EUR/USD: Three Hawks and a Dove in Jackson Hole
The return of the EUR/USD pair to 1.1700-1.1900 was predicted by 35% of experts supported by 25% of oscillators that showed it was oversold. After renewing the annual low of 1.1665 on August 20, the pair did go into a correction, reaching 1.1775 on Thursday.
The week’s economic statistics proved weak enough for both the US and Eurozone, and all market attention has been shifted to the annual Jackson Hole symposium, running from 26 to 28 August. There were speeches by three representatives of the US Fed leadership, which turned out to be even more hawkish than investors had expected.
So the president of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis James Bullard said that the asset purchase program is doing the US economy more harm than good at the moment by inflating another soap bubble in the real estate market. According to Esther George, head of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, the current outbreak of the pandemic caused by the Delta strain will not have a significant impact on the economic situation in the country, and it would be better if the process of winding down QE starts earlier than later.
Robert Kaplan from Dallas joined his fellow hawks. Thus, the overall sentiment of these three high Federal Reserve officials can be reduced to the desire to start reducing asset purchases as early as the first and early second quarter of 2022, in the amount of $15 billion per month. Such a pace will allow the US central bank to raise its interest rate by the end of next year.
Fed chief Jerome Powell spoke at the Jackson Hole symposium at the very end of the working week, on the evening of Friday August 27. Some investors hoped that his position would be significantly softer than that of the Bullard-George-Kaplan trio. Otherwise, it could have dealt a major blow to the stock market, knocking down major indices including the Dow Jones, S&P500 and Nasdaq Composite. The bulls on the DXY dollar index, on the contrary, would be fazed by Jerome Powell’s hawkish speeches. And although the consensus is gradually shifting to the fact that the regulator will announce the start of reducing monetary stimulus in November and will start implementing its plans in December-January, there was no need to wait for exact dates from the head of the Federal Reserve. That’s exactly what happened: the high official said discussions about timing were still under way, that the issue would depend on economic and health risks, and that the central bank would continue to take a patient approach to their policies. The dollar weakened sharply after these words, and stock indices, on the contrary, updated historical highs once again.
Experts and investors have yet to analyze the likelihood of monetary restriction beginning in a period or another. So far, after some hesitation following Mr Powell’s vaguely dovish position, the EUR/USD pair flew north, recorded a local high at 1.1802 and ended the five-day level at 1.1795.
Talking about the future, only 30% of the experts surveyed voted for the further growth of the pair, with the next targets of 1.1830 and 1.1900. The remaining 70% of analysts have taken the opposite view. They believe that the pair should retest the 1.1665 level. The nearest support is 1.1750 and 1.1700. The position of the indicators in total can be described as neutral. Among the oscillators on D1, 50% indicate a rise in the pair, 25% indicate a fall, and another 25% are colored neutral gray. As for trend indicators, 80% look south and 20% look north.
The coming week’s events include the release of German consumer market statistics on August 30 and September 01. Similar statistics for the Eurozone will be released on August 31 and September 03. As for the US, the ADP report on the employment in the private sector and the ISM index of business activity in the manufacturing sector of the country will be published on September 1. And on the first Friday of the month, September 03, we will traditionally learn the most important indicators from the US labor market, including the number of new jobs created outside the agricultural sector (NFP).
GBP/USD: Wherever the Euro Goes, the Pound Goes
Overall, GBP/USD dynamics was reminiscent of the previous pair’s movements. After reaching a low of 1.3600 on August 20, a rebound followed as a result of which the British pound rose to the mark 1.3767 on Thursday, August 26, as predicted by most (70%) experts.
Then came the meeting of American bankers in Jackson Hole and the hawkish speech of the aforementioned leaders of the Federal Reserve Bank, which led to some strengthening of the dollar and a decline in the pair to 1.3680. And then, thanks to the Fed chairman, the American currency began to fall in price again. As already mentioned, the market’s hopes that Powell would announce a specific and early date for winding down the asset repurchase program did not come to fruition. As a result, the pair went up sharply, reaching a height of 1.3780, and completed the trading session at 1.3760.
Giving a forecast for the coming week, the majority of analysts (75%) expect the US currency to strengthen and a new storm of the 1.3600 level. If successful, the next target will be the horizon 1.3480. The nearest support is the zone 1.3680-1.3700.
The remaining 25% believe that the growth opportunities for the British currency have not yet been exhausted. The nearest resistance is at 1.3780, the nearest target is the return of the GBP/USD pair to the 1.3800-1.3875 zone. The nearest resistance levels are 1.3910 and 1.3960.
As for the oscillators on D1, 40% look south, 50% look east, and only 10% look north. Among the trend indicators, the ratio of forces is 60% to 40% in favor of the reds.
USD/JPY: Calm, and Calm Again
Amid market unrest caused by statements from Fed executives, unlike the rest of the currencies, the yen, as a quiet haven, is successfully countering any storms. The USD/JPY pair has been moving along the 110.00 horizon since last March, making rare attempts to get out of the 108.30-111.00 trading channel. This time, starting the week from 109.80 mark, it finished it almost there, at 109.82, and the range of fluctuations narrows even more: from 109.40 at the low to 110.25 at the high.
This behavior of the pair leads experts to give very versatile predictions. 40% of them have sided with bulls this time, 30% side with bears, and 30% have taken a neutral position. As for the indicators on D1, one cannot give priority to any of the directions here either.
Support levels are 109.40, 109.10, 108.70 and 108.30. The bears’ dream is to retest the April low of 107.45. The nearest resistance levels are the 110.25, 110.55, 110.80, 111.00 and 111.65 zones. The ultimate goal of the bulls is still the same: to get to the cherished height of 112.00.
CRYPTOCURRENCIES: at the Crossroads
We put a question in the heading of the previous review. “The Lull Before the Storm?” – that is what it was. We also noted that powerful drivers will be needed to push bitcoin quotes above the current levels. But there were no drivers, so the storm hasn’t happened yet. Although the news background is generally quite positive.
Thus, one of the digital market locomotives, MicroStrategy, purchased an additional 3,907 BTC on August 24 for about $177 million. The average purchase price was $45,294 per coin. And this suggests that the company does not expect any serious drawdown of the BTC/USD pair, and, on the contrary, expects its further growth.
In total, this analytics software provider has invested more than $2.9 billion in digital gold. Now there is a total of 108,992 BTC on MicroStrategy’s balance sheet worth over $5 billion.
American banking giant Citigroup is awaiting regulatory approval to begin trading bitcoin futures contracts on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME). Citigroup will therefore become another megabank after Goldman Sachs offering similar opportunities.
Bloomberg experts suggest that the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) will approve not one, but several applications for the launch of ETFs on bitcoin futures. The goal is to maintain competition and not give anyone any advantage. The SEC may make its decision by the end of October. And the first European bitcoin futures could be launched as early as mid-September. This was announced by Europe’s largest derivatives exchange Eurex.
Having reached the medium-term target, the BTC/USD pair is “stuck” in the $47,000-50,000 range. This zone is a kind of intersection of two roads: horizontal and ascending channels. And the mood of the market for the coming weeks depends on whether the pair will be able to break through the support at the level of $47,000.
In terms of medium- to long-term forecasts, they remain positive overall. This was shown by a survey conducted by Elwood Asset Management with 55 out of approximately 175 cryptocurrency hedge funds. According to the data, 65% of these hedge funds predict that bitcoin will be trading in the $50,000 to $100,000 range by the end of 2021. 21% of those surveyed named a price between $100,000 and $150,000. And only 1% of hedge funds predicts that the asset’s value will be below $50,000.
63% of hedge funds believe that the cryptocurrency market capitalization will be in the range of $2 trillion to $5 trillion, with another 11% estimating a market capitalization of between $5 trillion and $10 trillion.
The fact that the price of BTC can show impressive growth, reaching $100,000, was admitted even by the constant critic of bitcoin, the president of the brokerage company Euro Pacific Capital Inc. Peter Schiff.
This “golden beetle” is known as the man who takes every opportunity to strike at cryptocurrency and call for the purchase of gold. However, this time, he did not undertake to dispute the fact that BTC is a great store of value. In fact, the ROI on bitcoin has been 8,900,000% over the past decade. At the same time, he remains bearish and excludes the possibility that the asset will ever be massively used as a means of payment. According to the financier, the only merit of bitcoin is that people speculate on it.
Mike McGlone, senior strategist at Bloomberg Intelligence, has also repeatedly predicted BTC’s growth to $100,000. But, according to the expert, the mainstream of the second largest cryptocurrency by capitalization can become an obstacle to growth. People are beginning to realize that ethereum is “the building block for all financial technology, DeFi and infrastructure in a world that is going digital,” McGlone said.
The expert named non-fungible tokens (NFT) as another powerful support for the price of the main altcoin. Such assets are becoming extremely popular and are mostly issued on the ETH blockchain.
At the same time, McGlone considers the former Goldman Sachs hedge fund manager Raoul Pal’s forecast of ethereum growth to $20,000 as overstated. But, according to the analyst, the price will not fall below $2,000 either, rather the rate will exceed $4,000.
The creator of this altcoin, Vitalik Buterin, is much more optimistic about the future of ethereum. He expects that after the recent London hardfork and implementation of EIP-1559, the ETH price will be 10 times higher than current levels and reach $30,000. In this case, the capitalization of this altcoin would reach $3 trillion, and exceed the capitalization of all the major technology companies in the world. In the meantime, this figure is about $380 billion.
As far as the total capitalization of the crypto market is concerned, as we suggested in the previous review, there is now a struggle in the area of the psychologically important $2.0tn level. Starting at $2.043 trillion, this figure rose to $2.162 trillion on August 23, it fell to $1.973 trillion by August 27, and it rose again to $2.021 trillion by Friday evening.
Trading volumes on the BTC network remain low. The Crypto Fear & Greed Index froze practically, having risen by only 1 point in a week, from 70 to 71.
And in conclusion, our not-so-serious life hacks column has another tip on how to get rich on cryptocurrency. It turns out that for this you just need to move to live in Cool Valley in Missouri (USA). The mayor of this town decided to seriously raise the welfare of its 1,500 residents, and to that end promised to transfer $500 to $1,000 to each of them in BTC. At the same time, he put forward one condition: recipients will not be able to sell their bitcoins for five years, which, according to the mayor, will allow them to wait for the price of BTC to rise to half a million dollars.