Oct 15 (Reuters) – The dollar gained broadly, reclaiming safe-haven status on investor concerns about diminishing chances of coronavirus relief as the pandemic intensifies in Europe and parts of the U.S.
A surprise rise in U.S. jobless claims also weighed on sentiment, especially as data from California, the most populous state, was suspended for two weeks.
Safe-haven buying sent the dollar index to its highest in over a week and the EUR/USD to its lowest since September 30.
Expanding Europe pandemic restrictions, the threat of a disruptive no-deal Brexit , potential sticking points in the passage of the EU’s euro-supportive recovery package and a still bulky IMM spec long position kept downward pressure on EUR/USD.
EUR/USD was on track to close below 1.1700, which would raise the risk of a slide to September’s 1.16125 low on EBS , near the daily cloud base and 100-day moving average support.
Sterling surrendered Wednesday’s gains as the Brexit risk pendulum swung against it, on top of daunting pandemic lockdowns and an ONS report showing 9.1% of the workforce remained furloughed with less than a month until the government’s job retention program ends .
Cable held above Wednesday’s 1.2865 low, but cloud support is beginning to whither , with the 100-day moving average at 1.2831 looking pivotal.
AUD/USD fell over 1% after diving to new October lows and below the 100-DMA after RBA Governor Philip Lowe telegraphed more easing at the Nov. 3 policy meeting .
The aussie was stuck right on the 100-day moving average in late-U.S. trade. A close below would bring September lows into play.
Stocks in Europe were hit harder than the U.S. due to the greater pandemic impairment concerns. U.S. equity market bulls appear to be following the logic that discretion is the better part of valor so close to record highs and with so much uncertainty afoot.
Ten-year Treasury yields rebounded from early risk-off losses, perhaps looking beyond the lack of pre-election fiscal relief to the likelihood of more spending afterward and the need to price in both that added supply and the firmer economic outlook it implies.
Metals and oil were slightly softer due to the stronger dollar, but continuing demand from China tended to underpin copper, despite pandemic lockdown worries.
The focus Friday will be on U.S. September retail sales and industrial production.
Also of note will be the conclusion of the European Council meeting and implications for Brexit and the EU’s recovery package.
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(Editing by Burton Frierson Randolph Donney is a Reuters market analyst. The views expressed are his own.)
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