Currency Analyst since 2010

USD: forecast for December 14-20

By Elizabeth Belugina

US dollar was rather weak during the past week. Traders and speculators have been obviously adjusting their positions ahead of the Federal Reserve’s meeting and the year-end.

The greenback did strengthen though versus commodity currencies, especially Canadian dollar, as oil prices renewed multiyear minimums still affected by OPEC decision not to cut production. Still, other central banks – the Swiss National Bank and the Reserve Bank of New Zealand – didn’t ease policy and it helped their currencies to hold ground versus the US dollar. As a result, the US dollar index, which was rejected down from the key 100.00 area, slid to the levels just above 97.00.  

The long-awaited Fed’s meeting will finally take place next week on Wednesday. The market is now quite sure that the US central bank will deliver a rate hike. According to the Fed fund futures, the possibility of the Federal Reserve raising rates this month accounts for 85%.

It seems likely that the Fed’s meeting won’t give the US dollar much strength as the process of monetary tightening in the US will likely be slow and gradual. American regulator will try to make policy tightening as painless for the economy as possible. At the same time, the risks of a squeeze down in USD on a dovish Fed have reduced as well: firstly, the positioning is less long on USD, and, secondly, the Fed probably won’t express that big concerns about how expensive the greenback is. All in all, there are chances that the market’s reaction to the Fed’s rate decision will be rather calm. Other important economic releases can be seen in our economic calendar. 


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