Forex Today: Tension mounts ahead of Powell, Euro fears QE, Bitcoin rallies

  • Major currencies are holding their breaths ahead Fed Chair Jerome Powell's testimony.
  • The euro is under pressure amid speculation of a new bond-buying scheme.
  • The pound is suffering from growing recession fears amid weak data.
  • Bitcoin is leading a rally in cryptocurrencies, nearing $13,000.

Here is what you need to know on Tuesday, July 9th:
- Currencies are at a standstill with the USD consolidating Friday's gains and ahead of the all-important testimony by Fed Chair Jerome Powell due on Wednesday. Powell will also speak today but will likely refrain from talking about monetary policy. Two other Fed officials will speak later in the day: James Bullard and Randal Quarles.
- Trade tensions between Japan and South Korea mount due to Japan's technology export limits. 
- AUD/USD has lost ground after NAB's business confidence measure has dropped from 7 to 2 in June. 
- The Turkish lira has stabilized after tumbling down on Monday due to the president's firing of the governor of the central bank.
- The euro remains on the back foot as the European Central Bank is considering restarting the Quantitative Easing program in addition to cutting interest rates.
- UK economy: The British Retail Consortium's retail sales measure dropped by 1.6%, worse than expected. Moreover, a Bloomberg survey has shown that economists foresee a contraction of the economy in the second quarter.
- Gold is trading below $1,400 despite reports that central banks are accumulating the precious metal.
- Bitcoin is leading a rally in cryptocurrencies, nearing $13,000. China's central bank will reportedly want Facebook's Libra under its oversight. 

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