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US Dollar Rebound Seeks Fuel From Yellen Comments

US Dollar Rebound Seeks Fuel From Yellen Comments

Ilya Spivak, Head Strategist, APAC

Talking Points:

  • US Dollar rebound hinges on the tone of Fed Chair Yellen testimony
  • Rebuilding 2016 FOMC rate hike bets likely to rekindle risk aversion
  • Eurozone GDP data may help inform ECB stimulus expansion bets

The US Dollar launched a recovery from a two-month low following the release of January's US employment. While payrolls numbers trailed forecasts, the unemployment rate unexpectedly declined and wage growth impressed on the upside.

This appeared to rekindle Fed rate hike speculation (as we suspected might happen ahead of the release). The greenback moved broadly higher against its major counterparts alongside a rally in front-end US bond yields. Meanwhile, the stocks declined to reflect returning fears of on-coming tightening.

The spotlight now falls to Fed Chair Janet Yellen, who will take turns delivering her semi-annual testimony to the Finance Committees of both chambers of the US Congress.

Yellen will try to strike a balanced tone, but her representation of the FOMC middle ground may hint at the lean of the majority view. Comments suggesting the group's appetite for rate hikes has diminished less than that of the markets may boost USD while weighing on sentiment-geared assets.

--- Created by Ilya Spivak, Currency Strategist for DailyFX.com

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