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Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Aussie Dollar Slips After RBA

The Australian dollar slipped against its U.S. counterpart on Tuesday in Asia.
The AUD/USD pair was down 0.3% to 0.6888 by 11:30 PM ET (03:30 GMT). The pair rose over 1% against the greenback after Scott Morrison’s Conservatives surprisingly won parliamentary elections. Analysts said the victory could inject greater certainty into the financial markets. Overnight, Morrison signalled he would cut taxes to stimulate the economy.
Meanwhile, the Reserve Bank of Australia’s (RBA) hinted that it would consider case for a rate cut in June.
"A lower cash rate would support employment growth and bring forward the time when inflation is consistent with the target," RBA governor Philip Lowe said in a speech to the Queensland branch of the Economic Society of Australia in Brisbane.
The minutes of the RBA's May meeting showed members discussed the possibility of a rate cut after the latest data revealed the country’s unemployment started to increase.
"As in the previous meeting, members discussed the scenario where inflation did not move any higher and unemployment trended up, recognising that in those circumstances a decrease in the cash rate would likely be appropriate," the minutes showed.
The U.S. dollar index that tracks the greenback against a basket of other currencies edged up 0.1% to 97.808. While not a directional driver, Federal Reserve chairman Jerome Powell said at the Financial Markets Conference in Florida that rising levels of corporate debt “need watching” but he does not expect it to pose a threat to the financial system.
“Business debt does not present the kind of elevated risks to the stability of the financial system that would lead to broad harm to households and businesses should conditions deteriorate,” Powell said. “At the same time, the level of debt certainly could stress borrowers if the economy weakens.”
Global equities have taken a hit on Monday following increased trade tensions after the White House blacklisted Chinese giant Huawei.
The news raised more uncertainty over how trade negotiations between the U.S. and China will pan out, although news that the U.S. Commerce Department will temporarily allow Huawei to purchase U.S.-made goods for at least 90 days eased the tensions somewhat.
The safe-haven Japanese yen failed to benefit from the news. The USD/JPY pair was up 0.2% to 110.20.


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