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  • EUR/USD has shrugged off President Biden’s public investment plan announcement and seems happy to consolidate in mid-1700s.
  • The US March ISM Manufacturing report and US labour market report will be the main drivers from here on out.

EUR/USD is currently consolidating within a new intra-day 1.1720-1.1760 range, just above Wednesday Asia Pacific session lows just above the 1.1700 level. FX market volumes are thin at the moment, with North American participants having left and most of the Asia Pacific flow yet to arrive.

Driving the day

Amid low volumes and the lack of market participants ahead of the start of the Asia session, FX markets are yet to show much by way of reaction to US President Joe Biden’s speech on his infrastructure spending plans, which to be fair went pretty much as expected. For reference; Biden announced a two-part investment plan, the American Jobs Plan and American Family Plan. The latter will be announced later in April. The former will involve, as expected, more than $2T in investment over the next eight years; $650B will be for roads and bridges, $300B will be for housing, $400B for clean energy credits and $400B for the elderly. Biden announced that the spending will be funded by an increase in the corporation tax to 28%, by focusing on increasing IRS tax compliance and with tax hikes on those making more than $400K per year.

Sticking with stateside drivers, a few data points were released on Wednesday worth noting; the latest monthly employment change estimate from ADP points to a solid NFP number this Friday and the Chicago PMI survey (also for the month of March) points to a strong ISM manufacturing PMI survey on Thursday. However, February Pending Homes Sales data was pretty bad, but housing data has generally been very strong as of late, so one poor print is not too much of a concern. USD data appeared not to have much impact on EUR/USD on the day, with the dollar instead remain subdued amid negative quarter-end impulses.

Turning to the euro side of the equation, the main news out of the Eurozone on Wednesday was French President Emmanual Macron’s lockdown announcement; the lockdown will cover the whole country and will last for at least one month, starting on Saturday. Domestic travel restrictions have been imposed and schools closed for three weeks. Macron also announced that from 16 April, all those aged above 60 will be able to get vaccinated, which is good news. The euro’s lack of reaction to the news out of France suggests that lockdowns and the poor near-term outlook for the block has now mostly been priced in.

Elsewhere, preliminary March Consumer Price Inflation data for the Eurozone, released during early European hours, saw the headline rate inflation pick up to 1.3% YoY from 0.9% in February as expected (this didn’t affect the euro at all). Meanwhile, comments from ECB President Lagarde have also been shrugged off, but for reference, she said; the economic situation is marked by uncertainty, the bank’s recent decisions have been guided by the rise in yields and the PEPP (the bank’s pandemic emergency QE programme) will be used with maximum flexibility. Meanwhile, Lagarde also said she does not think the German Court challenge will impact the EU recovery fund if the matter is resolved soon.

Looking ahead, there is very little on the economic calendar out of Europe for the rest of the week, meaning Thursday’s US ISM Manufacturing report for the month of March and Friday’s US March labour market report will be the main drivers from here on out.