- GBP/USD pokes on key resistance.
- GBP/USD above important psychological levels.
- Asia-Pacific equities trade mixed on economic and virus data.
- US jobless claims eyed.
Asia-Pacific equities traded mixed today with China’s CSI 300 index rising by 1.45 Percent while Australia’s ASX 200 fell by 1.43 Percent. In the currency markets, the risk-sensitive AUD, NZD and CAD recorded gains while the safe-haven USD failed to arrest the continuous fall against its competitors. The 10-year US Treasuries yield 0.93 Percent, recording no change while gold and silver prices slipped.
In Australia, six new locally-spread coronavirus cases brought to an end Victoria’s 61-day virus-free streak. The new cases and the climbing number of infections in New South Wales dragged the equities down.
Meanwhile, Chinese equities ignored the slowdown in economic activity in December to surge higher. Market participants cheered the announcement from Sinopharm that its vaccine could prevent the infection in 79.3 Percent of the total number of inoculated individuals.
In the US market, traders will eye the US jobless claims for the week ending December 26.
In the UK, the Parliament approved the post-Brexit trade deal with the European Union just a day ahead of the final deadline today – the last day of 2020.
The GBP might benefit from the ratification of the deal.
The UK PM sounded very optimistic after the Parliament approval and said, “the destiny of this great country now resides firmly in our hands.”
Nevertheless, analysts point out the lack of provisions in the Brexit deal for the local industry, which accounts for 80 Percent of the UK economy.
Still, market participants might rally behind GBP as the UK and EU enter into a tariff-free and quota-free trade environment.
The regulatory approval for the coronavirus vaccine developed by the University of Oxford and AstraZeneca could also underpin the currency. Health Secretary Matt Hancock expressed hopes that coronavirus could be overcome by spring 2021 as the vaccines from Pfizer and AstraZeneca are being rolled out in the country.