US Dollar Sentiments Sends Asia-Pacific Markets Facing A Risk-Off


The USD’s Friday surge has sent the Asia-Pacific market under pressure, and their sentiment may suffer from Friday’s steep selloff on Wall Street. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) fell 1.62% last Friday, closing the week out with a 4% drop. The UK Gilt yields also surged after news of a government package of tax cuts and other expansionary measures, causing traders to sell off risk assets. The British Pound fell to its lowest level since 1985 against the USD. 

Gold was steady last week until Friday, with prices dwindling by over 1%. 

Though good news for the United States, the USD dominance in the market is seriously negatively impacting Asian currencies. The Japanese Yen and Chinese Yuan have been persistently sinking against the greenback and are currently threatening to produce another regional financial crisis.

The Bank of Japan Governor Haruhiko Kuroda is due to speak today as the JPY level remains a prime focus for market participants. A move above 144 for USD/JPY is likely to attract immediate attention, with the 145 level being the current pain threshold for the Ministry of Finance (MoF).

The Chinese Yuan might remain subject to a rising Dollar this week. The People’s Bank of China (PBOC) has attempted to slow USD/CNH’s ascent through its daily reference rate fixing operations, which are likely to continue (albeit with limited effect, if the recent past is any indication).

The South African Rand is in focus as the country grapples with another round of power cuts. The country’s energy supplier stated that national grid outages should be expected until Thursday. USD/ZAR rose for a fourth week, bringing prices within 0.5% from the psychologically important 18.00 level.

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