Review of the dollar, euro, pound, yen, qiwi and gold prices for December 17, 2020


Today during the Asian session, the EUR / USD pair is actively growing, renewing record highs since April 2018. The instrument is supported by continued optimism in the market, which is no longer subject to significant declines in response to heightened epidemiological risks. Despite the new restrictions imposed by some European countries, such as Germany, investors are optimistic about the start of vaccination campaigns, which many hope will avoid new lockdowns next year. The position of the single currency is also supported by positive macroeconomic statistics from Europe. Thus, the index of business activity in the manufacturing sector of the euro zone in December from Markit rose from 53.8 to 55.5 points with the forecast of a decline to 53 points. The index of business activity in the services sector for the same period increased from 41.7 to 47.3 points, which significantly exceeded market expectations of growth only to 41.9 points. The composite index rose from 45.3 points to 49.8 points, almost reaching the psychological level of 50 points. Investors were counting on a much more modest growth to 45.8 points.


The GBP / USD pair has been significantly strengthening since Tuesday, and today during the Asian session, it is updating record highs since May 2018. Investors are buying the pound, awaiting the conclusion of the long-awaited trade deal between London and Brussels before the end of December this year, when the deadline for the current transition period expires. The day before, the head of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, again announced the path to signing the agreement in the remaining time, but a number of contradictions still persist. In particular, analysts point to the issue of fishing, which remains one of the main unresolved problems. In addition to tracking the process of trade negotiations, British traders are preparing for today’s meeting of the Bank of England on the interest rate. It is expected that the regulator will keep the key rate at the current level of 0.1%, and will do it unanimously. The quantitative easing program is also expected to remain unchanged at £ 895bn.


Today, during the Asian session, the NZD / USD pair is developing bullish dynamics, testing the 0.7140 mark for a breakdown and renewing record highs since April 2018. The growth of the instrument, of course, is largely due to the depreciation of the American currency, but macroeconomic statistics play an important role. Thus, the data on GDP of New Zealand for the third quarter of this year rose by 14% q / q after falling by 11% q / q over the previous period. Analysts were counting on the emergence of positive dynamics, but expected an increase of 13.5% q / q. In annual terms, the country’s economy managed to enter the positive zone, rising by 0.4% y / y after falling by 11.3% y / y in the second quarter. Market forecasts assumed a decline of 1.3% y / y. The focus of investors’ attention on Thursday will be statistics from the US on the dynamics of applications for unemployment benefits. Recently, the indicator has resumed its growth, which serves as additional pressure on the US dollar.


Today, during the Asian session, the USD / JPY pair is declining, developing the bearish momentum that formed at the end of last week. Now the instrument is testing the level of 103.30 for a breakdown downward and updating local minimums since November 9. Yesterday’s macroeconomic statistics from the US turned out to be ambiguous and could not provide any support to the dollar. Thus, the PMI Markit index in the manufacturing sector fell from 56.7 to 56.5 points, which, however, turned out to be significantly better than market expectations of 55.7 points. At the same time, the activity index in the services sector fell from 58.4 to 55.3 points, while forecasts assumed a decrease only to 55.9 points.


Today, during the Asian session, gold prices are growing slightly, updating local highs since December 9. The instrument is still supported by expectations of new stimulus measures for the American economy, which are now being actively discussed in the Senate. Information appeared in the media that legislators have made significant progress in this matter, since this is facilitated by the difficult epidemiological situation in the country. In addition, the demand for safe assets is supported by the Fed’s soft position on monetary policy and its immediate prospects. In turn, optimism about COVID-19 vaccines is positively affecting the dollar. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has already approved the emergency use of Pfizer’s drug, and Moderna Inc. is expected to approve the vaccine by the end of the week.

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