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By XE Market Analysis March 9, 2020 2:43 pm
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    XE Market Analysis: Asia - Mar 09, 2020

    The Dollar index fell to 18-month lows of 94.66 in N.Y. trade on Monday, falling sharply on the back of record low Treasury yields, and severe risk-off conditions. Prospects for further Fed rate cuts will keep the USD under pressure for the time being. The start of an oil price war saw crude prices plunge over 20%, which along with the coronavirus epidemic saw Wall Street put in its worst day since 2008. EUR-USD topped just under the 1.1500 mark in London trade, later steadying on either side of 1.1450. USD-JPY fell to three-plus year lows of 101.18, while USD-CAD remained above the 1.3500 mark as oil prices collapsed. Cable remained firm above 1.3060.

    [EUR, USD]
    EUR-USD rallied to 1.1496 highs, levels last seen in January of 2019. The unwinding of EUR carry trades has reportedly been the driver of Euro gains in recent weeks, as severe risk-off conditions prevail. In addition, the Dollar's interest rate advantage has been narrowing sharply, as Treasury yields print day after day of record lows. Further Fed cuts, which remain fully priced in will also weigh on the Dollar going forward.

    [USD, JPY]
    USD-JPY printed 101.18 low in N.Y. morning trade, with the bottom coming following the halt of trade on Wall Street, as the "level 1" circuit breaker kicked in as the S&P 500 fell 7%. The pairing touched levels last seen in October of 2016. The risk-sensitive Yen rallied from Friday's close near 105.35, though the Dollar has since moved up to 102.68 highs, as Treasury yields bounce from record lows, and as Wall Street remains of its worst levels. Given the backdrop of near market panic over the spread of virus, tanking oil prices, and risk of sharp global economic slowing, further USD-JPY downside is likely in the cards.

    [GBP, USD]
    Cable vaulted to a one-month high at 1.3201 before capping out, and has continued to show a net 0.5% gain on the day despite dropping back to the lower 1.3100s. EUR-GBP, meanwhile, rallied to a five-month high at 0.8770, before correcting back to the 0.8656 low and then lifted back to levels above 0.8720, which leaves the pound nursing a near 1% loss versus the euro on the day. This mixed trading profile will likely remain as long as risk-off positioning dominates in global markets.

    [USD, CHF]
    EUR-CHF dropped to a fresh five-year low of. 1.0544, reflecting safe haven demand for the Swiss currency as concerns rise about the global economic disruptions being caused by efforts to contain the COVID-19 virus. The Swiss franc can be expected to rise further in the coming days, as the virus continue to spread.

    [USD, CAD]
    USD-CAD pulled back from the 34-month highs of 1.3760 highs seen overnight, trading to 1.3570 lows in early North American trade. The slide in oil prices, prompted by a price war initiated by Saudi, weighed on the CAD heavily. WTI crude though, has recovered from four-year lows of $27.34 seen overnight, to $34.88 highs, which has helped USD-CAD lower this morning.

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