Dollar index testing lows from start of the year

USD has depreciated against most currencies

Chart of the Day

While the daily moves in the dollar index have been fairly modest, the trend is clearly in one direction as DXY approaches the lows seen at the start of the year. The renewed depreciation of the DXY could be because the Fed is showing no signs of tightening policy even as the economy recovers strongly - at the meeting yesterday, Powel said it wasn’t even time to discuss tapering asset purchases yet.

Macro

In Canada, retail sales increased by 4.8% MoM in February, with annual growth at 6.0% YoY. Consumer confidence would normally be consistent with weaker sales growth, but retail sales have benefitted from the closure of services.

Markets

The weekly EIA report showed that US crude production fell by 0.1 mn barrels last week, even though oil prices are now back near pre-Covid levels.

The US oil refinery utilization rate continues to edge up.

Crude inventories rose by 0.1 mn barrels last week and are still 3.1% higher than their average at this time of year over 2017-19.

WTI rose nevertheless rose yesterday, to $63.9. Over the past week, it is up by 4.1%.

The BRL is started to strengthen again, up by 4.1% against the USD in the past week.

The CAD is now the strongest in years, although only just.

A selection of assets that typify risk-on trades has increased in the past week, partly thanks to the further rise in copper, at least until yesterday.

Despite falling by 4.3%, copper is still up by over 5% in the past week.

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