- The DXY index surged, trading with gains above the 200-day SMA at 103.70.
- Growing tensions between Israel and Hamas made investors seek refuge in the USD.
- Key US economic reports due this week: ISM Services PMI, ADP Employment Change, November Nonfarm Payrolls and the Unemployment Rate.
The US Dollar (USD) edged higher on Monday, with the Dollar Index (DXY) sailing past the 103.70 mark, above the 200-day Simple Moving Average (SMA) and pushing a sour market mood amid rising Treasury yields.
For the rest of the week, key drivers are on the horizon as investors eye Friday’s release of Nonfarm Payrolls for November alongside the Unemployment Rate, while the ISM Services PMI is due on Tuesday and the Automatic Data Processing (ADP) Employment Change report on Wednesday.
Despite mixed signals from the US labour market and cooling inflation in the United States economy, Federal Reserve (Fed) officials indicated a possibility for further policy tightening, signifying a subtly hawkish stance. This week’s key labour market data will influence the modelling of expectations and the Fed’s policy trajectory, which could define the short-term trajectory of the US Dollar.
Daily Market Movers: US Dollar on the rise ahead of labor market data
- The US Dollar is currently trading with gains, with the DXY Index showing a positive upward trend neatly tucked above 103.70.
- The US Dollar’s upward trend appears largely driven by a sour market mood and rising bond yields.
- No significant reports have surfaced during the session that could impact the US Dollar’s current trajectory.
- Market participants have their eyes set on key economic reports due this week. On the list are the Nonfarm Payrolls, the Unemployment Rate, ADP Employment Change and the ISM Services PMI updates, scheduled for release on Friday, Wednesday and Tuesday, respectively.
- Overall, all reports are expected to show that the job creation picked up in November, while the ISM Services PMI is seen accelerating regarding its last reading of October.
- US bond yields are edging higher, aligning with the Dollar’s uptick. Specifically, the 2, 5 and 10-year yield rates are up, trading at 4.65%, 4.24%, and 4.29%, respectively.
- The CME FedWatch Tool indicates no hikes are priced in for the upcoming December meeting, and markets speculate on rate cuts in mid-2024.
Technical Analysis: US Dollar struggles amid negative territory RSI and subdued SMAs
The indicators on the daily chart are reflecting a predominance of selling momentum. The index position, below the 20 and 100-day Simple Moving Averages (SMAs), indicates that the bears are maintaining control. This control is also noticeable from the Relative Strength Index (RSI), which shows a positive slope but remains in negative territory. This reveals that although buyers are gaining some strength, they are yet to overpower the sellers.
Meanwhile, the Moving Average Convergence Divergence (MACD) signifies decreasing red bars, adding further evidence of shrinking selling momentum. This deceleration is credited to the bears taking a breather after driving the index to its lowest level since last August.
Support levels: 103.60, 103.30, 103.15, 103.00.
Resistance levels: 104.10 (20-day SMA), 104.40 (100-day SMA), 104.50.
Inflation measures the rise in the price of a representative basket of goods and services. Headline inflation is usually expressed as a percentage change on a month-on-month (MoM) and year-on-year (YoY) basis. Core inflation excludes more volatile elements such as food and fuel which can fluctuate because of geopolitical and seasonal factors. Core inflation is the figure economists focus on and is the level targeted by central banks, which are mandated to keep inflation at a manageable level, usually around 2%.
The Consumer Price Index (CPI) measures the change in prices of a basket of goods and services over a period of time. It is usually expressed as a percentage change on a month-on-month (MoM) and year-on-year (YoY) basis. Core CPI is the figure targeted by central banks as it excludes volatile food and fuel inputs. When Core CPI rises above 2% it usually results in higher interest rates and vice versa when it falls below 2%. Since higher interest rates are positive for a currency, higher inflation usually results in a stronger currency. The opposite is true when inflation falls.
Although it may seem counter-intuitive, high inflation in a country pushes up the value of its currency and vice versa for lower inflation. This is because the central bank will normally raise interest rates to combat the higher inflation, which attract more global capital inflows from investors looking for a lucrative place to park their money.
Formerly, Gold was the asset investors turned to in times of high inflation because it preserved its value, and whilst investors will often still buy Gold for its safe-haven properties in times of extreme market turmoil, this is not the case most of the time. This is because when inflation is high, central banks will put up interest rates to combat it.
Higher interest rates are negative for Gold because they increase the opportunity-cost of holding Gold vis-a-vis an interest-bearing asset or placing the money in a cash deposit account. On the flipside, lower inflation tends to be positive for Gold as it brings interest rates down, making the bright metal a more viable investment alternative.