat ironically, by the highly transmissible UK variant. Goldman Sachs are forecasting the 10-year T-note yield to rise to 2%, remarking that this will be digestible for equity markets, but first 1.75% needs to be breached; currently it’s exchanging hands below 1.60% at 1.593%.
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