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  • AUD/USD keeps recovery moves from 0.7740 despite recent pause in the corrective pullback.
  • Risks consolidate recent gains amid mixed catalysts concerning virus, china and central bankers.
  • Biden-backed optimism stays on the table even as incoming Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen showed readiness to fight currency manipulation.
  • Aussie Preliminary Retail Sales for December will be the key, US PMIs can entertain markets afterward.

AUD/USD consolidates the recent losses from 0.7783 while staying firm near 0.7763 during the initial Asian session on Friday. In doing so, the quote eyes the fourth consecutive positive day while respecting upbeat sentiment from the US. However, challenges due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) and the Sino-American tussle, coupled with the ECB results and US data, managed to test the optimists.

Biden, Lagarde and Yellen keep investors busy…

Having initially pinched for the fiscal stimulus, US President Joe Biden turned to the covid conditions and conveyed worries while also growling on a reporter asking about the vaccine rollout during his first full day in the office. The Democratic Party member kept his promise of environmental safety with the revocation of the Keystone XL pipeline.

Elsewhere, ECB President Christine Lagarde managed to sound optimistic for the current quarter despite the virus woes amid growing vaccinations, Brexit and Democratic victory in the Georgian Senate. That said, the ECB matched wide market expectations of keeping their monetary policy unchanged and dropped called of the yield curve control.

Recently, ex-Fed Chair Janet Yellen, about to return as next Treasury Secretary, showed readiness to fight against currency manipulation and signaled to keep the pressure on China. Yellen has been a firm supporter of measured policies and dislikes Beijing off-late.

Talking about data, the Aussie employment report flashed an upbeat report for December but the US data for activities, jobless and housing came in mixed.

It should also be noted that the global virus worries continue to escalate despite recently easing infections. The reason could be traced from the surge in the death toll and variants that spread faster.

Against this backdrop, Wall Street benchmarks step back from the initial gains to mark mixed closing at the end of Thursday’s trading. Further, the US 10-year Treasury yields rise 1.7 basis points (bps) to 1.107% by press time.

Looking forward, Australia’s preliminary reading for December’s Retail Sales, prior 7.1% MoM, will be the key. Bulls look for an uptick to keep the north-run. Ahead of the release, the Australia and New Zealand Banking Group (ANZ) said, “We think Australian retail turnover fell by -1.5% in December, which is in line with the market.”

Technical analysis

21-day SMA near 0.7705, followed by lows marked since January 05 around 0.7658-65, seems to restrict the pair’s short-term downside. As a result, a descending resistance line from January 06, at 0.7800 now, lures AUD/USD bulls.