Yesterday the situation in Iraq continued to have an impact on the currency markets, namely the afternoon calls from Baghdad for the US to target jihadist militants with air strikes. As a result we saw a general risk-off in the market, with traders selling off stocks and looking to buy into safe-haven assets such as the Japanese yen – which gained steadily throughout the day. The news also raised concerns about oil supply over coming months, given that Iraq is a major producer. This pushed up the price of Brent crude, which was good news for the Canadian dollar as oil is a significant export commodity for them. The Canadian currency also took a further modest boost from strong wholesale sales figures released in the afternoon.
Overnight we had growth figures out of New Zealand, which came in slightly under expectations thereby weakening the New Zealand dollar. Looking forward to today, with a libor rate announcement due along with the release of monetary policy meeting minutes, all eyes will be on the Swiss franc,
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