Forex Today: Dollar dives despite disease, deteriorating US-Sino relations, gold glitters, data eyed

Here is what you need to know on Thursday, July 23:

Markets have remained calm and the dollar has been extending its decline, shrugging off rising coronavirus figures and escalating Sino-American tensions. Investors find solace in progress toward US fiscal stimulus and jobless claims are eyed.

Washington has closed China’s consulate in Huston, amid official allegations of Intellectual Property violations – and unofficial accusations of spying. Beijing vowed to retaliate, potentially by shuttering US consulates in Wuhan or Chengdu. Hu Xijin, the editor of the Global Times, threatened “pain.”

Both countries are also at odds over Huawei’s technology, Hong Kong’s status, and other topics. Investors seem to mind only about the Phase One trade deal which remains intact.

US coronavirus cases continue rising at a rapid pace of nearly 70,000 per day and over 1,100 deaths were recorded, the highest since May. President Donald Trump’s shift to address the disease may take time to have an impact.

COVID-19 cases are also rising in other places, with Tokyo hitting a record 300 infections per day. Hong Kong and Spain are also dealing with outbreaks while most new cases are in Latin America.

US lawmakers have been making progress on the next fiscal stimulus bill, with Republicans seeming open to drop the demand for a payroll tax cut and Democrats warming up to smaller federal unemployment benefits – with the current program set to expire at the end of the month.

Trump said additional further agents to cities suffering from rising crime levels, attempting to improve his standing in opinion polls. Recent surveys have been showing the incumbent may be narrowing the gap with challenger Joe Biden.

Update on America’s labor market is due out on Thursday with initial jobless claims – for the week when also Non-Farm Payrolls surveys are held – are forecast to hold at 1.3 million while continuing claims carry expectations for a decrease toward 17 million.

See Jobless Claims Preview: Improvement stalls and worry returns

The US reported a small decline of 0.3% in the official House Price Index in May while existing home sales bounced to an annualized level of 4.72 million in June.

See US Existing Home Sales Soar: Housing market metrics improve

Gold glitters, dollar down

Gold is trading around $1,870, giving little ground after hitting a pea above $1,876 – the highest since 2011. The precious metal is benefiting from monetary and fiscal stimulus. Silver has also surged, catching up with gold and benefiting from potentially higher demand from usages in environmentally friendly technologies.

EUR/USD is maintaining only a short distance from the 1.16 level after flirting with it on Wednesday. The common currency remains underpinned by the EU accord on the €750 billion recovery fund agreed early in the week.

GBP/USD is trading above 1.27, shrugging off reports that the UK may abandon Brexit talks and criticism on the government’s preparation and handling of the coronavirus crisis. Prime Minister Boris Johnson visits Scotland on Thursday. The PM canceled Britain’s extradition treaty with Hong Kong earlier this week, angering China. Beijing has also been angered by London’s decision to fade out the usage of Huawei.

AUD/USD holds up around 0.7150, benefiting from the upbeat mood and shrugging off comments by Australia’s Treasurer Josh Frydenberg warning about the largest deficit since World War II.

USD/CAD is trading around 1.34 as WTI Oil has been edging higher to around $42, shrugging off a large increase of 4.9 million in US inventories.

Cryptocurrencies have been consolidating their gains, with Bitcoin hovering around $9,500.


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