Foreign exchange rates as of 2:50 pm AST

PairsPer Federal Reserve as of 18 December 2020Per OANDA as of 18 December 2020Per OANDA as of 24 December 2020
GBP/USD1.34971.35201.34485
USD/CAD1.27761.27601.28716
USD/CNH6.53956.51976.53226
USD/DKK6.07986.07316.10305
EUR/USD1.22361.22481.21854
USD/INR73.530073.413973.7316
USD/MXN19.981319.897820.0878
USD/JPY103.3500103.35103.50
USD/NOK8.59598.58788.68864
USD/SEK8.27868.27478.30357
USD/CHF0.88500.88440.88859

Legal/Political events impacting foreign and cryptocurrency exchanges

SEC Issues Statement and Requests Comment Regarding the Custody of Digital Asset Securities by Special Purpose Broker-Dealers

Washington D.C., Dec. 23, 2020 —

The Securities and Exchange Commission today issued a statement and request for comment regarding the custody of digital asset securities by broker-dealers in order to encourage innovation around the application of Securities Exchange Act Rule 15c3-3 to digital asset securities.

The statement sets forth the Commission’s position that, for a period of five years, a broker-dealer operating under the circumstances set forth in the statement will not be subject to a Commission enforcement action on the basis that the broker-dealer deems itself to have obtained and maintained physical possession or control of customer fully paid and excess margin digital asset securities for the purposes of paragraph (b)(1) of Rule 15c3-3. These circumstances, among other things, include that the broker-dealer limits its business to digital asset securities, establishes and implements policies and procedures reasonably designed to mitigate the risks associated with conducting a business in digital asset securities, and provides customers with certain disclosures regarding the risks of engaging in transactions involving digital asset securities.

In addition, the Commission is requesting comment to provide the Commission and its staff with an opportunity to gain additional insight into the evolving standards and best practices with respect to custody of digital asset securities. Such insights will serve to inform any potential future Commission action in this space.

The Commission statement and request for comment are published on the Commission’s website and will become effective 60 days after publication in the Federal Register. The Commission welcomes engagement from interested parties on these issues.

Source: U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission

As of 11:34 pm AST, the US dollar in terms of Caribbean currencies is flat to strengthening with some volatility …

Pairs OANDA as of 18 December 2020 OANDA as of 23 December 2020 Notes 
USD/BBD 2.00 2.00 Pegged to the US dollar 
USD/TTD 6.6719 6.68062 Dollar strengthening 
USD/JMD 141.803 141.973 Over the last 30 days, exchange rate fell from 145.825 
USD/XCD 2.70 2.70 Pegged to the US dollar 
USD/GYD 205.239 205.570 Although risen from 204.934 on 23 November, the rise has been accompanied by volatility. 

Source: OANDA

Legal/Political events impacting US-Caribbean foreign exchange

President Trump modifies Harmonized Tariff System to reflect extension of Caribbean Basin Initiative

On 22 December 2020, President Donald J Trump announced a modification of the Harmonized Tariff System for the purpose of including the extension of the Caribbean Basin Initiative signed into law last October. The proclamation read as follows:

“The Caribbean Basin Economic Recovery Act, as amended (the “CBERA”), (title II of Public Law 98-67, 97 Stat. 384 (19 U.S.C. 2701 et seq.)), instituted a duty preference program that applies to a product of a Caribbean Basin country that has been designated by the President as a beneficiary country. On October 10, 2020, the President signed into law the Extension of the Caribbean Basin Economic Recovery Act (Public Law 116-164, 134 Stat. 758), which extends certain preferential tariff treatment accorded under the CBERA to September 30, 2030. I have determined, pursuant to section 604 of the Trade Act, that it is necessary to modify the HTS to reflect the extension of the CBERA.”

According to the U.S. International Trade Commission, the Harmonized Tariff Schedule is made up of a hierarchical structure for describing all goods in trade for duty, quota, and statistical purposes.

Sources: Executive Office of the President; U.S. International Trade Commission

As of 6:01 am AST, the American dollar shows signs of strength even as Trump hints of relief bill veto …

Pairs Federal Reserve as of 18 December 2020 OANDA as of 18 December 2020 OANDA as of 23 December 2020 
GBP/USD 1.3497 1.3520 1.33917 
USD/CAD 1.2776 1.2760 1.28855 
USD/CNH 6.5395 6.5197 6.53796 
USD/DKK 6.0798 6.0731 6.09361 
EUR/USD 1.2236 1.2248 1.22053 
USD/INR 73.5300 73.4139 73.8348 
USD/MXN 19.9813 19.8978 20.0804 
USD/JPY 103.3500 103.35 103.49 
USD/NOK 8.5959 8.5878 8.68615 
USD/SEK 8.2786 8.2747 8.28832 
USD/CHF .8850 .8844 .88724 

Legal/Political events impacting foreign currencies

Trump wants more money for taxpayer households

Bloomberg reporting today President Donald J. Trump’s concerns that the pandemic relief package approved by Congress does not go far enough in providing aid to households. The President would like the current proposed amount of $600 relief for an individual increased to $2,000. Mr Trump has not definitively said that he will veto the $900 billion package which is due for his signature by 28 December.

As of 4:07 am AST, the price of Ether and Bitcoin per various currencies …

BTC ETH 
BTC/USD=23080.3 ETH/USD=614.193 
BTC/EUR=18,907.8 ETH/EUR=503.158 
BTC/JPY=2,388,500 ETH/JPY=63,560.7 
BTC/CNH=150,898 ETH/CNH=4,015.67 
BTC/DKK=140,642 ETH/DKK=3,742.65 
BTC/CHF=20,477.7 ETH/CHF=544.935 
BTC/GBP=17,232 ETH/GBP=458.564 

Source: OANDA

Legal/Political news impacting cybercurrencies

How not to treat forex traders: CFTC wins order of restitution against Winston Reed Investments

December 22, 2020

Washington, D.C. — The Commodity Futures Trading Commission today announced that Judge Max O. Cogburn Jr., of the U.S. District Court for the Western District of North Carolina, entered a consent order against Mark N. Pyatt, of North Carolina,imposing a permanent injunction and ordering Pyatt to make restitution in the amount of $255,850. The order also permanently bans Pyatt from registering with the CFTC and from trading commodity futures and retail foreign exchange contracts (forex). In the order, Pyatt admitted to fraudulently soliciting individuals to place funds in a commodity pool and to misappropriating most of the funds he solicited.

The consent order resolves a CFTC case against Pyatt that was filed in the Western District of North Carolina on February 10, 2020. [See CFTC Press Release No. 8120-20] The CFTC’s litigation continues against Pyatt’s company, Winston Reed Investments LLC.

The consent order finds that from at least April 2017 to February 2019, Pyatt accepted $276,850 from pool participants to trade commodity futures and forex. The consent order also finds that Pyatt misappropriated most of pool participants’ funds for business expenses and personal use, and to make Ponzi-like payments to other pool participants, while using only a fraction of the funds to trade. In addition, despite overall net trading losses, Pyatt sent reports to investors claiming profits of between 18.8 percent to 86.5 percent per month.

Related Criminal Action

In a parallel criminal action, the U.S. Attorney for the Western District of North Carolina announced that Pyatt pleaded guilty to wire fraud in connection with the scheme. On October 27, 2020, Pyatt was sentenced to 37 months in federal prison and ordered to pay restitution to his victims. [See United States v. Mark Nicholas Pyatt, Case No. 1:20-cr-00016, ECF No. 42 (W.D.N.C. Nov. 5, 2020)]

The CFTC cautions that orders requiring repayment of funds to victims may not result in the recovery of any money lost because the wrongdoers may not have sufficient funds or assets. The CFTC will continue to fight vigorously for the protection of customers and to ensure the wrongdoers are held accountable.

The CFTC appreciates the cooperation and assistance of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of North Carolina in this matter.

The Division of Enforcement staff members responsible for this case are Michael Loconte, James A. Garcia, Erica Bodin, and Rick Glaser.

* * * * * *

CFTC’s Foreign Currency (Forex) Fraud Advisory

The CFTC has issued several customer protection fraud advisories, including the Forex Fraud Advisory, which provides information about a type of fraud involving the trading of foreign currencies and how customers can detect, avoid, and report these scams.

Customers can report suspicious activities or information, such as possible violations of commodity trading laws, to the Division of Enforcement via a toll-free hotline 866-FON-CFTC (866-366-2382) or file a tip or complaint online.

Source: Commodity Futures Trading Commission

Foreign exchange rates; Pandemic stimulus bill passes Congress

Pairs Federal Reserve as of 18 December 2020 OANDA as of 21 December 2020 
GBP/USD 1.3497 1.33499 
USD/CAD 1.2776 1.28559 
USD/CNH 6.5395 6.53668 
USD/DKK 6.0798 6.09401 
EUR/USD 1.2236 1.22056 
USD/INR 73.5300 73.7333 
USD/MXN 19.9813 20.1582 
USD/JPY 103.3500 103.4600 
USD/NOK 8.5959 8.6862 
USD/SEK 8.2786 8.2959 
USD/CHF .8850 .8865 
Sources: Federal Reserve and OANDA

Legal/Political news impacting foreign exchange

Congress passes $900 billion relief package

Reuters reporting that the United States Senate has passed a $900 billion coronavirus relief package which includes a one-time $600 payment to eligible American taxpayers. President Donald Trump is expected to sign the legislation later today.

Comparison of foreign exchange rates determined by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System with current market rates.

Federal Reserve as of 4:15 pm 11 December 2020OANDA as of 10:53 am EST 15 December 2020
EUR/USD = 1.2112EUR/USD = 1.21443
GBP/USD = 1.3197GBP/USD = 1.33503
USD/CAD = 1.2767USD/CAD = 1.27548
USD/JPY = 103.880USD/JPY = 103.93

Federal Reserve releases select exchange rates as of 11 December 2020

Atlanta 14 December 2020, 9:43 PM EST

The Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System today released the foreign exchange rates for the following foreign exchange pairs. Compare with exchange rates quoted by foreign exchange broker OANDA as of 9:59 PM EST:

Federal Reserve OANDA

EUR/USD = 1.2112 EUR/USD = 1.21443

GBP/USD = 1.3197 GBP/USD = 1.33503

USD/CAD = 1.2767 USD/CAD = 1.27508

USD/JPY = 103.880 USD/JPY = 103.93

Countries importing American product see continued decline in exchange rates.

The top six trading partners with the United States in terms of total exports to those countries saw their costs for the dollar fall over the past 30 days. The USD/CAD trading pair was priced at 1.3145 CAD on 14 November By 14 December , that rate has fallen by 2.9% to 1.2766 CAD.

The USD/MEX, priced at 20.6473 MXN on 14 November 14, is now down two percent to 20.1201 MXN. Meanwhile, the USD/CHN is now priced at 6.53252, down 1.2% from its 14 November price of 6.6106 CHN.

The USD/JPY is equal today to 104 JPY. On 14 November, this price was .8% higher at 104.82 JPY. And as the world waits for Great Britain and the European Union to settle their divorce, the exchange rate of the USD/GBP pair today at 0.75532 reflects a decline of .60% from the 0.7599 exchange rate back on 14 November.

And speaking of Europe, the USD/EUR pair has an exchange rate today of 0.82533, down 2.5% from the 14 November level of 0.8461.

Source: OANDA

As of 10:37 am AST 11 December 2020, Foreign exchange rates between U.S., select countries in Africa, Asia, and Europe

How to read the chart:

EUR/USD: You want to buy euros (EUR) with US dollars (USD). Where the market determined exchange rate is one EUR for 1.21088 USD, you divide your dollars in hand by the exchange rate to determine the number of euros you will receive.

USD/CAD=1.27702

USD/GBP=0.75077

GBP/USD=1.33175

USD/CNH=6.53412

USD/EUR=0.82575

EUR/USD= 1.21088 

USD/DKK=6.14584

USD/NGN= 379.869  

USD/JPY=104.36

USD/INR=73.6224

USD/GHS=5.84964   

Source: OANDA

Major political/legal event impacting foreign exchange

Treasury Secretary Mnuchin addresses congressional oversight commission on CARES Act

Yesterday, U.S. Treasury Department Secretary Steven Mnuchin made the following address:

“Senator Toomey, Representative Hill, Representative Shalala, and Commissioner Ramamurti, I am pleased to join you today to discuss the Department of the Treasury’s work to execute the National Security Loan Program established in the CARES Act. Treasury has worked diligently to implement every piece of the CARES Act, including the National Security Loan Program, efficiently and transparently. 

NATIONAL SECURITY LOAN PROGRAM

The CARES Act provides funding for up to $17 billion in loans to businesses critical to maintaining national security related to losses incurred as a result of coronavirus. The CARES Act authorized Treasury to make loans and loan guarantees for “businesses critical to maintaining national security.” The statute, however, does not define that term. Therefore, after consulting with the Department of Defense and the Office of Director of National Intelligence, Treasury issued guidance on April 10, 2020, providing that a company can fall within this definition if it meets at least one of three criteria: 


If a company met at least one of the three necessary criteria, Treasury conducted detailed financial and legal reviews of each application pursuant to consistent credit standards that were applied to all applicants. 
To date, Treasury has approved 11 loans totaling nearly $736 million. Information on the companies and dollar amounts are publicly available on our website, Treasury.gov.
Many of the companies we initially expected to take part in the program were able to raise funds in the capital markets, leaving most of the available loan funds unused. Going forward, I urge Congress to re-allocate these funds to provide relief for aviation industry workers, who continue to struggle through no fault of their own. 

CONCLUSION

I would like to thank the members of the Commission for working with us to provide vital economic relief to American workers, families, and businesses. I hope that the extensive amount of information Treasury has provided to the Commission has been helpful to you, and I am pleased to answer any questions you may have.”

As of 11:30 am AST 10 December 2020, Foreign exchange rates between U.S., select countries in East Africa, West Africa, the Caribbean, and Asia, and BitCoin

As of  11:30 am AST, 10 December 2020:

How to read the chart:

CAD/USD: If you come to the United States with one Canadian dollar (CAD)and wish to sell it for a US dollar (USD), the market price is .78103 USD.

USD/CAD: If you take a US dollar (USD) to Canada and wish to sell it for a Canadian dollar (CAD), the market price is 1.28018 CAD

CAD/USD=0.78103   USD/CAD=1.28018

CNH/USD= 0.15339   USD/CNH=6.51820

EUR/USD= 1.21037   USD/EUR=0.82610

DKK/USD =0.16260   USD/DKK=6.14831

NGN/USD= 0.00260   USD/NGN=379.384

JPY/USD=0.00960   USD/JPY=104.19

INR/USD=0.01356      USD/INR=73.5975

JMD/USD=0.00683    USD/JMD=143.446

GYD/USD=0.00469       USD/GYD= 205.184

GHS/USD=0.17031     USD/GHS= 5.84142

XCD/USD=0.37037        USD/XCD= 2.70

KES/USD = 0.00889     USD/KES= 110.408

BBD/USD = 0.50000     USD/BBD = 2.0000

TTD/USD = .14459         USD/TTD= 6.66797

BTC/USD= 18252.40     USD/BTC= 0.00005

Source: OANDA

Major political/legal event impacting foreign exchange

BIS releases Basel III monitoring results on banks

Today, the Bank of International Settlements Basel III committee released results of its survey determining compliance with bank capital requirements developed in 2010 under the Basel III framework.  The framework was developed in response to the financial crisis of 2008.  The objective of Basel III was to modify bank capital requirements thus leading to less variability in a bank’s risk weighted assets.

The survey announced today found that banks were continuing to make progress toward meeting the Basel III requirements and that bank liquidity ratios pre-Covid have been improving.  

Source: Bank of International Settlements