By Peter Nurse
Investing.com – The dollar has drifted lower in early European trade Monday, but that’s off three-week highs as investors looked for safety amid renewed worries about a second wave of coronavirus infections.
At 3 AM ET (0700 GMT), the dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of six other currencies, was down 0.1% at 97.493. The index had earlier climbed to a daily high of 97.677, a level not seen since the start of this month, while USD/JPY was up 0.1% at 106.94.
“The main driver has been concerns about the spread of the coronavirus and arguably the speed of the global recovery, emphasizing the still strong FX versus risk correlation,” said analysts at Danske Bank, in a research note.
Sunday saw a record 183,020 cases globally, according to the World Health Organization, with the bulk in North and South America. The number of global cases is now almost 9 million, according to Johns Hopkins University data.
EUR/USD last traded up 0.1% at 1.1191 after dipping to a three-week low of 1.1168 in early trade. This followed the failure of the European Union leaders to agree on a structure for the planned 750 billion euros Covid-19 recovery fund.
“From the comments from the leaders, the disagreement does not seem to be about the size of the package, but rather about grants versus loans distribution,” said Danske Bank.
This is proving a tricky obstacle, with four members [Sweden, Denmark, Austria and the Netherlands] being particularly vocal in their opposition to the plan to pay out the majority of this stimulus in grants instead of loans.
The EU leaders are aiming to reach an agreement before the summer break, which may mean late July/early August, potentially at a physical meeting.
GBP/USD gained 0.2% to 1.2379, holding just above a three-week low, weighted as well by Brexit worries since there has been little progress in trade discussions with Europe.