Fed fuels stocks, pushes dollar down, jobless claims, Powell’s speech eyed

The market mood remains positive after the Fed’s minutes pointed to ongoing support and ahead of Chair Powell’s speech. Safety concerns about AstraZeneca’s vaccines are weighing on the euro and the pound. Cryptocurrencies have dropped from their highs. US jobless claims are eyed.

The FOMC Meeting Minutes echoed the bank’s cautious approach to its policy despite acknowledging America’s quick recovery. Tapering bond buys is unlikely to come soon, music to investors’ ears. The S&P 500 extended its gains in response. Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell is set to speak later in the day.

Taxes: Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen laid out a detailed program to raise corporate taxes to fund the administration’s infrastructure spending plans. Republicans remain opposed to any hike. President Joe Biden is set to double America’s commitment to lowering carbon emissions, setting it at 50% for 2030.

Vaccines: Regulators in the UK and the EU have concluded that there is a link between AstraZeneca’s jabs and rare cases of blood clots. The UK recommended refraining from using the firm’s inoculations in the under 30s, while the bloc has yet to decided on a uniform response. The development may delay the recovery.

EUR/USD is off the 1.19 level amid these AZ concerns and awaits the European Central Bank’s meeting minutes, which will likely echo the ECB’s commitment to keeping long-term interest rates low. Phillip Lane, the bank’s chief economists, said that favorable financing conditions must be maintained.

US jobless claims are set to show applications falling back below 700,000 after topping that level last week. Nonfarm Payrolls and the JOLTs job opening figures pointed to a robust labor market.

Cryptocurrencies: Bitcoin is trading below $57,000 while Ethereum is struggling just above $2,000. Other digital assets are also below their highs.

WTI Crude Oil is around $60 and Gold is hovering around $1,740, both little changed.

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