The mighty US dollar surrendered ground against its major peers yesterday as higher beta currencies were sought in a broadly risk-on market. The commodity currencies fared the best with the Australian dollar the stand out performer. Stock markets jumped as the Federal Reserve provided a soothing tone to reassure investors.
Wall Street cheered yesterday as Fed chair Powell offered a confident message that the central bank would continue to act aggressively and appropriately to address the current crisis. He expressed the bank’s desire to ensure they used all tools necessary and would utilise them to the full extent of their limits. The US dollar edged lower as Powell answered the media’s questions and stock markets continued to plough higher. It appears the Federal Reserve has almost cured the anxieties of Wall Street; let’s hope the US government can provide just as much help to Main Street – the general population who will undoubtedly bear the largest share of pain from this cruel pandemic! Sadly, as always, Wall Street will likely come out on top.
Today focus shifts back to Europe. The ECB will be announcing its latest monetary policy insights. No major changes are expected from Madame Lagarde, however, many will be looking for clues on what tools are available to the central bank should the eurozone continue to suffer economically for an extended period of time.
Before the European Central Bank’s announcement, eurozone Q1 2020 GDP will be released. This follows on from yesterday’s US number which printed at -4.8% vs. 4% expected. The eurozone’s reading is expected at -3.7% but could be a lot worse given that the region went into lockdown a lot earlier than the US. Buckle up – Thursday should be another volatile but interesting trading day.
Written by Viv Savani. 8:39am, April 30th 2020
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