International News And Current Affairs Drive Foreign Exchange Movements

February 26, 2012 by Leo D. Endo  
Filed under Finance

Foreign exchange took on new meaning in the 1970s when American abandoned the gold standard so that currencies began to fluctuate in value against each other. A lucrative, worldwide market developed as people began to use online facilities to trade currencies.

There are those who trade foreign exchange as a way of conducting international trade, and there are others who trade as speculators, aiming to profit from the constant state of flux. The size, and therefore the liquidity, ensure constant movement. The directions of those movements are determined by many factors.

Prices tend to revolve around pivot points but these points and the rate of change vary as news floods in from north, east, west and south. Various types of news influence the movements which may react violently or mildly. Trading strategies and decisions will often hinge upon the news that floods in from all corners of the world.

News of interest rate changes emanates from central bankers and their communication with markets. Even before an announcement rumour and speculation will move markets but it is when an actual announcement is made that news becomes hot. An interest rate rise in a country will tend to drive the price of a currency up against it partners. Conversely a drop in interest rates will cause the currency to fall.

Sharp price jumps may be precipitated by news items but trends are established by the ebb and flow of news over longer time spans. The profligacy of some governments which elect to borrow money in order to prop up social programmes and so run their countries into huge debt may take years to play out and the effect on a currency will be gradual.

Geo-political events such as the ‘Arab Spring’ or earthquakes also have marked effects on currency price movements. Sometimes these are not always as expected, as for example when the price of the Yen rose after earth quakes struck Japan. This illustrates how market dynamics are not always as straightforward as they might seem.

Foreign exchange exists primarily to facilitate trade between countries. Although speculators play a growing role in the market they are really secondary to the primary role of trade facilitation. For example, the weak Chinese currency makes it possible for that currency to trade with other countries advantageously. Somehow, fair play seems to indicate that free floating countries should be accepted globally but the communist authorities in China do not yet have to follow the rules of western capitalists, and have exploited the situation of free floating currencies to their advantage in recent decades. Trading currencies is stimulating because it involves keeping abreast of current news and affairs in many ways.

There may seem to be inconsistencies with the various currency trading news that you often listen to. No wonder, there is unlimited number of forex reviews supporting different kinds of opinions.


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