Most of the world currency markets are brimming with speculation over US Congress election results and QE2 grabbing the most attention. While the US dollar was unable to sustain its gains from the previous session Thursday morning, coming under pressure ahead of the latest word on the US jobs market, the euro on the other hand snapped back against the dollar on Thursday, as better-than-forecast economic data from the Euro zone raised speculation that central bankers in Brussels will begin to normalize interest rates rather than ease further. The mid-term election results are likely to be overshadowed by the FOMC where speculation that the Fed will announce USD500bn of asset purchases Wednesday has intensified, but analysts at BNP Paribas believe that with investors increasingly expecting a month-by-month approach to the implementation, a more gradual approach would be consistent with the G20 meeting, where negotiations appear to be ongoing.
Next direction of USD?
USD: The dollar has been unable to sustain its gains from the previous session coming under modest pressure ahead of the latest word on the US jobs market. The Fed meets today, November 3, and is reportedly set to embark on a series of gradual asset purchases totaling a few "hundred billion" dollars. In 2009, the Fed snapped up around $2 trillion in an effort to spur the economy. Still, currency experts feel that the dollar is relatively stable amid growing speculation that the size and scope of the Federal Reserve's anticipated bond purchase program is likely to be smaller than its first round of quantitative easing. Certain analysts and economists believe QE2 may contribute, at the cost of bringing down the USD almost 20% over a period of time, to triggering US exports and helping the economy etc. even though it will cause a disaster to the world currency status of the USD. While this may be gradual, the scene does not look very likely. We believe the USD may remain strong.
US Data Analysis: Initial US jobless claims fell to 434,000 from the previous week's revised figure of 455,000. The decrease surprised economists, who had expected claims to edge up to 458,000 from the 452,000 originally reported for the previous week. While there were no special factors cited for the decline in claims, analysts at Deutsche Bank are hesitant to read too much into the data, and the four-week moving average is still consistent with job growth of around 100k per month. Continuing claims registered a more robust decline of 122k to 4356k for the week of October 16, the lowest since November 22, 2008.
Correlating Currencies and Inflation: Although the Fed appears to have succeeded in stabilizing market implied inflation expectations higher, this has been accompanied by a markedly weaker US dollar in recent times. Faced with a strong disinflationary trend, it seems that the Fed would want to keep inflationary expectations anchored at higher levels, but there are concerns that once deflationary expectations get entrenched, consumers postpone their consumption plans while businesses refrain from investing. Moreover, given the side-effect of the weaker dollar, the Fed’s strategy has run into international resistance with the G20 statement noting “advanced economies with reserve currencies” promoting excessively volatile capital flows.
ETFs Investment Options For The US Dollar include:
PowerShares DB USD Index (NYSEARCA:UDN): The Index is a rules-based index composed solely of short USDX futures contracts. The USDX futures contract is designed to replicate the performance of being short the US Dollar against the following currencies: Euro, Japanese Yen, British Pound, Canadian Dollar, Swedish Krona and Swiss Franc.
Expense Ratio: 0.40%
PowerShares DB USD Index Bullish (NYSEARCA:UUP): The Index is a rules-based index composed solely of long USDX futures contracts. The USDX futures contract is designed to replicate the performance of being long the US Dollar against the following currencies: Euro, Japanese Yen, British Pound, Canadian Dollar, Swedish Krona and Swiss Franc.
Expense Ratio: 0.50%
EUR: The euro, meanwhile, snapped back against the dollar after better than forecast economic data from the Eurozone raised speculation that central bankers in Brussels will begin to normalize interest rates rather than ease further. Economic confidence in the 16 countries that use the euro rose to its highest level in nearly three years during October, the European Commission said on Thursday. The euro rose to $1.3910 versus the greenback, paring most of this week's losses. With the advance, the euro moved back towards a recent 8-month high near $1.4150.
EUR Data Analysis: The European Central Bank lowered interest rates to a record low one percent during the throes of the worst recession in decades, but has resisted additional rate cuts despite a sluggish economy. Analysts at Deutsche Bank have meanwhile suggested that the euro is still in a correction mode and may remain so while the EU summit is in session. Good support entered yesterday only at 1.3610.
Euro ETFs To Watch Out For:
Rydex CurrencyShares Euro Currency Trust (NYSEARCA:FXE): The EUR/USD exchange rate is a foreign exchange spot rate that measures the relative values of two currencies, the euro and the U.S. dollar.
FXE Tracks: Euro Index. Expense Ratio: 0.40%
Short Euro ETFs
ProShares UltraShort Euro (NYSEARCA:EUO): ProShares UltraShort Euro seeks daily investment results, before fees and expenses, that correspond to twice (200%) the inverse (opposite) of the daily performance of the U.S. Dollar price of the Euro.
EUO Tracks: Euro (-200%) Index. Expense Ratio: 0.95%
Market Vectors-Double Short Euro ETN (NYSEARCA:DRR): As the Index is two-times leveraged, for every 1% weakening of the euro relative to the U.S. dollar, the level of the Index will generally increase by 2%, while for every 1% strengthening of the euro relative to the U.S. dollar, the Index will generally decrease by 2%.
DRR Tracks: Double Short Euro Index. Expense Ratio: 0.65%
Long Euro ETFs
ProShares Ultra Euro (NYSEARCA:ULE): ProShares Ultra Euro seeks daily investment results, before fees and expenses, that correspond to twice (200%) the U.S. Dollar price of the Euro.
ULE Tracks: Euro (200%) Index. Expense Ratio: 0.95%
Market Vectors-Double Long Euro ETN (NYSEARCA:URR): As the Index is two-times leveraged, for every 1% strengthening of the euro relative to the U.S. dollar, the level of the Index will generally increase by 2%, while for every 1% weakening of the euro relative to the U.S. dollar, the Index will generally decrease by 2%.
URR Tracks: Double Long Euro Index. Expense Ratio: 0.65%
Disclosure: No positions