European update – Trade war, ECB, gold

Cautious optimism ahead of ECB

There’s caution optimism across European markets on Thursday as China and the US offer gestures of goodwill and investors get excited about a massive ECB stimulus package.

Source – Thomson Reuters Eikon

The trade war has seriously tested investors’ eternal optimism over the past year and while there has been scares and investors faith has at times wavered, we’re now back at near record highs again and all is hunky dory. I mean, we’re also apparently headed for recession so perhaps that’s not entirely true.

But we have apparently seen a thawing in relations between the US and China, following token gestures of goodwill between the two, so perhaps we’re at least on the right track. Unfortunately, I’m not really convinced and don’t think they represent a thawing of anything. We’re no closer to a deal despite the niceties and more tariffs are coming. Investors don’t really want to believe that though.

Sign up for our next webinar below

Draghi to go out with a bang or a whimper?

The big event today is undoubtedly the ECB and whether Draghi is going to go out with a bang or a whimper. Everyone is convinced Draghi means business today and is packing the bazooka for one last showdown. Investors have high expectations with a rate cut, QE and tiered deposit rates expected, combined with all the technical adjustments that makes it all possible.

I can’t help but fear that investors have got a little ahead of themselves here. There are hawks on the board that have repeatedly questioned the need for stimulus and I question whether Draghi’s penultimate meeting as President is appropriate for such a huge package. Draghi isn’t shy of bold policy decisions though, as we’ve seen over the last eight years so who knows.

Gold looking a little soft despite rebound

Gold is back above $1,500 in early trade and enjoying a second day in the green after having tumbled from its peak earlier in the month. It does feel like the mood has shifted towards gold in the near-term, following such a strong rally. The key level above remains around $1,530, while below a break of $1,480 would be very interesting.

Gold Daily Chart

OANDA fxTrade Advanced Charting Platform

Economic Calendar

For a look at all of today’s economic events, check out our economic calendar.

This article is for general information purposes only. It is not investment advice or a solution to buy or sell securities. Opinions are the authors; not necessarily that of OANDA Corporation or any of its affiliates, subsidiaries, officers or directors. Leveraged trading is high risk and not suitable for all. You could lose all of your deposited funds.

Craig Erlam

Craig Erlam

Senior Currency Analyst at OANDA
Based in London, England, Craig Erlam joined OANDA in 2015 as a Market Analyst. With more than five years' experience as a financial market analyst and trader, he focuses on both fundamental and technical analysis while conducting macroeconomic commentary. He has been published by The Financial Times, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal and The Telegraph, and he also appears regularly as a guest commentator on networks including Sky News, Bloomberg, CNBC and BBC. Craig holds a full membership to the Society of Technical Analysts and he is recognized as a Certified Financial Technician by the International Federation of Technical Analysts.