US labour-market data was strong and markets continued to fret over inflation pressures.

US labour-market data was strong and markets continued to fret over inflation pressures. There was further speculation over a faster pace of Federal Reserve policy tightening.

US bond yields moved higher on the day before fading slightly on Thursday. Wall Street equities were little changed with sentiment holding firm despite concerns over higher interest rates.

Euro-zone assets were hampered by on-going coronavirus unease while Asian equities were again mixed. The dollar maintained a strong tone with fresh 16-month highs for the index. USD/JPY strengthened to fresh 4-year highs. EUR/USD dipped to fresh 16-month lows below 1.1200 before recovering slightly. Sterling was little changed with GBP/USD posting fresh 2021 lows near 1.3320 before a slight recovery.

Commodity currencies weakened overall, although the Canadian dollar was resilient.

The German IFO business confidence index declined to 96.5 for November from 97.7 the previous month and marginally below consensus forecasts. There was a limited decline in the current conditions index with a similar drop in the expectations index. The IFO commented that the recent drop in confidence is a cause for concern. It added that supply chain bottlenecks are placing companies under a lot of stress with no prospect of a short-term change and that the vast majority of companies want to raise prices. The Euro remained under pressure ahead of the New York open with further concerns over coronavirus developments.

US initial jobless claims declined sharply to a 19-month low of 199,000 in the latest week from a revised 270,000 and well below consensus forecasts of 260,000.

Durable goods orders declined 0.5% for October after a 0.4% retreat the previous month with a 0.5% increase in underlying orders.

The Euro dipped further following the jobless claims data with fresh 16-month EUR/USD lows below the 1.1200 level as the dollar posted further net gains across the board.

The core PCE prices index increased 0.4% for November after a 0.2% increase the previous month. The annual rate increased to 4.1% from 3.7% and the highest reading since February 1991, although this was in line with market expectations which dampened the impact.

San Francisco Fed President Daly stated that there was a case for accelerating the tapering of bond purchases, maintaining speculation that there would be a shift in the bank stance. The Euro attempted to recover, but remained firmly on the defensive amid dollar strength.

Market conditions are liable to be subdued on Thursday with the US Thanksgiving Holiday and EUR/USD secured a slight recovery to near 1.1215 on Thursday.

The US goods trade deficit narrowed to $82.9bn for October from $97.0bn the previous month and well below expectations of $95.0bn with a sharp recovery in exports for the month. The trade data curbed concerns that the dollar would be undermined by concerns over wide trade and budget deficits.

There were renewed losses for Treasuries during the day with the 10-year yield increasing to around 1.68%. The yen was able to secure only limited support on the crosses and USD/JPY posted fresh 4-year highs around 115.40 after the US data releases with resistance on approach to 115.50.

According to minutes from the November meeting, Federal Reserve members considered that inflationary pressures could take longer to subside than expected previously and that some participants were already pushing for a faster pace of tapering. Several members emphasises that interest rates should be increased sooner than expected if inflation continues to run high, but staff continued to see growth risks to the downside. The overall rhetoric was relatively hawkish.

There was no further increase in US yields with subdued conditions in Asia as USD/JPY consolidated around 115.40 with EUR/JPY around 129.40.

The UK CBI industrial trends index strengthened to 26 for November from 9 the previous month, comfortably above consensus forecasts of 18 and the strongest reading since 1977. Exports posted their strongest reading since March 2019 and stock levels were very low while prices increased at the fastest rate since 1977 which will maintain underlying concerns over inflation pressures. Sterling was unable to secure a boost from the data and was also hurt by the strong dollar.

Bank of England MPC member Tenreyro stated that interest rates were likely to increase in the medium term, but she declined to put a more precise timeframe on the potential timing of an increase. She added that she would not comment on the specific potential for a hike in December or February, but was generally cautious.

GBP/USD dipped to fresh 2021 lows around 1.3320 while GBP/EUR held close to 1.1900.

There were reservations surrounding Brexit developments with the two sides still seeing substantial differences over the Northern Ireland protocol, although there was also some positive rhetoric.

Economic Calendar

07:00Germany GDP (Y/Y)2.50%2.50%
07:00German GfK Consumer Confidence (DEC)-0.51
07:00Germany GDP (Q/Q)1.80%2.00%
23:50JPY Buying Foreign Bonds456.3B
23:50JPY Buying Foreign Stocks164.9B

*All rates shown are indicative of interbank rates and should only be used for indication purposes only. It is important to note that foreign exchange rates fluctuate and that rates may vary depending on the amount and the base currency that is purchased or sold. Rates are correct as of 8:00am UK time. CentralFX are not responsible for the rates shown.