The risk of more downside in USDJPY remain high on implications of BoJ major policy shift
FX market continues to digest BOJ’s hawkish surprise yesterday, USDJPY volatility remains elevated. The market reaction to the shocking move of the Bank of Japan delivered a crushing blow to JGB demand resulting in a massive dump of Japanese bonds by investors. In turn, this effect caused the yen to strengthen by more than 4% against the dollar. Today, the speculative demand for the yen declined and USDJPY rebounded from 130.50 to 132.5. Nevertheless, the risk of a new decline remains high for the simple reason that the policy of the Bank of Japan has the groundwork for a radical change, namely the transition to the gradual withdrawal of monetary stimulus. The current rebound may run out of steam at the level of 1.33-1.3350, after which downside may resume:
The Conference Board releases US consumer confidence data today, also the report on existing home sales is due.
The US data calendar for the second half of the week includes Personal Income, Personal Goods and Durable Goods Orders for November (December 23), and the Dallas and Richmond Fed Manufacturing indices for December 27-28. There are currently no scheduled speeches by Fed officials until release of the Fed minutes on Jan. 4. However, it is unlikely that this data will induce major moves in the low-volatility environment during the holiday period. Current major drivers of sentiment will likely be news from China and about the energy crisis. In China, a growing number of anecdotal reports suggest that the actual death toll could be significantly higher than reported: if supported by more evidence, markets may increasingly doubt the sustainability of China’s COVID-19 zero exit path with negative implications for yuan, Asian EMFX and currencies sensitive to global business cycle.
On the energy side, a potential Russian response to EU gas price caps, a possible re-escalation of the conflict in Ukraine, and news about the weather (which has been a key driver of gas prices recently) could have implications for the foreign exchange market. From this point of view, European currencies continue to look quite vulnerable.
The dollar index is likely to close the year at current levels. In line with its seasonal trend, December was a weak month for the dollar. However, already in January, seasonality can become a positive factor for the dollar as the US currency rallied in January in four previous years.
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