(MENAFN - Daily Forex)
- U.S. stock markets mostly held firm, while Asian markets traded higher today.
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- Australian CPI (inflation) data was released which came in at an annualized rate of 1.1%, considerably lower than had been expected at 1.4%. This calls into question the prospect of tighter monetary policy in Australia held out by the RBA and has weakened the Aussie somewhat, especially against the USD.
- In the Forex market, the U.S. dollar is gaining ground over the short term everywhere, with the yen showing the most short-term weakness.
- The Federal Reserve will later today release its FOMC Statement and Federal Funds Rate. This is typically the most important monthly event in the Forex calendar.
- Yesterday's release of U.S. CB consumer confidence data came in considerably higher than had been expected, suggesting strong consumer demand in the U.S. economy. Long-term inflation expectations in the U.S. as measured by bond markets hit an 8-year high.
- Friday saw an all-time record high number of confirmed daily new coronavirus cases globally, due mainly to increasing rates of infection in India and Latin America. The situation is especially bad in India which is seeing explosive growth in infection and an exponential rise in case numbers to new highs, which is putting a severe strain on the Indian health care system due to a shortage of oxygen. Many analysts believe the death toll in India is significantly underestimated. There are fears of mutations arising in India which would be resistant to current vaccines.
- Global coronavirus deaths increased last week for the sixth week running after falling for months, signifying a rebound in the pandemic in areas where vaccinations are relatively absent. Daily deaths are approaching the peak made last January.
- Total confirmed new coronavirus cases worldwide stand at over 149.3 million with an average case fatality rate of 2.11%.
- The fastest progression in terms of immunizing a population against the coronavirus in all but the smallest states has been in Israel, which has given at least one shot to 62% of its entire population followed by the U.A.E. at 51%. For most of the world, a vaccine remains distant. However the pace of vaccination has finally begun to significantly speed up in the European Union, which now has immunized 22% of its population.
- The rate of new coronavirus infections appears to now be increasing most quickly in Afghanistan, Argentina, the Bahamas, Cambodia, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Cyprus, Egypt, Georgia, India, Iraq, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Laos, Lithuania, Malaysia, Netherlands, Nepal, Oman, Paraguay, Saudi Arabia, Sri Lanka, Trinidad, Tunisia, and Uzbekistan.
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