Dollar slips as Fed outlook shifts
Fed drops some hawkish rhetoric
Dollar down broadly, euro leads gains
Some losses pared after Yellen remarks
By Tom Westbrook
SINGAPORE, March 23 (Reuters) -The dollar was under pressure near seven-week lows on Thursday as U.S. bond yields fell sharply after the Federal Reserve sounded close to calling time on interest rate hikes.
The Fed raised its benchmark funds rate by 25 basis points, as expected, but dropped language about "ongoing increases" being needed in favour of "some additional" rises, as it waits and watches how wobbling confidence in banks affects the economy.
Futures 0#FF: imply only an even chance of one more hike. That's a contrast to Europe where markets see another 50 bp or so to go, and the gap sent the euro EUR=EBS surging.
The dollar pared some of its losses when U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen set off another round of bank stock selling and jitters over stability by telling Congress she hasn't considered or discussed blanket insurance for deposits.
The euro strengthened as much as 1.3% to its highest since early February at $1.0912, though by the Asian morning it had dropped back to bought $1.0872.
Sterling GBP=D3 also shot to a seven-week high as British inflation unexpectedly rose, leaving it at an eye-watering 10.4% and heaping pressure on the Bank of England to raise rates and sound hawkish at its meeting later in the day.
Dollar/yen JPY=EBS fell 0.7% overnight and was edging lower in the Asian morning at 131.19. Two-year Treasury yields US2YT=TWEB fell 22 bps on Wednesday. US/ FEDWATCH
The shift in tone from the Fed makes it less likely that markets return to worrying that strong economic data is going to lead to more and more rate hikes, said NatWest Markets head of G10 FX strategy Brian Daingerfield.
"From the foreign exchange perspective, we think that argues for further dollar weakness as the ceiling for the Fed cycle has clearly come down."
Financial markets have been roiled by wavering confidence in banks globally following a run on Silicon Valley Bank two weeks ago and the sudden demise of Credit Suisse.
The risk-sensitive Australian dollar AUD=D3 recoiled sharply from a two-week high of $0.6759 to be back at $0.6707 on Thursday morning.
The New Zealand dollar NZD=D3 also gave up overnight gains, but was firm in morning trade at $0.6238. Sterling bought $1.2282 after rising as high as $1.2334 overnight. Markets have priced a 25bp hike from the BoE. 0#BOEWATCH
The focus on the banking front is now primarily on U.S. regional lenders where worry of a contagious run on deposits remains elevated.
Fed Chair Jerome Powell said deposit flows have stabilised in the last week, and smaller lenders said they took some comfort from Yellen's remarks that deposit insurance would be considered were there to be a contagion risk.
That "took the anxiety out of the room," according to Daniel Kimbell, an executive at the local Passumpsic Bank in St Johnsbury, Vermont.
Bitcoin BTC=BTSP fell 3% to $27,360 after a series of U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission lawsuits over crypto promotion put a dampener on digital assets.
Currency bid prices at 0050 GMT
All spots FX=
Tokyo spots AFX=
Europe spots EFX=
Tokyo Forex market info from BOJ TKYFX
World FX rateshttps://tmsnrt.rs/2RBWI5E
Reporting by Tom Westbrook; Editing by Simon Cameron-Moore
Disclaimer: The XM Group entities provide execution-only service and access to our Online Trading Facility, permitting a person to view and/or use the content available on or via the website, is not intended to change or expand on this, nor does it change or expand on this. Such access and use are always subject to: (i) Terms and Conditions; (ii) Risk Warnings; and (iii) Full Disclaimer. Such content is therefore provided as no more than general information. Particularly, please be aware that the contents of our Online Trading Facility are neither a solicitation, nor an offer to enter any transactions on the financial markets. Trading on any financial market involves a significant level of risk to your capital.
All material published on our Online Trading Facility is intended for educational/informational purposes only, and does not contain – nor should it be considered as containing – financial, investment tax or trading advice and recommendations; or a record of our trading prices; or an offer of, or solicitation for, a transaction in any financial instruments; or unsolicited financial promotions to you.
Any third-party content, as well as content prepared by XM, such as: opinions, news, research, analyses, prices and other information or links to third-party sites contained on this website are provided on an “as-is” basis, as general market commentary, and do not constitute investment advice. To the extent that any content is construed as investment research, you must note and accept that the content was not intended to and has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research and as such, it would be considered as marketing communication under the relevant laws and regulations. Please ensure that you have read and understood our Notification on Non-Independent Investment. Research and Risk Warning concerning the foregoing information, which can be accessed here.