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US Dollar Weakens After Yellen Speech; Oil Prices Surge Ahead of US Oil Supply Data

Published November 22, 2017
  • The US dollar is down this morning after Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen commented that she was “very uncertain” if inflation would rebound over the next few years. Yellen reiterated that the Fed is closely monitoring inflation while still noting that the central bank is “reasonably close” to its monetary policy goals.
  • Investors will look for more details on Yellen’s relative dovishness in today’s release of the Federal Reserve’s meeting minutes from their previous interest rate decision meeting held earlier this month; interest rate futures indicate a near 100% chance of a rate hike to the 1.25%-1.50% range in December’s Fed meeting.
  • US Stock Futures point to subdued trade for US markets today as market participants wind down ahead of the US Thanksgiving holiday. US indices continue to rally as the Dow, S&P 500 and Nasdaq all finished at record closing highs yesterday.
  • Oil prices are higher this morning ahead of the weekly supply data release on US oil stockpiles from the US Energy Information Administration at 10:30 AM EST; prices for the commodity are near two and half year highs as investors speculate that this week’s data release will indicate greater demand for oil by showing a drop in US oil stockpile reserves.
  • Continued hopes for a production cut extension decision from the OPEC-led group later this month is also buoying the price of oil; investors will see if US oil production can counteract this growth when Baker Hughes releases its weekly rig count today at 1:00 PM EST (released earlier than usual due to the upcoming American holiday).