The US dollar rose across the board yesterday afternoon as the new chair of the Federal Reserve made some hawkish comments during a congressional testimony. Indeed, Powell’s optimism fuels dollar rally as seen in the 28 February Powell Testimony US Dollar Impact Analysis.
28 February, Swissquote – Jerome Powell revised his assessment of the US economy upward and suggested that the Fed could increase borrowing rates four times this year, compared to three hikes expected by market participants and signaled by the central bank so far.
28 February Powell Testimony US Dollar Impact Analysis
The dollar index broke the 90.0 resistance level and stabilized around 90.45 amid a sharp drop in EUR/USD and a continued rally in USD/CHF. The single currency fell 1% to $1.2220, while the dollar rose to 0.9415 against the Swiss franc. On the equity side, stocks fell across the globe with the S&P 500 sliding 1.27% to 2,744 and the Dow Jones closing at 25,410, down 1.16% on the session.
In the bonds market, US Treasury yields spiked on Powell’s remarks with the 10-year yield hitting 2.92%, while on the short-end of the curve, the 2-year yield printed a fresh 9-year high at 2.28%. We have the feeling that investors don’t know where to stand as the effects of higher borrowing rates will have various implications for the US economy.
Indeed, it could trigger a slowdown in growth as the cost of debt increase, making more difficult for private companies and consumers to borrow money and increasing the debt burden for the government. On the other hand, it will make the dollar more attractive for investors. For now, it seems that the market is still undecided: the greenback is still trading range bound against most of its peers.
European markets closed mixed amid Powell’s testimony and weak February economic data
European markets closed in red territory on Tuesday following a decrease in early trading session and moving in different directions after Powell’s testimony in the afternoon, reinforced by weaker Consumer Confidence and Consumer Price Index data published the same day.
European Euro Stoxx 50 closed at 3’458 (-0.15%), hampered by Real Estate (-1.55%), Materials (-1.35%), Consumer Staples (-1.25%) and Telcos (-0.97%) while supporters were IT (+0.61%) and Financials (+0.56%). European marketplaces followed the same trend, closing at 7’282 (-0.10%) for FTSE 100, 12’491 (-0.29%) DAX, 5’344 (-0.01%) CAC 40, 22’724 (+0.08%) FTSE MIB and 9’900 (-0.02%) IBEX 35.
EUR/USD slightly declined, trading at 1.2234 (-0.67%) following Powell’s speech that gave a real boost to the greenback against all major currencies while GBP/EUR, EUR/CHF and EUR/JPY are trading at 1.1363, 1.1508 and 131.05. European Bond yields gain ground, as the 30-year, 10-year and 2-year are estimated at 1.319 (+1.53%), 0.680 (+4.23%) and -0.521 (+3.08%).
February Consumer confidence in eurozone decreased at 0.10, falling from January 17-year high at 1.40 while German and Spanish Preliminary Consumer Price Index Y/Y were given at 1.40% (consensus: 1.50%) and 1.10% (consensus: 0.90%), showing signs of continuing growth, as uncertainties regarding eurozone reforms, Italian elections and German GroKo are cooling down.
This article 28 February Powell Testimony US Dollar Impact Analysis was written by Arnaud Masset & Vincent Mivelaz, analysts at Swissquote. While every effort has been made to ensure that the data quoted and used for the research behind this document is reliable, there is no guarantee that it is correct, and Swissquote Bank and its subsidiaries can accept no liability whatsoever in respect of any errors or omissions, or regarding the accuracy, completeness or reliability of the information contained herein.
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