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Yellen Says March Hike ‘Likely Appropriate’ If Progress Persists

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Janet Yellen
  • Yellen Says March Hike ‘Likely Appropriate’ If Progress Persists

Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen capped a week of rising expectations about an imminent interest-rate increase by explicitly supporting a hike in mid-March if U.S. economic progress persists.

“At our meeting later this month, the Committee will evaluate whether employment and inflation are continuing to evolve in line with our expectations, in which case a further adjustment of the federal funds rate would likely be appropriate,” Yellen said in the text of a speech Friday at the Executives’ Club of Chicago.

The Fed will announce whether it’s raising rates on March 15 following a two-day meeting in Washington. A March 10 employment report is the most significant data standing between officials and decision day, and economists expect a solid 190,000 payrolls gain in February. The central bank will get a Consumer Price Index inflation reading March 15, but won’t get another look at its preferred inflation index until March 31.

Markets see a better than 90 percent chance of a rate hike this month, up from just 40 percent a week ago, after top Fed officials including New York Fed President William Dudley and Governor Lael Brainard signaled they’re willing to lift rates soon. Inflation and employment data have been meeting policy makers’ expectations, and growth abroad is either stable or slowly improving, clearing the way for gradual increases.

“I currently see no evidence that the Federal Reserve has fallen behind the curve, and I therefore continue to have confidence in our judgment that a gradual removal of accommodation is likely to be appropriate,” Yellen said Friday. However, “unless unanticipated developments adversely affect the economic outlook, the process of scaling back accommodation likely will not be as slow as it was during the past couple of years.”

Fed Vice Chairman Stanley Fischer, speaking in New York on Friday, gave his own roundabout endorsement of a March hike. He said that if there’s a “conscious effort” to boost rate expectations, “I’m about to join it,” and he “strongly” supports the views given by a number of Federal Open Market Committee members.

“There is almost no economic indicator that has come in badly in the last three months,” Fischer said at a forum hosted by the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business.

The reaction in bonds and stocks to Yellen and Fischer was muted. The yield on two-year U.S. Treasury notes, was little changed at about 1.33 percent at 1:31 p.m. in New York. The S&P 500 Index of stocks declined less than two points to about 2,379.

Three Hikes

At the start of 2016, central bankers expected to make four rate increases, but a slump in first-quarter economic data and market volatility coming from abroad kept them on hold until December, when they squeezed in their one and only hike. That followed a single increase in 2015.

Lifting the benchmark rate this month would leave the Fed well-positioned to achieve the three 2017 hikes that officials expected in December, when they released their latest Summary of Economic Projections. They will publish new estimates following this month’s meeting.

Data suggest the central bank is closing in on its two goals: stable inflation near 2 percent and maximum employment. The Fed’s preferred inflation gauge has moved up to 1.9 percent, though that partly owes to volatile oil prices and part of the move could prove transitory.

Unemployment has fallen to 4.8 percent, roughly in line with the level the Fed views as sustainable over the longer term. What’s more, some wage measures are showing nascent signs of life, an indication that labor markets are tightening.

Perhaps the largest difference from last year is that as the U.S. economy makes strides, fewer risks loom on the global economic horizon to scare Fed officials off of raising rates.

“On the whole, the prospects for further moderate economic growth look encouraging, particularly as risks emanating from abroad appear to have receded somewhat,” Yellen said in her prepared remarks. “The Committee currently assesses that the risks to the outlook are roughly balanced.”

Fed officials have expressed a preference for waiting until rate hikes are well under way before beginning to shrink their $4.5 trillion balance sheet, which grew during three rounds of asset purchases following the latest recession. Central bankers aren’t exactly sure how shrinking the balance sheet will affect financial conditions, as several have expressed a preference for allowing securities to roll off gradually as they mature.

Yellen reiterated support for that policy in the footnotes of her speech Friday. “We have said that we expect to maintain this policy until normalization of the level of the federal funds rate is well under way,” she said. “When it becomes appropriate to reduce the size of our balance sheet” that will be done primarily by letting maturing assets run off.

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and Investing.com, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.

US Dollar

Dollar Drops as Traders Prepare for Inflation Data

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Forex Weekly Outlook October 31-November 4

The dollar slipped on Monday towards a three-week low as Treasury yields traded near recent lows and traders awaited crucial U.S. inflation and retail sales data in coming days.

Elsewhere, it was a quiet start to a data-heavy week for foreign exchange markets. The euro climbed back above $1.19 while the British pound rebounded from a two-month low.

The dollar’s performance has been tied to U.S. Treasury yields for most of 2021, after concern about rising inflation in the United States and a stimulus-fueled economic rebound triggered a jump in Treasury yields in February.

A fall in U.S. yields last week triggered the worst week for the dollar in 2021. With yields inching lower on Monday, it was back under pressure.

Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said in a U.S. media interview released on Sunday that the U.S. economy was at “an inflection point” and looked set for a strong rebound in the coming months, but he also warned of risks stemming from a hasty re-opening.

Investors are now waiting for U.S. March inflation data due on Tuesday.

“We are set to see the first evidence of the much anticipated surge in inflation that is widely expected through the coming months as base effects from a year ago begin to take effect as the sharp declines post-COVID start to fall out of the annual calculations,” MUFG analysts said.

They said the dollar’s fortunes could well “remain linked to 10-year yields”.

The benchmark 10-year Treasury yield was at 1.664% after dropping to as low as 1.6170% last week. It had surged to a more than a one-year high of 1.7760% on March 30.

The dollar index, which measures the U.S. currency against a basket of currencies, weakened 0.2% to 92.03. The euro initially dropped but later recovered and was up 0.1% to $1.1915.

Bitcoin traded above $60,000, closing the gap to its record high.

Against the pound the dollar initially gained before reversing course. The British currency was last up 0.5% at $1.3763 after briefly touching a two-month low of $1.3669 as traders cheered the latest phase of the government’s economic re-opening plan.

The dollar fell 0.3% to 109.33 yen versus the Japanese currency.

U.S. dollar net short positions have fallen to their lowest in nearly three years, according to data published on Friday.

ING analysts noted that speculators had cut their net short dollar positions for the 12th consecutive week, which could prove a headwind for further dollar gains.

“At this stage, the dollar has lost all its positioning “advantage”, having a neutral speculative positioning, which suggests we should no longer see dollar rallies against most G10 currencies exacerbated by the unwinding of USD shorts,” they wrote.

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Naira

Naira Daily Foreign Exchange Rates for Friday, April 9, 2021

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Naira Dollar Exchange Rate

Naira exchanged at N485 to a United States Dollar on Friday, April 9 2021 at the parallel market. Against the British Pound, it traded at N670 and N574 to a Euro. 

Naira Black Market Exchange Rates

Morning * Midday** Evening *** Final Rates

Date USD GBP EURO YUAN Canadian Australian
NGN BUY/SELL BUY/SELL BUY/SELL BUY/SELL BUY/SELL BUY/SELL
09/04/2021 480/485 662/670 565/574 62/69 393/400 292/320
08/04/2021 480/485 662/670 565/573 62/69 393/400 292/320
07/04/2021 478/485 662/670 565/673 62/69 392/400 292/320
06/04/2021 478/486 664/674 563/673 62/69 392/400 292/320
05/04/2021 478/486 664/674 565/673 62/69 392/400 292/320
02/04/2021 478/486 662/672 565/673 62/69 392/400 292/320
31/03/2021 482/486 672/678 565/673 62/69 392/400 292/320
30/03/2021 482/486 672/678 567/577 62/69 392/400 290/325
29/03/2021 480/485 670/677 568/575 62/69 390/400 290/325
26/03/2021 480/485 670/680 568/578 62/69 390/400 290/325
25/03/2021 480/486 672/680 570/580 62/69 390/400 290/320
24/03/2021 480/486 672/680 572/581 62/69 393/400 295/320
23/03/2021 480/486 672/680 572/582 60/68 390/400 295/320
22/03/2021 480/486 672/680 582/582 60/68 390/400 285/300
19/03/2021 480/485 672/680 573/583 60/68 390/400 282/300
18/03/2021 480/485 672/680 573/582 60/68 390/400 282/300
17/03/2021 478/485 670/678 572/582 60/68 390/400 282/300
16/03/2021 478/485 670/680 572/582 60/68 386/398 282/300
15/03/2021 478/485 670/676 572/582 60/68 386/398 282/300
12/03/2021 477/485 670/675 570/580 60/68 386/398 282/300
11/03/2021 475/482 668/675 568/575 60/68 386/398 282/300
10/03/2021 477/484 670/675 570/580 60/68 386/398 282/300
09/03/2021 475/484 670/675 578/580 60/68 385/395 282/300
08/03/2021 475/482 670/675 578/583 60/68 385/395 282/300
05/03/2021 475/480 670/675 577/582 60/68 385/395 282/300
04/03/2021 475/480 665/672 574/580 60/68 385/395 282/300
03/03/2021 475/480 662/672 574/580 60/68 385/395 282/300
02/03/2021 475/480 662/672 574/580 60/68 385/395 282/300
01/03/2021 475/482 662/672 575/583 60/68 385/395 282/300
26/02/2021 475/482 660/672 575/583 60/68 385/395 282/300
25/02/2021 475/480 660/670 572/580 60/68 385/395 282/300
24/02/2021 475/480 655/670 570/580 60/68 385/395 282/300
23/02/2021 475/480 655/665 575/582 60/68 385/395 282/300
22/02/2021 475/480 652/660 575/580 60/68 385/395 282/300
19/02/2021 474/478 648/655 570/577 60/68 385/395 282/300
18/02/2021 472/477 645/655 570/575 60/68 385/395 282/300
17/02/2021 472/478 645/655 570/575 60/68 385/395 282/300
16/02/2021 465/473 645/652 565/570 60/68 385/395 282/300
15/02/2021 465/473 642/652 562/570 60/68 385/395 282/300
12/02/2021 465/473 642/650 562/570 60/68 385/395 282/300
11/02/2021 465/475 640/650 560/570 60/70 385/400 280/300
10/02/2021 472/478 645/652 565/575 60/70 385/400 280/300
09/02/2021 474/480 645/655 567/575 60/70 385/400 280/300
08/02/2021 474/480 645/655 567/575 60/70 385/400 280/300
05/02/2021 474/480 645/653 567/578 60/70 385/400 280/300
04/02/2021 474/480 645/653 567/578 60/70 385/400 280/300
03/02/2021 474/480 642/655 575/580 60/70 385/400 280/300
02/02/2021 474/480 642/655 575/580 60/70 385/400 280/300
01/02/2021 474/480 642/655 575/580 60/70 385/400 280/300
29/01/2021 474/480 642/652 575/580 60/70 385/400 280/300

Bureau De Change Naira Rates

Date USD GBP EURO
NGN BUY/SELL BUY/SELL BUY/SELL
09/04/2021 472/482 661/673 56/570
08/04/2021 473/482 662/673 561/572
07/04/2021 475/485 661/674 560/573
06/04/2021 475/485 662/674 550/573
05/04/2021 475/485 662/674 560/574
04/04/2021 475/485 660/675 560/574
03/04/2021 475/485 660/675 560/574
02/04/2021 475/485 660/675 560/574
01/04/2021 475/485 660/675 560/574
31/03/2021 475/485 665/675 560/574
30/03/2021 475/485 668/675 564/574
29/03/2021 475/485 668/675 569/576
26/03/2021 475/485 668/675 569/576
25/03/2021 475/485 667/675 569/576
24/03/2021 475/485 667/675 569/576
23/03/2021 475/485 668/678 570/577
22/03/2021 475/485 670/678 570/577
19/03/2021 475/485 670/678 570/578
18/03/2021 475/485 668/675 569/578
17/03/2021 475/485 667/674 569/578
16/03/2021 475/485 667/674 569/578
15/03/2021 470/480 665/674 560/578
12/03/2021 470/480 665/674 560/578
11/03/2021 470/480 665/674 560/578
10/03/2021 470/480 665/674 560/578
09/03/2021 470/480 665/674 567/580
08/03/2021 470/480 662/672 570/580
05/03/2021 470/480 662/672 570/580
04/03/2021 470/480 662/672 570/580
03/03/2021 470/480 662/670 573/580
02/03/2021 470/480 660/669 573/580
01/03/2021 470/480 660/669 574/580
26/02/2021 470/480 660/669 574/580
25/02/2021 470/480 658/665 574/580
24/02/2021 470/478 654/660 570/578
23/02/2021 470/478 654/660 570/578
22/02/2021 470/477 650/656 570/577
19/02/2021 465/476 645/656 565/573
18/02/2021 465/475 640/652 563/570
17/02/2021 465/477 640/655 562/572
16/02/2021 460/475 640/652 562/570
15/02/2021 460/475 638/652 561/568
12/02/2021 467/475 635/650 562/570
11/02/2021 465/475 640/655 560/575
10/02/2021 472/478 640/655 565/575
09/02/2021 472/478 640/655 565/575
08/02/2021 472/478 640/655 565/575
05/02/2021 472/478 640/650 565/575
04/02/2021 472/478 640/650 565/575
03/02/2021 471/478 640/650 572/580
02/02/2021 471/478 640/655 572/580
01/02/2021 471/478 640/655 572/580
29/01/2021 471/477 640/648 570/579

Central Bank of Nigeria’s Official Naira Rates

 

 

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Naira

Naira Exchange Rates; Wednesday, April 7, 2021

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naira

Naira traded at N485 to a United States Dollar on Wednesday 07, April 2021 at the black market. While against the British Pound it sold at N670 and N573 to a single Euro as shown below.

Naira Black Market Exchange Rates

Morning * Midday** Evening *** Final Rates

Date USD GBP EURO YUAN Canadian Australian
NGN BUY/SELL BUY/SELL BUY/SELL BUY/SELL BUY/SELL BUY/SELL
07/04/2021 480/485 662/670 565/574 62/69 392/400 292/320
06/04/2021 478/486 664/674 563/573 62/69 392/400 292/320
05/04/2021 478/486 664/674 565/573 62/69 392/400 292/320
02/04/2021 478/486 662/672 565/573 62/69 392/400 292/320
31/03/2021 482/486 672/678 565/573 62/69 392/400 292/320
30/03/2021 482/486 672/678 567/577 62/69 392/400 290/325
29/03/2021 480/485 670/677 568/575 62/69 390/400 290/325
26/03/2021 480/485 670/680 568/578 62/69 390/400 290/325
25/03/2021 480/486 672/680 570/580 62/69 390/400 290/320
24/03/2021 480/486 672/680 572/581 62/69 393/400 295/320
23/03/2021 480/486 672/680 572/582 60/68 390/400 295/320
22/03/2021 480/486 672/680 582/582 60/68 390/400 285/300
19/03/2021 480/485 672/680 573/583 60/68 390/400 282/300
18/03/2021 480/485 672/680 573/582 60/68 390/400 282/300
17/03/2021 478/485 670/678 572/582 60/68 390/400 282/300
16/03/2021 478/485 670/680 572/582 60/68 386/398 282/300
15/03/2021 478/485 670/676 572/582 60/68 386/398 282/300
12/03/2021 477/485 670/675 570/580 60/68 386/398 282/300
11/03/2021 475/482 668/675 568/575 60/68 386/398 282/300
10/03/2021 477/484 670/675 570/580 60/68 386/398 282/300
09/03/2021 475/484 670/675 578/580 60/68 385/395 282/300
08/03/2021 475/482 670/675 578/583 60/68 385/395 282/300
05/03/2021 475/480 670/675 577/582 60/68 385/395 282/300
04/03/2021 475/480 665/672 574/580 60/68 385/395 282/300
03/03/2021 475/480 662/672 574/580 60/68 385/395 282/300
02/03/2021 475/480 662/672 574/580 60/68 385/395 282/300
01/03/2021 475/482 662/672 575/583 60/68 385/395 282/300
26/02/2021 475/482 660/672 575/583 60/68 385/395 282/300
25/02/2021 475/480 660/670 572/580 60/68 385/395 282/300
24/02/2021 475/480 655/670 570/580 60/68 385/395 282/300
23/02/2021 475/480 655/665 575/582 60/68 385/395 282/300
22/02/2021 475/480 652/660 575/580 60/68 385/395 282/300
19/02/2021 474/478 648/655 570/577 60/68 385/395 282/300
18/02/2021 472/477 645/655 570/575 60/68 385/395 282/300
17/02/2021 472/478 645/655 570/575 60/68 385/395 282/300
16/02/2021 465/473 645/652 565/570 60/68 385/395 282/300
15/02/2021 465/473 642/652 562/570 60/68 385/395 282/300
12/02/2021 465/473 642/650 562/570 60/68 385/395 282/300
11/02/2021 465/475 640/650 560/570 60/70 385/400 280/300
10/02/2021 472/478 645/652 565/575 60/70 385/400 280/300
09/02/2021 474/480 645/655 567/575 60/70 385/400 280/300
08/02/2021 474/480 645/655 567/575 60/70 385/400 280/300
05/02/2021 474/480 645/653 567/578 60/70 385/400 280/300
04/02/2021 474/480 645/653 567/578 60/70 385/400 280/300
03/02/2021 474/480 642/655 575/580 60/70 385/400 280/300
02/02/2021 474/480 642/655 575/580 60/70 385/400 280/300
01/02/2021 474/480 642/655 575/580 60/70 385/400 280/300
29/01/2021 474/480 642/652 575/580 60/70 385/400 280/300

Bureau De Change Naira Rates

Date USD GBP EURO
NGN BUY/SELL BUY/SELL BUY/SELL
07/04/2021 475/485 662/674 560/573
06/04/2021 475/485 662/674 550/573
05/04/2021 475/485 662/674 560/574
04/04/2021 475/485 660/675 560/574
03/04/2021 475/485 660/675 560/574
02/04/2021 475/485 660/675 560/574
01/04/2021 475/485 660/675 560/574
31/03/2021 475/485 665/675 560/574
30/03/2021 475/485 668/675 564/574
29/03/2021 475/485 668/675 569/576
26/03/2021 475/485 668/675 569/576
25/03/2021 475/485 667/675 569/576
24/03/2021 475/485 667/675 569/576
23/03/2021 475/485 668/678 570/577
22/03/2021 475/485 670/678 570/577
19/03/2021 475/485 670/678 570/578
18/03/2021 475/485 668/675 569/578
17/03/2021 475/485 667/674 569/578
16/03/2021 475/485 667/674 569/578
15/03/2021 470/480 665/674 560/578
12/03/2021 470/480 665/674 560/578
11/03/2021 470/480 665/674 560/578
10/03/2021 470/480 665/674 560/578
09/03/2021 470/480 665/674 567/580
08/03/2021 470/480 662/672 570/580
05/03/2021 470/480 662/672 570/580
04/03/2021 470/480 662/672 570/580
03/03/2021 470/480 662/670 573/580
02/03/2021 470/480 660/669 573/580
01/03/2021 470/480 660/669 574/580
26/02/2021 470/480 660/669 574/580
25/02/2021 470/480 658/665 574/580
24/02/2021 470/478 654/660 570/578
23/02/2021 470/478 654/660 570/578
22/02/2021 470/477 650/656 570/577
19/02/2021 465/476 645/656 565/573
18/02/2021 465/475 640/652 563/570
17/02/2021 465/477 640/655 562/572
16/02/2021 460/475 640/652 562/570
15/02/2021 460/475 638/652 561/568
12/02/2021 467/475 635/650 562/570
11/02/2021 465/475 640/655 560/575
10/02/2021 472/478 640/655 565/575
09/02/2021 472/478 640/655 565/575
08/02/2021 472/478 640/655 565/575
05/02/2021 472/478 640/650 565/575
04/02/2021 472/478 640/650 565/575
03/02/2021 471/478 640/650 572/580
02/02/2021 471/478 640/655 572/580
01/02/2021 471/478 640/655 572/580
29/01/2021 471/477 640/648 570/579

Central Bank of Nigeria’s Official Naira Rates

 

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