After having suffered heavy losses against its rivals after the US Federal Reserve’s (Fed) policy announcements late Wednesday, the US Dollar continues to weaken early Thursday. The Swiss National Bank (SNB) and the Bank of England (BOE) will announce interest rate decisions later in the session. The US economic docket will feature weekly Initial Jobless Claims, Chicago Fed National Activity Index and New Home Sales data for February. Finally, Eurostat will publish preliminary Consumer Confidence for March.
As expected, the Fed raised its policy rate by 25 basis points (bps) to the range of 4.75-5% following its March policy meeting. In its policy statement, the Fed dropped the reference to “ongoing increases” in rates and said that some additional policy firming may be appropriate. Additionally, the revised Summary of Economic Projections revealed that the terminal rate projection remained unchanged at 5.1%. Regarding the Silicon Valley Bank’s collapse and its implications, FOMC Chairman Jerome Powell noted that they were likely to see tighter financing conditions and noted that this would assist them in cooling down the economy. Finally, Powell told reporters that they have not talked about making any changes to the balance sheet implementation.
Meanwhile, US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen told the Senate Appropriations Committee on Wednesday that they are not considering or discussing anything to do with blank insurance or guarantees for bank assets.
Following Tuesday’s rebound, the benchmark 10-year US Treasury bond yield turned south and fell nearly 5% on Wednesday. In turn, the US Dollar Index came under bearish pressure late Wednesday and extended its slide early Thursday, falling below 102.00 for the first time since early February. Wall Street’s main indexes fell sharply and closed deep in negative territory on Wednesday but US stock index futures are up between 0.5% and 0.8% early Thursday.
USD/CHF continues to push lower following Wednesday’s drop and was last seen trading slightly below 0.9150. The SNB is widely expected to raise its policy rate by 50 basis points to 1.5%.
GBP/USD capitalized on the broad-based US Dollar weakness and gathered bullish momentum. The pair clings to its gains above 1.2300 early Thursday. The BOE is forecast to hike its key rate by 25 bps to 4.25% following Wednesday’s hot inflation figures from the UK. Since there will not be a press conference, the vote split could drive Pound Sterling’s performance against its major rivals.
Following Wednesday’s impressive upsurge, EUR/USD stretched higher in the Asian session on Thursday and reached its highest level in nearly eight weeks above 1.0920.
USD/JPY came under renewed bearish pressure after the Fed event and broke below 131.00. In the early European session, the pair stays on the back foot and trades in negative territory at around 130.70.
Gold price capitalized on plummeting US yields and gained more than 1% on Wednesday. XAU/USD preserves its bullish momentum and trades higher on the day near $1,980.
Bitcoin turned south late Wednesday and lost more than 3%. BTC/USD, however, found its footing early Thursday and started to climb toward $28,000. After having lost nearly 4% on Wednesday, Ethereum is up 1% early Thursday, trading slightly above $1,750.