Forex Market: AUD/USD hits a one-week high on COVID-19 vaccine optimism

AUD/USD, along with other risk assets, received a boost overnight after media reports stated that Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine had had a 94.5% efficacy rate, according to preliminary results from a large late-stage clinical trial.

The major pair was holding above the 0.7300 mark on Tuesday, after earlier touching a one-week high of 0.7334.

“The Moderna news overnight is the second positive vaccine news following Pfizer/BioNTech results last week,” NAB analysts wrote in an investor note.

“Arguably, however, Moderna’s preliminary results are even better and provide a massive boost to the fight against the pandemic. These are all very encouraging news, meaning that by late January/early February we could have vaccines being distributed to those in most need.”

Meanwhile, the minutes of Reserve Bank of Australia’s policy meeting in November showed earlier Tuesday that it stood ready to provide further stimulus if required.

The central bank cut its official cash rate and the target for 3-year bond yields by 15 basis points to 0.10% on November 3rd.

“The board expects the cash rate to remain at its current level for at least 3 years, but beyond that members have less confidence about the path of interest rates,” the RBA minutes stated.

RBA policy makers also said the prospect of negative interest rates was extraordinarily unlikely.

As of 9:07 GMT on Tuesday AUD/USD was edging up 0.15% to trade at 0.7330, after earlier touching an intraday high of 0.7334, or a level not seen since November 9th (0.7340). The major pair has risen 4.37% so far in November, after retreating 1.87% in October.

In terms of US macroeconomic data, today market players will be paying attention to the monthly reports on retail sales, industrial production and business inventories, scheduled for release at 13:30 GMT, 14:15 GMT and 15:00 GMT respectively.

Bond Yield Spread

The spread between 2-year Australian and 2-year US bond yields, which reflects the flow of funds in a short term, equaled -7.0 basis points (-0.070%) as of 7:15 GMT on Tuesday, up from -7.1 basis points on November 16th.

Daily Pivot Levels (traditional method of calculation)

Central Pivot – 0.7303
R1 – 0.7343
R2 – 0.7366
R3 – 0.7406
R4 – 0.7446

S1 – 0.7280
S2 – 0.7240
S3 – 0.7217
S4 – 0.7193

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