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Euro knocked by fears of civil unrest in southern Italy

currency-newsEuro knocked by fears of civil unrest in southern Italy
The euro softened on Tuesday amid fears that growing unrest in the south of the country could add to Italy’s coronavirus woes.

Meanwhile, the pound is putting on a mixed performance this morning, with GBP/EUR muted at €1.1241 and GBP/USD sliding to $1.2353. GBP/CAD is steady at C$1.7505, while GBP/AUD and GBP/NZD have climbed to AU$2.0295 and NZ$2.0851 respectively.

The ISM manufacturing PMI will be in the spotlight today. A sharp slump in US manufacturing last month could hurt the US dollar.

What’s been happening?

The euro fell during yesterday’s session in response to concerns of potential civil unrest in the south of Italy.

This comes as authorities began deploying police to the streets of Sicily amid worries over potential looting or rioting after a ferry service carrying food and medicine was halted when the ferry company hit financial trouble.

Further limiting the appeal of the euro was the Eurozone's consumer price index, as inflation slowed by more-than-expected last month.

At the same time, in the UK the publication of some better-than-forecast business investment figures for 2019, as well as some end of quarter flows, helped the pound rally on Tuesday.

The US dollar, meanwhile, trended higher through most of yesterday’s trading session amid ongoing coronavirus uncertainty.

However, these gains were trimmed later in the session after Donald Trump held a press conference in which he warned the US faces a ‘very tough two weeks’, with the White House warning up to 240,000 Americans could die from the coronavirus.

What’s coming up?

Coronavirus developments will remain top of the agenda for investors today, but March’s final PMI releases from the US, UK and Eurozone will also be of interest.

In the US, the ISM manufacturing PMI may dent the US dollar this afternoon if domestic factory growth is shown to have shrunk by more-than-expected last month.

Meanwhile, there’s a good chance GBP investors will see the UK’s factory PMI revised down as the final release will also cover the period since the UK government imposed a countrywide lockdown.

Finally the Eurozone’s finalised figures are unlikely to inspire much confidence in the bloc’s manufacturing sector as they are expected to confirm factory growth slumped to a seven-year low in March.
Philip McHugh

Philip McHugh

Joining the corporate trading desk in 2007, Phil now over sees all of Currencies Direct’s corporate dealing activity. Having gained experience working with hundreds of businesses to optimise international payments processes and execute comprehensive risk management strategies, Phil currently works with a portfolio of corporate clients whilst managing Currencies Direct’s overall market exposure

Phil has FCA approval and has completed the Certificate in International Treasury Management (CertiTM)

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