Dollar mixed, euro higher as ECB rates unchanged
Scott Petruska, CFA " | December 12, 2019
The dollar showed a mixed performance overnight, higher against the UK pound ahead of today’s UK election, and lower against the euro following the ECB’s announcement of no change in their benchmark rates. Equities are set to open lower alongside European stocks as traders move past this week’s central bank announcements and refocus on the US-China trade war. Trump just tweeted that a US-China trade deal is ‘very close to a big deal’, equities jumped.
December 12, 2019
EUR/USD 1.1145 GBP/USD 1.317 USD/CAD 1.3185 AUD/USD 0.6896 USD/JPY 108.71 USD/CNH 7.0368 USD/ILS 3.4765 USD/MXN 19.090 USD/CHF 0.9825 USD/INR 70.835
The market’s reaction to yesterday’s Fed announcement was net dovish as the FOMC held rates steady and their “dot plot” shows they do not anticipate any rate changes next year. Light trading activity was seen due to traders awaiting two highly important events -- today’s UK election and Sunday’s scheduled U.S. tariffs on Chinese imports.GBP
The UK pound fell from early highs, and now trades lower on the day. A wide one cent trading range was seen, 1.3125-1.3225, as traders adjust positions ahead of today’s UK general election. Results will be announced early morning in the UK, late evening in the States. Opinion polls show a narrowing in the race between the Conservative and Labor Parties, pushing prices much higher for currency options providing downside protection for the pound.EUR
The ECB kept interest rates unchanged today. The euro edged higher and is now trading comfortably over $1.11, but still under key resistance at $1.12. New ECB President Christine Lagarde offered no surprises in her first meeting and press conference as head of the ECB.CAD
The loonie weakened overnight against the US dollar, but is more significantly lower against its G-10 peer currencies. Traders await today’s Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz’s s speech – titled “Seeing the Big Picture with 2020 Vision” -- and press conference.ASIA/PACIFIC
The Chinese yuan weakened slightly overnight as traders await Sunday’s tariff announcement. President Trump has kept China (and us all) guessing on next steps, including whether or not he will postpone the tariffs.