Monday, September 19, 2011

Stabilizing financial markets through forex

Have you looked recently on the performance of the EURCHF and USDJPY crosses?

They are basically flat:

Chart: EURCHF vs USDJPY 10 days, 2011-09-19; Stooq.com

Both the Swiss and Japanese currency are starting to resemble the tightly controlled Chinese yuan (renminbi):

Chart: EURCHF, USDJPY and USDCNY, 3 months, 2011-09-19; Stooq.com

As suggested earlier, forex volatility of some crosses may disappear for some time.

Volatility still remains present in the emerging market crosses and... in gold, which has become a hard currency proxy of some kind over the recent years.

However, the latest increase in the activity of central banks, who provide virtually unlimited funds through currency swaps and asymmetric market operations, may lead to the further reduction in overall market volatility. There is not a central bank able to "print' gold though, so nobody can put a floor under the price of gold (see also "Gold - correction or trend change?").

Central banks can directly operate on the forex and - partially - on the fixed income markets. Equities and commodities (with the exception of precious metals) are officially off-limits. Nevertheless, since all the financial markets are interconnected, actions on some markets affect the others.

Currently I still have no clear picture of what may be the long term consequences of the above mentioned central banks activities. Most probably many financial markets - not only forex - will stabilize or start raising for reduced risk. Many correlations will disappear or reverse. Various investment strategies may stop working. But what then?

1 comment:

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