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FOMC Holds the Line

USD: Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell did a great job calming market expectations over a withdrawal of stimulus. Notably, we saw some further yield curve steepening in the 5-30-year US curve, with Fed-sensitive 5-year yields falling back. The Fed does seem to be getting its point across that it will be adjusting policy on actual data, not forecast data, which conveniently buys it some time – probably until the June meeting. Yet a Fed-inspired soft dollar backdrop continues to be challenged by how quickly economic blocs break-out of lockdowns. The US seems well on the path to recovery with a successful vaccine programme and a lot of money.

CAD: Yesterday’s daily close below 1.2410 has added to bearish sentiment, leaving little in the way of concrete support until the 2018 low at 1.2251. Resistance is located at 1.2468 and 1.2576. There is not much in terms of market data today leaving the loonie to trade on broader market themes.

EUR: The EMA holds an extraordinary meeting today to discuss the safety of the AZ vaccine. Full clearance of AZ would be welcomed by the EUR and could drag EUR/$ back to the 1.2040 area. Yet until Europe gets some real momentum on the vaccine roll-out, the EUR will lag against USD.

GBP: A push-back against the 50bp of hikes priced over 3 years could soften GBP a little, but given the vaccine travails on the continent, GBP should hold against its peers.

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