Dollar jumps on Powell renomination, euro hurt by COVID lockdowns – CNBC

U.S. dollar bank notes are arranged for a photograph on September 7, 2017 in Hong Kong.

studioEAST | Getty Images

The dollar set a 16-month high against the euro on Monday after Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell was nominated for a second four-year term by President Joe Biden, while the single currency was also hurt by an increase in COVID-19 cases in the region.

Lael Brainard, the Federal Reserve board member who was the other top candidate for the job, will be vice chair, the White House said.

“With Powell being renominated for a second term, that suggests a less dovish outlook for monetary policy than under a potential Brainard leadership,” said Joe Manimbo, senior market analysts at Western Union Business Solutions in Washington.

“It looks like there’s greater scope for U.S. rate hikes under Powell with Powell remaining on as the Fed Chair, and that has been broadly positive for the dollar.”

The dollar index against a basket of currencies rose 0.27% on the day to 96.29, the highest since July 2020. The euro dipped 0.46% to $1.1248, also the weakest since July 2020.

The single currency was dragged lower earlier on Monday as concerns grew over new COVID-19 restrictions in Europe, with Austria entering another full lockdown and Germany considering following suit.

“It’s kind of been a one-two-punch for the euro. One has been a rise in cases across the bloc, and what that is doing is reinforcing the decidedly dovish outlook for (European Central Bank) policy and that stands in stark contrast to the Fed, where pressure is building for the U.S. central bank to adopt a quicker pace of normalization,” Manimbo said.

The Fed will release minutes from its Nov. 2-3 meeting on Wednesday, which will be evaluated for any new indications that Fed officials are becoming more concerned about stubbornly high inflation.

Fed officials Richard Clarida and Christopher Waller on Friday suggested a faster pace of stimulus tapering may be appropriate amid a quickening recovery and heated inflation.

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Dollar jumps on Powell renomination, euro hurt by COVID lockdowns – CNBC

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