Markets torn between vaccine and virus news, ahead of ECB, US jobless claims

Markets are calm after a positive day, with yields and the dollar falling. Optimism about a developed-world vaccine-led recovery is countered by surges in covid cases in India and elsewhere. The ECB is set to leave its policy unchanged and US jobless claims are eyed as well.

Mixed mood: Coronavirus cases are dropping in the US as the world’s largest economy reached 40% of its population with at least one inoculation and optimism about Europe’s recovery is also eyed. On the other hand, India hit a record of over 300,000 infections in one day and Japan’s worsening situation also worries investors. S&P 500 futures are stable after Wednesday’s bounce.

The European Central Bank is set to leave its policy unchanged and take stock of the improving economic environment amid growing US demand and hopes for a significant rebound. Christine Lagarde, President of the ECB, will likely be asked about the bank’s bond-buying scheme and if it intends to taper it down at any point.

USD/CAD remains on low ground around 1.25 in the aftermath of the Bank of Canada’s decision to taper its purchases of government debt. The hawkish move, on the backdrop of America’s economic boom and rising housing prices, may precede a similar move by the Federal Reserve.

The US dollar is off the highs as US 10-year yields extend their drop below 1.55%. Gold has failed in its attempt to move above $1,800 and remains correlated with returns on US debt. US unemployment claims are set to show a rise from last week’s surprisingly low figure of 576,000. Existing Home Sales for March are also awaited.

Cryptocurrencies are mixed, with Bitcoin pressured under $55,000 and Ethereum changing hands near $2,500. XRP is edging higher.

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