The Interbank Market News Scan: Jobs report adds to the argument that the U.S. is at full employment.

Interbank, Kazakhstan, tenge. “The Kazakh tenge KZT= weakened 2.6% to 509.70 per dollar on the interbank market on Friday, Eikon Refinitiv data showed.” See article here. Source: Nasdaq.

Interbank, China, foreign exchange. “The following are the central parity rates of the Chinese currency renminbi, or the yuan, against 24 major currencies announced on Friday by the China Foreign Exchange Trade System.” See article here. Source: Xinhuanet.

Interbank, Russia, stock market. “A Russian stock market analyst pulled out a bottle and drank to the death of Russia’s stock market during an interview live on local television. The clip went viral Thursday, a week into the Russian invasion of neighboring Ukraine and as Russia’s economy is hammered with Western sanctions.” See article here. Source: CNBC.

Interbank, blockchain, bitcoin. “Dr. Eswar Prasad, professor of Trade Policy at Cornell University and author of ‘The Future of Money: How the Digital Revolution is Transforming Currencies and Finance,’ discusses the pros and cons of Bitcoin as a currency.” See article here. Source: CNBC.

Interbank, money markets. “A closely-watched measure of money-market stress and dollar funding conditions rose again on Friday to its highest level since May 2020, as the knock-on effects of the war in Ukraine rippled out globally.” See article. Source: Reuters.

Interbank, United States, labor, jobs report. Non-farm payrolls rose by 678,000 in February while the unemployment rate fell to 3.8%. See report here. Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Foreign exchange rates and dollar index as of 9:40 am AST

EUR/USD=1.10805

GBP/USD=1.33712

USD/CAD=1.26463

USD/MXN=20.6664

USD/NGN=415.42

USD/GHS=6.80185

USD/INR=75.7279

USD/JPY=115.606

USD/CNY=6.31788

USD/BTC=0.00002

Source: OANDA

Dollar Index-98.58

Source: MarketWatch

Interbank Market News Scan: Higher dollar demand sends Pakistan rupee downward.

Interbank, Russia, commodities. “Currencies of commodity-exporting economies rallied on Wednesday as oil and metal prices soared in the aftermath of stinging sanctions on Russia over its invasion of Ukraine, while the rouble widened its divergence between onshore and offshore trading.” See article here. Source: Reuters.

Interbank, Russia, interest rates. “Bankers and investors are nervously watching Russia’s interbank interest rates for a spike that would foreshadow the start of a banking crisis. While rates have risen in recent days, they are not yet at the levels that would ring alarm bells, Capital Economics’ senior analyst Jason Turvey said in a note on March 2.” See article here. Source: BNE Intellinews.

Interbank, Pakistan, rupee, foreign exchange. “The rupee gave up the previous session’s gain on Wednesday amid higher dollar demand from importers and fears of worsening current account deficit, dealers said.” See article here.

Foreign exchange rates as of 11:20 pm AST

EUR/USD=1.1107

GBP/USD=1.33797

USD/CAD=1.26912

USD/MXN=20.5265

USD/JPY=114.937

USD/CNY=6.31083

USD/INR=75.4949

USD/NGN=415.524

Source: OANDA

Dollar Index=97.53

Source: MarketWatch

Interbank Market News Scan: Remittances to Pakistan decline; Chinese bonds offering safe haven for investors concerned about volatility …

Interbank, Ghana, cedi. “Uncertainties surrounding the country’s ongoing access to forex are causing speculations on the FX market which has effectively driven the spread between cedi depreciation on the interbank and the retail markets.” See article here. Source: GhanaWeb

Interbank, China, yuan. “Holdings of Chinese government bonds by offshore investors rose in January despite a steep drop in yield premiums over U.S. government debt, as investors continued to seek safe havens from inflation and rising rates afflicting other markets.” See article here. Source: Nasdaq

Interbank, Pakistan, rupee. “Rupee slipped 0.13 percent (-23 paisa) against the US dollar last week despite recent inflows from the International Monetary Fund.” See article here. Source: Daily Times

Interbank, China, bonds. “China’s interbank treasury bond index in net price opened at 996.19 points Monday, lower than the previous close of 997.24 points, according to the China Foreign Exchange Trade System.” See article here. Source: China.org.cn

Foreign exchange rates and dollar index as of 5:20 am EDT

EUR/USD=1.13456

GBP/USD=1.35484

USD/MXN=20.5234

USD/GTQ=7.51781

USD/NGN=416.51

USD/GHS=6.32313

USD/VND=22,686.8

USD/JPY=115.451

USD/KRW=1,199.56

USD/INR=75.412

USD/BTC=0.00002

USD/ETH=0.00034

Source: OANDA

Dollar Index=96.29

Source: MarketWatch

Interbank Market News Scan: Pakistan rupee losing against the dollar; Reserve Bank of Australia under pressure to hike rates; Bitcoin strengthens.

Interbank, State Bank of Pakistan. “The rupee continued to register marginal losses against the US dollar on Wednesday amid a slight uptick in greenback demand from importers.” See article here. Source: GeoNews

Interbank, Reserve Bank of Australia. “Bonds extended their losses as financial markets ramped up the pressure on the Reserve Bank of Australia to raise the cash rate as soon as May, in response to persistent inflationary pressures challenging its dovish stance.” See article here. Source: Financial Review

Interbank, Nepal Rastra Bank. “Foreign reserves have depleted due to high imports in the country. According to the data released by Nepal Rastra Bank (NRB) the current foreign reserves can support the import of goods and services for six and half months only.” See article here. Source: Khabarhub

Interbank, Bangladesh. “The Bangladesh Bank has asked foreign-currency dealer banks to submit their daily exchange position statements using a new rationalised input template (RTI) to ensure better monitoring. In a circular on Monday, the central bank said it had decided to replace the existing RTI for further convenience of supervision.” See article here. Source: The Business Standard

Foreign exchange, India, travel. “With countries around the globe opening doors to vaccinated travelers, foreign travel bookings are witnessing a massive surge in India. The rise in globetrotting among Indians has led to a considerable increase in forex transactions as well.” See article here. Source: IndianWeb2

Foreign exchange, South Africa, rand. “A generally weakening rand and mounting inflationary pressures have meant the South African Reserve Bank (SARB) has once again raised interest rates, to the distinct detriment of the weakest members of our society.” — Brian Benfield. See article here. Source: BizNews 

Foreign exchange rates of interest as of 9:18 am EDT

EUR/USD=1.1418

GBP/USD=1.3539

USD/MXN=20.6288

USD/GTQ=7.5230

USD/NGN=415.644

USD/GHS=6.3541

USD/VND=22,706.1

USD/JPY=115.431

USD/INR=74.6417

USD/BTC=0.00002

USD/ETH=0.00032

Source: OANDA

Dollar Index=95.47

Source: MarketWatch

Interbank Market News Scan: Indian rupee strengthens against weakening dollar; US adds 467,000 jobs …

Interbank, Indian rupee. “The rupee surged 18 paise to close at 74.70 (provisional) against the U.S. dollar on Friday tracking the weakness of the American currency in the overseas market….” See article here. Source: The Hindu

Interbank, Pakistan, remittances. “Home remittances are a major source of income for families of expatriate Pakistanis and contribute significantly in country’s economic activities. The State Bank of Pakistan together with the Government of Pakistan has introduced various policy initiatives, from time to time, to increase the flow of home remittances through formal channels …” See article here. Source: MarketScreener

Interbank, Pakistan, remittances. “In order to improve foreign exchange liquidity in the inter-bank market, the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) and the government are now incentivising Exchange Companies (EC) to surrender 100% of home remittances against Re1 for each U.S. dollar.” See article here. Source: Business Recorder

Interbank, US Department of Labor, unemployment. “Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 467,000 in January, and the unemployment rate was little changed at 4.0 percent. Employment growth continued in leisure and hospitality, in professional and business services, in retail trade, and in transportation and warehousing. Average hourly earnings increased 23 cents to $31.63.” See report here. Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Foreign exchange rates of interest as of 9:00 am EDT

EUR/USD=1.1350

GBP/USD=1.3577

USD/MXN=20.5930

USD/GTQ=7.5110

USD/NGN=415.614

USD/GHS=6.3273

USD/VND=22,646.7

USD/JPY=114.72

USD/INR=74.7056

USD/BTC=0.00003

USD/ETH=0.00038

Source: OANDA

Dollar Index: 95.64 Source: MarketWatch

Interbank market news scan as of 3:32 pm AST: Peso, Indian rupee, and Japanese yen weaken against the dollar

Currency pairsExchange Rate Before Event 1:00pm ASTEventPost EventExchange Rate Post Event
AUD/USD0.7666Federal Reserve announcement0.7681Dollar weakens vs AUD
USD/CAD1.2774Federal Reserve announcement1.2759Canadian dollar strengthens vs US dollar
USD/CNY6.4822Federal Reserve announcement6.4822No change
EUR/USD1.2075Federal Reserve announcement1.2118Dollar weakens vs the euro
USD/INR73.0065Federal Reserve announcement73.0500Indian rupee continues weakness vs US dollar
GBP/USD1.3689Federal Reserve announcement1.3715US dollar weakens vs British pound
USD/JPY104.0000Federal Reserve announcement104.0600Japanese yen showing weakness vs US dollar
USD/MXN20.1832Federal Reserve announcement20.7000Mexican peso weakens against US dollar
USD/DKK6.1554Federal Reserve announcement6.1554No change
USD/NOK8.6452Federal Reserve announcement8.6242Norwegian Krona strengthens vs US dollar
Sources: Federal Reserve, Reuters

Today, Jerome Powell, chairman of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve issued the following statement:

“The Federal Reserve is committed to using its full range of tools to support the U.S. economy in this challenging time, thereby promoting its maximum employment and price stability goals.

The COVID-19 pandemic is causing tremendous human and economic hardship across the United States and around the world. The pace of the recovery in economic activity and employment has moderated in recent months, with weakness concentrated in the sectors most adversely affected by the pandemic. Weaker demand and earlier declines in oil prices have been holding down consumer price inflation. Overall financial conditions remain accommodative, in part reflecting policy measures to support the economy and the flow of credit to U.S. households and businesses.

The path of the economy will depend significantly on the course of the virus, including progress on vaccinations. The ongoing public health crisis continues to weigh on economic activity, employment, and inflation, and poses considerable risks to the economic outlook.

The Committee seeks to achieve maximum employment and inflation at the rate of 2 percent over the longer run. With inflation running persistently below this longer-run goal, the Committee will aim to achieve inflation moderately above 2 percent for some time so that inflation averages 2 percent over time and longer‑term inflation expectations remain well anchored at 2 percent. The Committee expects to maintain an accommodative stance of monetary policy until these outcomes are achieved. The Committee decided to keep the target range for the federal funds rate at 0 to 1/4 percent and expects it will be appropriate to maintain this target range until labor market conditions have reached levels consistent with the Committee’s assessments of maximum employment and inflation has risen to 2 percent and is on track to moderately exceed 2 percent for some time. In addition, the Federal Reserve will continue to increase its holdings of Treasury securities by at least $80 billion per month and of agency mortgage‑backed securities by at least $40 billion per month until substantial further progress has been made toward the Committee’s maximum employment and price stability goals. These asset purchases help foster smooth market functioning and accommodative financial conditions, thereby supporting the flow of credit to households and businesses.

In assessing the appropriate stance of monetary policy, the Committee will continue to monitor the implications of incoming information for the economic outlook. The Committee would be prepared to adjust the stance of monetary policy as appropriate if risks emerge that could impede the attainment of the Committee’s goals. The Committee’s assessments will take into account a wide range of information, including readings on public health, labor market conditions, inflation pressures and inflation expectations, and financial and international developments.”

Voting for the monetary policy action were Jerome H. Powell, Chair; John C. Williams, Vice Chair; Thomas I. Barkin; Raphael W. Bostic; Michelle W. Bowman; Lael Brainard; Richard H. Clarida; Mary C. Daly; Charles L. Evans; Randal K. Quarles; and Christopher J. Waller.

Strategic takeaways:

  1. Traders should take a strategic position in the flow of Federal Reserve decision making on rates with the expectation of continued dollar weakness for some time as the Federal Reserve maintains its flexible average inflation rate policy for the net one to two years.
  2. The Federal Reserve may be growing weary of noting the need for fiscal action on the part of the U.S. Congress or sees no need for making such calls given the gravity of the virus and a Democratic-controlled White House and Congress that appear intent on providing another fiscal injection into the economy.
  3. Traders should expect Congress to authorize additional borrowing to finance additional stimulus. Additional fiscal demand may come at a higher interest rate price for taxpayers. Depending on how government structures the stimulus spending, monies directed to infrastructure and the ensuing contracts entered into to bring about infrastructure spending may attract additional domestic and foreign capital.
  4. The Mexican peso, Indian rupee, and Japanese yen weakened after the announcement. The dollar continued its weakness in its more popular currency pairs: the EUR/USD and the GBP/USD. The Chinese yuan remained unchanged expectedly given the People’s Bank of China’s recent announcement on their currency’s value.

Buying a piece of America from abroad? Here are your rates….

As of 9:04 am EST 22 October 2020, here are your exchange rates from selected countries:

1 Euro = $1.19 USD

1 Kwanza= $0.0015 USD

1 Rand= $0.061 USD

1 Naira= $0.0026 USD

1 Rupee= $0.014 USD

1 Shilling= $0.0092 USD

1 Yuan= $0.15 USD

1 Eastern Caribbean Dollar= $0.31 USD

Source: Morningstar