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gamesindustryblog.com April 24, 2017


Protectionism worry drags on stocks, dollar hits 6-week low

22 March 2017, 12:44 | Ignacio Smith

US Dollar Bonds 10 Year Yield

Mar192017ed1

The ringgit opened higher against the U.S. dollar again this morning as the greenback remained under pressure after a hawkish stance by the Federal Reserve on interest rate increases.

Group of 20 financial leaders at a meeting expressed renewed concern about the United States' global trade relations and by implication the Trump administration's concern over the strong USA dollar.

As the US economy continues to show signs of strength, Chicago Federal Reserve President Charles Evans on Monday said four rate rises from the central bank this year isn't totally out of the realm of possibility.

The net impact to the U.S. Dollar price action has been even-more weakness, as DXY fell-below the psychological level of 100.00.

Although Trump promised in early February to deliver a "phenomenal" tax plan within a few weeks, no such details have been released yet, with many investors now waiting for detailed budget plan expected in mid-May.

"It's follow-through and a hangover from last week - the concept of a dovish Fed", said Brad Bechtel, managing director at Jefferies in NY. With inflation on the rise some MPC members believe that a rate hike would be needed sooner than later, but how many MPC members will join Ms. Forbes remains uncertain. Treasury notes to a two-week low of 2.472 percent.

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Gold prices had been suffering in the lead-up to the Fed meeting, with expectations high that multiple interest rate hikes were incoming.

Interest rates have been at historic lows for the past 10 years so a quarter percent increase isn't too much to worry about.

The ringgit, meanwhile, was traded lower against other major currencies.

The euro ticked up to $1.0758, near Friday's six-week high of $1.07825, maintaining its gains made last week after a election defeat for Dutch far-right leader Geert Wilders, which eased broader fears of a populist drift in European politics.

Although the Dutch election is over, there are still geopolitical risks in the European Union and the attention is now focused on the French presidential polls. However, given the slow progress in implementing tax cuts and infrastructure spending plans, markets will soon realize that they are ahead of themselves and I'm still quite confident that USA protectionist policies will do more harm than good. It has risen 2.0 percent since the Fed's policy meeting last week.

The Australian dollar traded at $0.7706, after hitting a 4-1/2-month high of $0.7748 on Monday. Oil prices fell as investors continue to grapple with worries about growing US oil output and high inventories.



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