Crypto Shakeout, USD Wilt Continues, BOC Next
Tuesday was a brutal day for cryptocurrencies with falls from 20-40% before a late bounce but in FX the bounce for the dollar was fleeting as it sank late. The Swiss franc was the best performer Tuesday while the New Zealand dollar lagged. The BOC decision is coming later. There are 4 existing Premium trades in progress, all of which are in the green. Here is a tweet from Ashraf on Dec 12, 6 day before Bitcoin's peak.
Bitcoin fell 20% on Tuesday as the US returned from a holiday and talk of a regulator crackdown continued. Ripple fell 40% as well.
One story was the collapse of the cryptoscam from Bitconnect and that may have played into the larger jitters. Impressively, the dip buyers stepped in on a few fronts and Bitcoin rebounded from $10,200 to $11,500 while Ripple rebounded to $1.20 from $0.87.
In FX, the US dollar finally staged a rebound and EUR/USD briefly fell below 1.2200 but it couldn't even sustain itself for the day as EUR/USD rebounded to 1.2270 and USD/JPY made fresh lows, in part due to the first negative day of the year in stocks.
Taking a step back, it's clear that the animal spirits have been unleashed throughout markets. Some tipping point has been reached and the crisis-era wounds have finally been healed. That is changing the way markets behave and adapting with it will be a major theme this year.
In the global economy, the big question right now is how deeply central bankers believe that we've turned a corner. One big clue will come Wednesday in the Bank of Canada decision. Here is Ashraf's piece on the BoC. It's unlikely that Poloz badly wants to hike but he painted himself into a corner by committing to data dependence and saying that 'caution' doesn't mean they won't hike. He's also limited in his statement communication by the same misstep.
However, he may also increasingly believe that an acceleration in growth and inflation is right around the corner. In that case, a hike with a hawkish stance is appropriate and USD/CAD will be on its way to 1.20.
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