- Fed Chair Powell committed to buying more bonds if necessary.
- Soothing words of support allowed stocks to recover and the dollar to rise.
- Strongly urging Congress to act refocuses market perspective.
Markets want money– shares initially dropped when the Federal Reserve offered only guidance but no new bond-buying. However, a dose of honey can go in some ways. Jerome Powell, Chairman of the Federal Reserve, reaffirmed the bank's commitment to supporting the economy and also stated that the institution has the ability to buy more bonds.
The ball returns to Congress' court. With a week to go until Christmas, the place to get a gift from Santa is Capitol Hill. Powell said that that there is a "very strong case" for additional fiscal stimulus. Despite upgrading growth forecasts and saying that he expects strong economic performance in the first half of 2021, he continues urging elected officials to act.
Investors are encouraged that Republicans and Democrats reportedly put their contentious points aside and are settling on agreeing on the easier points – worth some $900 billion. They are probably also happy to hear that President-elect Joe Biden refers to this upcoming accord as a "down-payment" – ahead of additional support later on.
Sealing the deal in Congress would likely be needed to send trigger the next meaningful EUR/USD rally and a surge higher in the S&P 500 Index. For GBP/USD, it all revolves around Brexit.
Overall, Powell refrained from acting now but is ready to support the economy 0 and markets – in the upcoming challenging months as the world transitions from a harsh stage in the pandemic to herd immunity thanks to vaccines. However, the next short-term risk-on move in markets is not coming from him now.
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