Energy, Facebook issues drive flight to dollar, US data, debt-ceiling headlines eyed

Markets have been shaken by soaring energy prices and Facebook’s massive downtime. The safe-haven dollar is on the rise and now awaits the ISM Services PMI. Uncertainty about the US debt ceiling and Chinese issues are also eyed. Shiba stands out among cryptocurrencies and oil remains of interest.

Risk-off: Oil prices joined the surge in commodity prices after OPEC+ members decided to stick to raising output by 400,000 barrels per day and not more. WTI Crude Oil has hit $78, the highest since 2014. Elevated natural gas costs and worries about inflation coming from other materials and shipping costs may risk the recovery and push borrowing costs higher.

Markets dropped in response to inflation fears and also the massive outage in Facebook, which also affected Instagram and Whatsapp. The drop in the ubiquitous services comes as the firm faces scrutiny about allegations that it prioritized profit over safety. As one of the largest tech firms, its issues weighed on broader sentiment.

Dollar up: After retreating on Monday, the greenback has been on the rise on Tuesday, pushing EUR/USD below 1.16 and GBP/USD under 1.36. The price of gold is also off the highs, with XAU/USD changing hands under $1,760.

AUD/USD is trading around 0.7250, down due to the greenback’s strength and after the Reserve Bank of Australia left its policy unchanged as expected. The RBA reiterated its stance that borrowing costs are unlikely to rise until 2024, but its outlook remains upbeat.

Debt-ceiling: US President Joe Biden warned that the US could default on its debt within two weeks if Republicans do not cooperate on raising or suspending the debt ceiling. Democrats are still struggling to find a compromise between leftist and centrist factions regarding two spending bills.

China: Evergrande, China’s second-largest property developer, continues struggling with its debt payments. Another construction company, Fantasia Holdings Group Co, also missed a dollar bond payment and added to the downbeat sentiment.

UK petrol stations are reportedly feeling some ease after drivers queued to fill up their cars in fear of a shortage. The British army continues assisting in delivering gasoline to stations. In another Brexit-related issue, the EU and the UK remain at odds over the Northern Irish protocol.

Looking ahead, the US Services Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) is set to show somewhat slower growth in September. This forward-looking gauge serves as a hint toward Friday’s Nonfarm Payrolls. However, the Prices Paid component is eyed amid growing concerns about the topic.

Cryptocurrencies: Shiba INU has been standing out with double-digit gains after Tesla’s founder Elon Musk tweeted a picture of his Shiba Inu dog. Bitcoin is trading at the upper end of the range around $49,000, Ethereum is holding up around $3,300 and Ada at around $2.21.

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