Details Cookies
Hong Kong S.A.R
Cookie policy

This website uses cookies to offer you a better browsing experience by enabling, optimising and analysing site operations, as well as to provide personalised ad content and allow you to connect to social media. By choosing “Accept all” you consent to the use of cookies and the related processing of personal data. Select “Manage consent” to manage your consent preferences. You can change your preferences or retract your consent at any time via the cookie policy page. Please view our cookie policy here and our privacy policy here

FX Update: USD dumps on risk rebound. RBA dovish surprise. FX Update: USD dumps on risk rebound. RBA dovish surprise. FX Update: USD dumps on risk rebound. RBA dovish surprise.

FX Update: USD dumps on risk rebound. RBA dovish surprise.

Forex 4 minutes to read
John Hardy

Head of FX Strategy

Summary:  The US dollar has reversed sharply lower this week, pushed lower by a stout recovery, or perhaps squeeze, in risk sentiment and possibly by end-of-month rebalancing flows. Overnight, the RBA waxed far more dovish than the market expected and yet AUDUSD remains heavily bid in early European trading, as risk sentiment may be dominating short term developments as fundamentals are ignored.

FX Trading focus: AUD firm even on dovish RBA, EURUSD bids for bullish reversal

Risk sentiment squeezed powerfully higher into month-end, perhaps in part on end-of-month portfolio rebalancing after what had been a brutal month for risky assets. As we pointed out in today’s Saxo Market Call podcast, the upside was greatest in the formerly most beaten down names, and the key question here is whether something new is afoot after the market has adjusted to a string of rate hikes from the Fed, or whether this was a one-off and ephemeral flow-based development that will quickly fade as the ongoing concern about the outlook for the economy and a tightening Fed reasserts itself.

It is remarkable to look at the relative lack of differentiation in how the US dollar sold off versus the euro and versus the Aussie by late morning today in Europe. Sure it makes sense to see significant back-filling in EURUSD after very strong German CPI number yesterday boosted short EU rates (also give the podcast a listen for more perspective) and as some may see this as possibly challenging the ECB’s commitment to dovish forward guidance at Thursday’s ECB meeting. But the RBA meeting overnight was overtly dovish relative to expectations and yet the Aussie also managed a steep rally versus the US dollar into late EU morning trading despite Fed expectations remaining at high levels.

Specifically, the RBA maintained that inflation will likely fall back below 3% next year after rising above that level this year, with inflation seen linked to “higher petrol prices, higher prices for newly constructed homes and the disruptions to global supply chains.” The RBA has persistently eyed wages as a key factor for whether to lift rates, and here the outlook remained dovish, as “Wages growth has picked up but, at the aggregate level, has only returned to the relatively low rates prevailing before the pandemic.”…and going forward “A further pick-up in wages growth is expected as the labor market tightens. This pick-up is still expected to be only gradual…” The real kick in the teeth for those looking for a more hawkish shift was the dovish guidance on rates, that “Ceasing purchase under the bond purchase program does not imply a near-term increase in interest rates”. As the RBA states that it “will not increase the cash rate until actual inflation is sustainably within the 2 to 3 per cent target range”, the big debate from here will be what interval of time meets the criteria of “sustainably”, just as the Fed eventually stumbled over its “transitory” language. This was a very negative AUD development, which will require strong risk sentiment, perhaps Chinese stimulus and soaring commodities prices to offset. Still watching the 0.7000 level in AUDUSD as a major trigger area for significant further lows if it comes into view on another wave of risk-off.

The EURUSD pair squeezed violently higher yesterday and into this morning as the US dollar came under pressure, but with isolated euro strength proving a significant driver yesterday, particularly in the wake of a far hotter than expected German CPI print, but potentially also on end-of-month rebalancing. The buying took the price action back well above 1.1200, but technically, a more robust reversal of the recent sell-off wave might require a quick spring up to 1.1300-50 area. More important would be a signal from the ECB meeting on Thursday and whether these latest hot inflation prints (France will report Jan. Flash CPI today, Euro Zone Jan. Flash CPI tomorrow) will see the ECB pulling forward the potential time horizon for a rate hike, with risk sentiment also playing a role.

Source: Saxo Group

Elsewhere, UK PM Johnson’s dire political straits are not feeding much angst for sterling, where the EURGBP rally yesterday was linked to a significant recovery in EU short yields as some are gunning for the ECB to crumble on hiking rates before year-end. The ruble is on a steep recovery path as Russian foreign minister Lavrov is set to speak over telephone with US Secretary of State Blinken. The Swedish krona’s recovery looks muted relative to the recovery in risk sentiment and the jump in the euro.

Table: FX Board of G10 and CNH trend evolution and strength.
Curiously, the dovish RBA failed to even take the Aussie down in crosses like AUDNZD, with important employment and earnings data for NZ up tonight – interesting to see the NZD neglect despite the comeback in risk sentiment. Likewise, as noted above, with the scale of the bounce in risk sentiment and the euro, the SEK momentum shift to the positive looks moderate thus far.

Source: Bloomberg and Saxo Group

Table: FX Board Trend Scoreboard for individual pairs.
Here, we are watching whether a fading of the risk sentiment bounce would see the USD firming up again on as a safe haven or failing to do so as Fed expectations might deflate slightly. If not, the USD trend higher is in for an imminent disruption. Certainly if long yields continue lower and risk sentiment rolls over, the JPY could shine, even against the greenback.

Source: Bloomberg and Saxo Group

Upcoming Economic Calendar Highlights (all times GMT)

  • 1330 – Canada Nov. GDP
  • 1500 – US Jan. ISM Manufacturing
  • 1500 – US Dec. JOLTS Job Openings
  • 2145 – New Zealand Q4 Employment and Earnings data
  • 0130 – Australia RBA Governor Lowe to speak

The Saxo Bank Group entities each provide execution-only service and access to Analysis permitting a person to view and/or use content available on or via the website is not intended to and does not change or expand on this. Such access and use are at all times subject to (i) The Terms of Use; (ii) Full Disclaimer; (iii) The Risk Warning; (iv) the Rules of Engagement and (v) Notices applying to Saxo News & Research and/or its content in addition (where relevant) to the terms governing the use of hyperlinks on the website of a member of the Saxo Bank Group by which access to Saxo News & Research is gained. Such content is therefore provided as no more than information. In particular no advice is intended to be provided or to be relied on as provided nor endorsed by any Saxo Bank Group entity; nor is it to be construed as solicitation or an incentive provided to subscribe for or sell or purchase any financial instrument. All trading or investments you make must be pursuant to your own unprompted and informed self-directed decision. As such no Saxo Bank Group entity will have or be liable for any losses that you may sustain as a result of any investment decision made in reliance on information which is available on Saxo News & Research or as a result of the use of the Saxo News & Research. Orders given and trades effected are deemed intended to be given or effected for the account of the customer with the Saxo Bank Group entity operating in the jurisdiction in which the customer resides and/or with whom the customer opened and maintains his/her trading account. Saxo News & Research does not contain (and should not be construed as containing) financial, investment, tax or trading advice or advice of any sort offered, recommended or endorsed by Saxo Bank Group and should not be construed as a record of our trading prices, or as an offer, incentive or solicitation for the subscription, sale or purchase in any financial instrument. To the extent that any content is construed as investment research, you must note and accept that the content was not intended to and has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research and as such, would be considered as a marketing communication under relevant laws.

Please read our disclaimers:
- Notification on Non-Independent Investment Research (
- Full disclaimer (

Saxo Capital Markets HK Limited
19th Floor
Shanghai Commercial Bank Tower
12 Queen’s Road Central
Hong Kong

Contact Saxo

Select region

Hong Kong S.A.R
Hong Kong S.A.R

Saxo Capital Markets HK is a company authorised and regulated by the Securities and Futures Commission of Hong Kong. Saxo Capital Markets HK Limited holds a Type 1 Regulated Activity (Dealing in securities); Type 2 Regulated Activity (Dealing in Futures Contract); Type 3 Regulated Activity (Leveraged foreign exchange trading); Type 4 Regulated Activity (Advising on securities) and Type 9 Regulated Activity (Asset Management) licenses (CE No. AVD061). Registered address: 19th Floor, Shanghai Commercial Bank Tower, 12 Queen’s Road Central, Hong Kong

By clicking on certain links on this site, you are aware and agree to leave the website of Saxo Capital Markets, proceed on to the linked site managed by Saxo Group and where you will be subject to the terms of that linked site.

Apple, iPad and iPhone are trademarks of Apple Inc., registered in the US and other countries. AppStore is a service mark of Apple Inc.

Please note that the information on this site and any product and services we offer are not targeted at investors residing in the United States and Japan, and are not intended for distribution to, or use by any person in any country or jurisdiction where such distribution or use would be contrary to local law or regulation. Please click here to view our full disclaimer.