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Appetite for risk-off wanes as China announces nationwide screening for virus; Sterling strengthens on positive data

The markets move away from safe haven assets following news out of China that the country will be conducting nationwide screening to contain the new deadly respiratory virus. Data out of the UK shows that business optimism is better-than-expected causing the currency to appreciate almost 1%.

“Find ecstasy in life; the mere sense of living is joy enough.”
Emily Dickinson
  • FX Rates
    January 22, 2020

    Rates are not real time. Rates are today's indicative mid-market rates as of time of publishing, which may vary. Please contact SVB for a current quote.

  • USD

    The US dollar remains steady. President Donald Trump stated in interview with CNBC “I want this dollar to be strong. I want it to be so powerful. I want it to be great. But if you lower the interest rates, so many good things would happen.”

    Data released showed better-than-expected for business optimism. GBP/USD strengthened almost 1% trading around 1.3150. Sterling has erased losses since Bank of England’s governor Mark Carney spoke on January 9.
    Reports showed that a leader of Italy's anti-establishment Five Star Movement, Luigi Di Maio, is about to resign - causing Italian bonds to decline. In reaction to this, EUR/USD dropped to lowest level since December 25 trading at 1.1075. The currency pair has slightly rebounded from the low.

    The Canadian dollar is stronger than most of its peers ahead of the Bank of Canada rate decision due to be released this morning at 10am. The expectation is for officials to hold rates unchanged.  


    China announced nationwide screening to contain a deadly new respiratory virus which caused demand for haven assets to wane. In reaction to risk-on market sentiment the Japanese yen has weakened.

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About the Author

Cate Camerota is currently an FX Advisor at Silicon Valley Bank focusing on early stage and growth Technology names in New England and Eastern Canada. Prior to SVB, Cate worked in FX Sales/Trading at Wells Fargo and Citizens Bank where she supported a portfolio of Middle Market and Mid-Corp clients throughout the Northeast. Cate helped clients identify FX risk and implement strategic hedging programs.

Outside of work, Cate is involved with the Boys & Girls Club of Boston Friends Council, Ladies FORE Finance (women's golf league) and My Life My Choice.

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