The Federal Reserve’s latest rate hike is expected to keep markets on edge in the holiday-shortened week ahead. Wall Street will be closed on Monday, with markets observing Juneteenth for the first time.
The U.S. central bank on Wednesday raised its benchmark interest rate by 75 basis points, the largest increase in nearly three decades. Fed Chair Jerome Powell also hinted at more aggressive tightening ahead as policymakers ratchet up their fight against inflation.
While the Fed’s unprecedented action Wednesday reiterated its commitment to normalizing price levels, investors, and economists fear this also increased the risk its inflation-fighting measures may tip the economy into a recession.
All eyes will remain Powell in the coming week, with the Fed chair set to testify before the U.S. Senate Banking Committee Wednesday morning.
The Fed chief has remained adamant that the U.S. economy can avoid an economic slowdown, even as market participants lose confidence at the prospect of a “soft landing” – a period when economic growth is slowed just enough to quell inflation but without spurring economic downturn.
U.S. President Joe Biden said on Saturday that he was considering lifting some tariffs on China and a possible pause on the federal gas tax to fight inflation.
In other news, Bitcoin extended its slide and fell below $20,000 for the first time since December 2020 over the weekend. BTC/USD ended up losing more than 20% on a weekly basis and was last seen trading within a touching distance of $20,000. Ethereum recovered modestly after having dropped below the key $1,000 mark on Saturday but failed to gather further momentum.
This Week’s High Impact Events
The times below are GMT +3.
Monday 20th June
16.00 – Europe – ECB President Lagarde Speaks
Potential instruments to Trade: EUR Crosses.
18.00 – Europe – ECB President Lagarde Speaks
Potential instruments to Trade: EUR Crosses.
19.45 – US – FOMC Member Bullard Speaks
Potential instruments to Trade: USD Crosses.
Tuesday 21st June
03.00 – Australia – RBA Gov. Lowe Speaks
Potential instruments to Trade: AUD Crosses.
04.30 – Australia – Monetary Policy Meeting Minutes
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