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Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell and Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen will testify before Congress on the government’s response to the pandemic. Powell will likely reject inflation concerns and support ongoing accommodation. His prepared remarks echo the messages in the recent rate decision. US ten-year yields have eased to below 1.70% as tension mounts ahead of the event. Apart from Powell, additional FOMC members will be speaking later in the day.
Infrastructure: The White House is reportedly considering a $3 trillion infrastructure plan, coming on top of the $1.9 trillion covid relief project which is under deployment. The plan will be presented to President Joe Biden this week and may be split into two parts, with the second one potentially including tax hikes to fund the spending.
Germany will undergo a strict five-day lockdown around Easter and extend its broader measures through April 18 in order to curb the recent surge in cases. Worries about the resurgence of the virus are growing across the old continent.
Vaccines: One day after AstraZeneca reported promising results, the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases announced that some of the data is outdated, casting fresh doubts on the embattled immunization solution. On the other hand, the British government is working to ease tensions with the EU about the exports of Astra’a doses amid threats of an export ban.
GBP/USD is trading around 1.3850 after the UK released mixed labor figures. The Unemployment Rate surprised with a drop to 5% in January while jobless claims leaped by 86,500 in February. Andrew Bailey, Governor of the Bank of England, will speak later in the day.
NZD/USD is changing hands below 0.71, hit by New Zealand’s decision to curb the increase in house prices. AUD/USD has slipped below 0.77 as the land down under is suffering floods.
The Turkish lira remains under pressure as markets are still worried by the weekend sacking of the central bank governor. USD/TRYis changing hands above 7.77. President Erdogan has said the bank will not take any extraordinary action.
EUR/GBP is looking for a correction higher. Karen Jones, Team Head FICC Technical Analysis Research at Commerzbank, expects the pair to close again above the 20-day moving average at 0.8605 to confirm the move.
“EUR/GBP has registered a triple divergence of the daily RSI, and we continue to suspect a correction higher is likely.”
“A close above the 20-day ma at 0.8605 has been seen, and we would like to see another one to confirm. The intraday Elliott wave counts are more positive, and we favour a correction higher.”
“Rallies would need to clear the recent high at 0.8732 to negate current downside pressure. Only above here would allow for scope for recovery to 0.8864/61 (lows seen in June, September and November), but that is expected to hold the topside.”
The AUD/USD pair weakened further below the 0.7700 mark and dropped to near two-week lows heading into the European session. The pair was last seen trading near the 0.7680-75 region, down around 0.85% for the day.
A rare coordinated move by the US, Canada, UK and EU to impose sanctions on Chinese officials over human rights violations in Xinjiang took its toll on the China-proxy aussie. Apart from this, a softer risk tone provided a modest lift to the safe-haven US dollar and further drove flows away from the perceived riskier Australian dollar.
From a technical perspective, a sustained break below the 0.7700 strong horizontal support was seen as a fresh trigger for bearish traders. This, in turn, might have already set the stage for additional Weakness. The bearish outlook is reinforced by the fact that technical indicators on the daily chart have just started drifting into the negative territory
Hence, a subsequent slide towards monthly swing lows, around the 0.7620 region touched on March 5, now looks a distinct possibility. The latter coincides with the 100-day SMA support, which if broken decisively should pave the way for an extension of the recent sharp pullback from the key 0.8000 psychological mark, or the highest level since February 2018.
The AUD/USD pair might then turn vulnerable to slide further below the 100-day SMA support, around the 0.7600 mark and aim to test the next relevant support near the 0.7530-25 horizontal zone.
On the flip side, any attempted recovery move might now be seen as a selling opportunity and runs the risk of fizzling out rather quickly. Bearish traders would look to enter near the 0.7700 mark and any subsequent move up is more likely to remain capped near the 0.7745-50 supply zone.
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