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ForexLive Asia-Pacific news wrap: Covid case in New Zealand sinks NZD – ForexLive


Forex news for Asia-Pacific trading on August 17, 2021:

Markets:

  • JPY leads, NZD lags
  • Nikkei up 0.1%
  • WTI crude oil up 7 cents to $67.36
  • US 10-year yields down 0.7 bps to 1.250%
  • Gold down $2 to $1786

This is the second day in a row that Asia-Pacific trading has sent a shudder down the rest of the world’s spine. The data is softening in China and now Australia and New Zealand have new covid worries.

The tone early was constructive and Japanese stocks joined in the US-led rebound in sentiment but it hasn’t lasted. The RBA minutes showed they discussed not tapering and say that if the situation worsens (hint: it has) they might not taper.

That kicked off some Australian dollar selling that looked like it would be the main feature of the trading session.

But wait, a tape bomb hit NZD with authorities revealing the first locally-transmitted covid case since February. Given that delta looks downright unstoppable, the market isn’t waiting to see what happens next. NZD/USD initially fell 0.3%, then tripled that. It finally got some bids just ahead of 0.6950 from 0.7015 before the news hit.

A number of yen crosses are at perilous levels and today’s sentiment and price action aren’t helping. AUD/JPY broke the July low and that’s not a great sign. The pressure on the loonie and pound so far is moderate but it’s rising by the moment.

UK unemployment and US retail sales are due up next and I wouldn’t want to fight a bad print.

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