Markets Continue to Trade Sideways Ahead of FOMC Minutes and Jackson Hole

Xe Corporate APAC

August 20, 2019 3 min read

The AUDUSD opens at 0.6777 (mid-rate) and the NZDUSD opens at 0.6419 (mid-rate) this morning.

Markets continue to trade sideways with investors reluctant to add to their positions ahead of tomorrow morning’s FOMC minutes and the annual meeting of global central bankers at Jackson Hole.

Investors will look to tomorrow morning’s FOMC minutes for clues as to how aggressively the Fed are likely to cut rates, after Fed Chair Jerome Powell described the July rate cut as not "the beginning of a lengthy cutting cycle" during the post meeting Q&A.

In Australia, there was little reaction to yesterday’s RBA minutes with the Reserve Bank confirming that they would consider further monetary easing if needed to underpin sustainable growth and inflation. Members also judged it reasonable to expect that an extended period of low interest rates would be required to make sustained progress towards full employment and their inflation target.

In New Zealand, this morning's global dairy trade auction resulted in another slight fall in both volume and milk powder prices with the overall index dipping by 0.2%. A total of 34,410 tonnes were sold under the hammer at an average selling price of $3,255 per tonne. The result was better than expected with the futures pointing to a 2.0% fall following on from a 2.6% fall in prices at the previous auction a fortnight ago.

Political uncertainty is weighing on both the Euro and European equity markets with Italy's Prime Minister Giueseppe Conte announcing he stepping down after Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini pushed for a no-confidence vote. In a passing shot Conte said Salvini's decision could bring about institutional and financial uncertainty for Italy.

Global equity are marginally lower - Dow -0.41%, S&P 500 -0.42%, FTSE -0.90%, DAX -0.55%, CAC -0.50%, Nikkei +0.55%, Shanghai -0.11%.

Gold prices are inching higher, up  0.5% trading at $1,506 an ounce. WTI Crude Oil prices are little changed trading at $56.22 a barrel.

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Mid-Market Rates

AUDUSD0.67770.2%NZDUSD0.64190.2%AUDEUR0.61050.0%NZDEUR0.57820.1%AUDGBP0.5568-0.1%NZDGBP0.52750.0%AUDJPY72.03-0.2%NZDJPY68.22-0.2%AUDNZD1.05580.0%NZDAUD0.94720.0%GBPAUD1.79600.3%NZDCAD0.85490.1% GBPNZD1.89570.0%
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