RBNZ hiked interest rates but NZD falls
The Reserve Bank of New Zealand announced its fifth consecutive 50 bps rate hike. This move was strongly anticipated, and the New Zealand dollar stayed close to $0.57 during the day. To lower the high inflation, the RBNZ has raised the cash rate to a seven-year high of 3.5% and hinted another tightening.
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Kenya supports oil trade in its currency
Kenya has signed an agreement with Saudi Arabia and the UAE to purchase oil using Kenyan shillings rather than US dollars. This move promotes the use of Kenya’s national currency and enhances its economic autonomy.
The Japanese Yen has been strengthening against all other currencies on Friday. EUR/JPY fell the hardest, by 1.82%. Other currency pairs, like NZD/JPY and GBP/JPY, are also down 1.5% so far.
EUR/USD rose above 1.0900 after the Fed raised interest rates, the highest since early February. Another Fed’s rate hike of 25bps was delivered, but the US dollar weakened all around the place.
Russia to internationalize Chinese Yuan
Putin advocated for the internationalization of the Chinese yuan, saying that around two-thirds of trade between Russia and China is conducted in yuan and ruble. The president said his country supports the use of the yuan in trade between Russia and countries in Asia, Africa, and Latin America.
The euro strengthened against all fiat currencies, supporting the ongoing trends. EUR/AUD jumped 1.5%, while EUR/JPY and EUR/GBP are up 1.2%.
The Japanese yen continues to appreciate against all currency pairs. NZD/JPY is down 1.33%, and CAD/JPY along with USD/JPY fell 1%.
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EU stock indices near March highs 📈
Thursday saw an almost 1% increase in European stock indices on hopes that central banks will soon halt their tightening cycle. Global risk sentiment improved as worries about the recent banking turmoil subsided. The STOXX 600 jumped to 455 while DAX 40 surged to 15,500.
Ripple jumps 12% amid market rally 🚀
Ripple (XRP) jumped an additional 12% to $0.58, as investors hope the lawsuit between the SEC and Ripple is coming to an end. The cryptocurrency is already up 65% in the last 2 weeks.
Saudi Aramco is working with China to build a $12.2 billion oil refinery. The refinery will be in northeast China, and it is expected to be fully operational in 2026. About 300,000 barrels of oil a day will be housed at the refinery.
Alibaba soars 13% after announcement
The announcement of Alibaba’s plan to divide itself into six distinct businesses boosted the stock by 13%. This reorganization may result in many IPOs down the road. The segments would be cloud, e-commerce, global e-commerce, digital mapping, logistics, and a media arm.
5 banks investigated over $100b fraud
Five large banks in France were reportedly targeted by investigators as part of a €100 billion fraud probe. French and German governments were involved because of a possible money laundering allegation. The banks under investigation are HSBC, Societe Generale, BNP Paribas, Exane, and Natixis.
Charles Schwab is facing risks due to unrealized losses of over $29 billion on its balance sheet from 2022. As a result, Schwab shares have lost over a quarter of their value since March 8, with some analysts expecting earnings to suffer. The company’s CEO, Walt Bettinger, said the company is healthy and prepared to withstand the turmoil.