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Markets Anticipating Speeches by Japan's and Eurozone's Monetary Policy Officials

Tomorrow the Bank of Japan is expected to report on monetary policy, and an ECB's press conference is also scheduled for tomorrow. In the light of the upcoming events, local consolidation is occurring in the markets, including currency markets and stock exchanges.

The RBA's meeting minutes released yesterday backed the market opinion in regard to keeping Australia's monetary policy within the current trend, and also helped the Aussie to consolidate above the resistance at 0.79 and increase the odds that the Australian dollar will rise to 0.80.

The euro against the US dollar rate yesterday reached new highs at 1.158, however by the end of the day it made a partial correction by closing at 1.155. In the morning, the currency continues declining, which is not surprising, taking into consideration an upcoming ECB's monetary policy decision. A two-day meeting of the Governing Council of the ECB is about to start today, which is likely to clear the intentions of the ECB in regard to the stimulus program.

USD/JPY continues consolidating within the 120 level, as we discussed earlier. It is difficult for the yen to increase without an additional driver from the Bank of Japan. The market is in need of at least verbal interventions, but for now it looks more like something unbelievable for the Bank of Japan, considering the near-zero dynamics of rise in inflation in Japan.

The ruble is being supported by overall demand for risky assets, which was formed because of several reasons. First, there were weak US macroeconomic data released, which made Janet Yellen's testimony before Congress look rather neutral. Another reason was yet another political defeat of Donald Trump: not all of his colleagues from the Republican Party backed the abolition of the so-called Obamacare law, which, in its turn, calls into question further reforms promised by Trump. In the upcoming days, data on US GDP - an important indicator - will be released, which is tracked by the US Fed. Also, an ECB press conference is expected to take place. The data might be released being worse-than-expected, which may give momentum to an increase in risky assets.

Oil is also supporting a rise of the Russian currency. However, the question now is, how long can this factor contribute to the ruble? On the one hand, favourable conditions are now emerging in the oil market: there is a decrease in oil inventories, and even though drilling activities are still on the rise in the North America, the rise is not a rapid one, whereas speculators tend to exit their short positions. On the other hand, long-term factors that support the ruble are gradually worsening. The OPEC agreement is 'in tatters'. Not only did Libya increase its oil production and now its oil output is over 1 million barrels per day, Ecuador is now declining to fulfill its responsibilities under the OPEC+ agreement, referring to a 'difficult economic situation'. On top of that, Saudi Arabia itself boosted oil production in June.

Ivan Kapustyanskiy, equity analyst at Forex Optimum

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