USD - The dollar is evenly divided this morning against its 16 most actively traded counterparts. Yesterday, investors took note of the Fed's latest decision, which proved surprisingly hawkish. While policymakers did reiterate their concerns with slowing economic growth and their guidance on ultra-low interest rates through 2014, they stopped short of signaling any imminent steps to ease policies further. The resulting support for the dollar is thus two fold. First, no immediate plans for a third round of quantitative easing is a positive for the dollar as the previous QE programs both weighed heavily and undermined the dollar's role as the default global reserve currency. Second, the lack of central bank support leaves questions about the faltering economy unanswered. The resulting, drop in confidence and the selloff in equities and commodities provides support for the dollar in its continued role as a "safe-haven" asset. Meanwhile, weekly jobless claims registered better than expected this morning at 365k versus the consensus forecast of 370k. Continuing claims also extended their recent declines, falling to 3272k from 3291k in June. However, the road ahead looks to remain bumpy with a gauge of factory orders contracting by 0.5% in June, reversing the previous month's gains.
EUR - The euro is back near the bottom of its recent ranges, paring sharp early morning gains as all eyes were on the ECB. Investors were hopeful in the lead up to the Bank's meeting, inflated by ECB President Draghi's assurance that policymakers will do whatever is needed to support the Eurozone. However, as was inevitable, policymakers failed to fill such lofty expectations. Draghi laid out a tough path of deficit targets and other preconditions before the ECB will intervene in regional sovereign debt markets. Essentially, this translates to Italy and Spain needing to commit to the requirements of a formal "bailout" program before the ECB will buy their bonds. While the decision has disappointed global investors, driving stocks and commodities lower, it is surely more palatable to the region's core economies. With the ECB also pushing for Germany to approve the ESM - the region's permanent "bailout" fund - and provide it with a banking license, it should not be a surprise that the Bank took a more conservative course of action.
GBP - Sterling remains towards the bottom of its recent ranges this morning after the BoE kept its policies unaltered. No change was expected after the Bank upped its asset purchase program to £375b at their last meeting. Investors will however take note of policymakers' updated economic projections, which will be published next week. While PMI construction data this morning beat expectations at 50.9, lower projections are generally expected with little signs of economic growth.
JPY - The yen rebounded against most of its counterparts overnight, with a 0.3% gain against the USD and a 0.5% gain versus the EUR. With confidence wavering following the Fed, ECB and BoE disappointments, the yen has found renewed support as investors seek its relative safety.
Commodity Currencies - The commodity linked currencies are mostly lower this morning, albeit within their recent ranges. Raw good's are in the red with oil falling to $88.45/bbl, gold dropping to $1594/oz, and copper at $332/lb. The CAD traded through a rather volatile overnight session, nearly reaching parity with the USD before retreating back to the middle of its weekly ranges. Similarly, the MXN has proved surprisingly resilient, thanks to its relatively high yields. Gains have however been limited after data showed remittances to Mexico unexpectedly dropped to $2092.9m in July as opportunities in foreign labor markets were limited. The AUD and NZD are both relatively flat after surging higher in overnight trading. The AUD is well supported after Australian retail sales registered better than anticipated, gaining by 1.0% after an upwardly revised 0.8% gain in the previous month. The nation also unexpectedly posted a trade surplus in July as demand for Australian exports proved to be more resilient than most had expected.