What you need to know on Monday, March 22:
The American dollar finished the week with modest gains against most major rivals, up on Friday amid persistent yields’ strength. The yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note settled at 1.73%, near the multi-month peak of 1.75% achieved earlier in the week.
The EUR/USD pair hovers around 1.1900, while GBP/USD is around 1.3860, both suffering from coronavirus jitters. Several European countries have seen increases in the number of new contagions, and new restrictive measures have been announced as the EU struggles with vaccine shortage. The UK progresses in vaccine rollout, but Prime Minister Boris Johnson plans to extend the country’s lockdown law until next October. The Coronavirus Act emergency legislation will be discussed in the House of Commons on Thursday.
Commodity-related currencies were pressured by the poor performance of equities, although their declines against the greenback were limited. Gold surged ahead of the weekly close, settling at $1,744 a troy ounce, while crude oil prices also advanced marginally at the end of the week.
US Federal Reserve Chief Jerome Powell will testify before Congress on Tuesday and Wednesday, although after the latest Fed’s announcement, it seems unlikely that his words will have an impact on currencies.