US dollar reverses early gains

Risk sentiment climbs after Trump signs US stimulus bill 

The US dollar moved higher in its early session but reversed these gains after President Trump signed into law the US omnibus bill releasing fiscal stimulus and funding for the US government through 2021. Trump shocked Capitol Hill last week when he threatened to veto the bill unless stimulus checks were increased, but in the end, he gave his approval, which averted a partial government shutdown. This led to a wave of risk-seeking sentiment with the Australian and New Zealand dollars both rising over 0.40%. It should be noted though, that although both have a high beta to the world economic cycle, both markets are closed today, and the gains could be as much about liquidity as US stimulus.

Elsewhere amongst the majors, both euro and sterling have risen 0.30% to 1.2215 and 1.3560 respectively. The signing of the Brexit trade agreement was a massive sigh of relief to financial markets, which had spent the last few months buying sterling in anticipation of the outcome. The fact that the world is long sterling probably explains why sterling did not leap to greater heights after the announcement last week. Nevertheless, sterling should target 1.3800 in the coming weeks. Markets are likely to wait until next week though before buying again, fearful of massive bottlenecks at the English Channel as the new rules take effect.

Asian currencies have rallied in sympathy this morning, boosted by the presidential signature. Across the region, the CNY, SGD, MYR, and JPY are all between 0.10% to 0.20% higher versus the greenback. The Thai baht remains an outlier, with USD/THB rising 0.25% to 30.110 today. The outbreak of Covid-19 just outside Bangkok has raised fears that the reopening of Thailand’s vital tourism sector will be delayed, weighing on sentiment. In the greater scheme of things though, the baht remains in a structural rally, and the weakness is unlikely to persist unless Covid-19 numbers explode.

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.

Jeffrey Halley

Jeffrey Halley

Senior Market Analyst - Asia Pacific
With more than 30 years of FX experience – from spot/margin trading and NDFs through to currency options and futures – Jeffrey Halley is OANDA’s senior market analyst for Asia Pacific, responsible for providing timely and relevant macro analysis covering a wide range of asset classes. He has previously worked with leading institutions such as Saxo Capital Markets, DynexCorp Currency Portfolio Management, IG, IFX, Fimat Internationale Banque, HSBC and Barclays. A highly sought-after analyst, Jeffrey has appeared on a wide range of global news channels including Bloomberg, BBC, Reuters, CNBC, MSN, Sky TV, Channel News Asia and the New York Times. He was born in New Zealand and holds an MBA from the Cass Business School.
Jeffrey Halley
Jeffrey Halley

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