USD: The US dollar recovered overnight, and equity markets dipped on concern that the US fiscal package may be delayed until at least mid-March. The IMF will release an update of its World Economic Outlook today. This is unlikely to reverse market sentiment if a delay in the recovery is one of the key messages. Nonetheless, such a message is widely expected (the US growth outlook for 2021 is likely to be upgraded though) and it should not have an overly negative impact on markets. It should add to the USD pullback rather than driving the dollar actively higher.
CAD: The CAD is little changed to start the week; firm crude oil is providing some anchoring for the CAD amid mixed stocks and other domestic uncertainties (such as the Federal government’s slow vaccine roll out and concerns that the Biden administration may not mean much change on the trade front as it promotes “Buy American” at home. The BoC’s focus on the exchange rate is perhaps a further impediment to the CAD pressing higher at present, even if CAD gains are broadly supported by the rebound in domestic terms of trade. Look for the CAD to trend in line with the broader market tone for now
EUR: Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte is expected to hand in his resignation today, but it is widely expected that he will receive a new mandate from the President to form a new government. The risk of early elections thus remains low as is any negative spillover into EUR/USD. The pair has remained very resilient to the latest Italian political noise and does not hold any risk premium based on most market estimates. EUR/USD continues to remain rangebound in the 1.2050-1.2200 range.
GBP: The UK labour market report did not provide any negative surprise this morning (November unemployment was modestly lower vs expectations, while weekly earnings turned higher), suggesting a day of calm for GBP today.
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