Forex news for New York trade on March 15, 2021:
- Gold up $4 to $1730
- US 10-year yields down 2 bps to 1.60%
- WTI crude oil down 26-cents to $65.35
- S&P 500 up 23 points to 3966
- NZD leads, EUR lags
A year ago markets were in full freakout mode but the Ides of March passed as one of the quieter days of the year. Markets were calm as Treasury yields ticked lower and equities grinded higher.
In FX, there was a brief bout of life as Germany, then France and Italy halted the AstraZeneca vaccine on blood clotting concerns. That led to a broad flight to safety and a decent bid in the dollar. Ultimately though, the market concluded that with 17m of the doses already delivered, the results couldn’t be that bad or there would be more problems. Either that or other vaccines will pick up the slack.
The moves faded fairly quickly with AUD/USD calling to 0.7706 (a session low) form 0.7725 and then promptly recovering and eventually finishing at a US high of 0.7756.
Naturally, cable and the euro were hit as well but the declines marked the lows for both and GBP/USD finished 50 pips from the lows (but still down 25 pips on the day).
There’s some sense of waiting for the Fed here and there’s been a consistent pattern of hand-wringing ahead of the FOMC. If so, that should be the case on Tues/Wed but there were no signs of it today with US equities finishing on the highs.