Market Outlook for the US dollar
26-January-19: 2018 was a reasonable year for the dollar. Measured by the US Dollar Index, the greenback appreciated by 4 percent, which was much better than 2017’s 10 percent loss. It was, though, something of a stuttering end to 2018 and the dollar has had mixed fortunes in early 2019.
In December, after lifting US interest rates to 2.25-2.5 percent, the Fed lowered its expectations for future hikes due to so-called “cross currents” (China, Brexit, trade wars etc.). Skepticism among analysts over future Fed hikes has for some time been the main reason for dollar pessimism for 2019, but now, there is also the prospect of a US economic slowdown to contend with.
“A slowdown in the economy is likely to weigh on USD particularly in the second half of this year,” a CIBC researcher said in January.
Of the same opinion was an expert at ING, who argued that the dollar is soon to “embark on a gradual long-term bearish trend.”
January’s extended US government shutdown also has dollar-negative ramifications. Not only is the shutdown likely to hit first-quarter GDP growth, disagreements within Congress bode poorly for the future of potentially inflationary fiscal spending.
Read our Guide to the US dollar currency.
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