The US dollar was dumped after the FOMC statement when their tone was less hawkish than expected. Fed officials downgraded growth and inflation forecasts while showing median expectations of two rate hikes for the year down from four. Fed head Yellen highlighted the weaker global growth as their main reason for staying cautious and for seeing downside risks, also citing that the improvements in the jobs market only have a modest effect on inflation. Philly Fed index, initial jobless claims, and current account balance are due today.
The euro took advantage of dollar weakness but lost ground to comdolls on risk appetite. There were no major reports out of the euro zone yesterday while today has the final CPI readings due. No revisions from the headline reading of -0.2% and the core reading of 0.7% are expected.
The pound was also able to advance against the safe-havens but was no match to comdoll strength. Data from the UK was actually stronger than expected, as the number of claimants fell 18K in February versus the projected 8.8K decline. The average earnings index improved from 1.9% to 2.1% to show stronger wage growth. However, traders appear to be careful ahead of today’s BOE statement, although no actual policy changes are expected.
The franc managed to outpace the dollar in recent trading sessions despite the lack of top-tier data from Switzerland. Today has the SNB decision on tap and no actual policy changes are expected, although some jawboning might take place especially since the ECB just pumped up their stimulus efforts.
The yen lost ground when risk appetite picked up after the FOMC statement. There were no major reports out of Japan yesterday while the trade balance released a few hours back missed expectations. BOJ Governor Kuroda has a testimony lined up today and might spur volatility for yen pairs.
Commodity Currencies (AUD, NZD, CAD)
The comdolls were big winners in yesterday’s sessions, as a smaller buildup in crude oil inventories was reported and New Zealand printed a strong GDP reading. The economy grew 0.9% in Q4 2015 versus expectations of a 0.7% expansion. US crude oil inventories rose only 1.3 million barrels instead of the estimated 2.9 million rise. Australia’s jobs report is up for release next.