Overnight the Fed left its policy rate unchanged but Powell foreshadowed a sustained battle to tame inflation.

He told reporters there was “quite a bit of room to raise interest rates without threatening the labour market” and said the Fed was of a mind to begin lifting rates in March.

The dollar leapt 0.7% against the yen in the wake of the Fed’s decision and Powell’s remarks, its steepest daily jump in more than two months as the prospect of imminent hikes spooked stock markets and drove bond yields higher. [MKTS/GLOB][US/]

The yen inched a fraction lower to 114.74 per dollar on Thursday. The euro was sold to a six-week low of $1.2301 and the Australian dollar fell about 0.4% to a seven-week trough of $0.7076. [AUD/]

“While communication from Fed members in the lead-up to this meeting meant that the pivot should not have been a surprise, risk appetite shrivelled as Powell’s press conference progressed and the extent of the Fed’s commitment to act in the face of significant inflation pressure became clear,” said ANZ analysts.

The New Zealand dollar headed for a sixth consecutive session of selling and touched an almost 15-month low of $0.6626, despite data showing inflation there running at a three-decade high.

Among other data in the spotlight, Chinese industrial profit growth slowed in December, while U.S. economic growth and jobless claims figures are due later in the day.

Sterling is testing support at $1.3454, as investors await a Bank of England meeting next week and have an eye on the turmoil enveloping Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who is under pressure after attending parties during lockdowns.

After a battering last week, cryptocurrencies have mostly held their ground in the wake of the Fed’s meeting, though bitcoin saw some pressure early in the Asia session and was last down nearly 2% to $36,100.


Currency bid prices at 0154 GMT

Description RIC Last U.S. Close Pct Change YTD Pct High Bid Low Bid

Previous Change



$1.1232 $1.1243 -0.10% -1.21% +1.1243 +1.1231


114.6000 114.6800 -0.06% -0.36% +114.7750 +114.6100


128.71 128.91 -0.16% -1.24% +129.0100 +128.6600


0.9242 0.9243 +0.01% +1.33% +0.9245 +0.9240


1.3452 1.3465 -0.10% -0.54% +1.3467 +1.3444


1.2696 1.2663 +0.27% +0.42% +1.2700 +1.2659


0.7082 0.7115 -0.46% -2.57% +0.7121 +0.7078


Dollar/Dollar 0.6627 0.6654 -0.38% -3.16% +0.6660 +0.6626

All spots

Tokyo spots

Europe spots


Tokyo Forex market info from BOJ

(Reporting by Tom Westbrook. Editing by Lincoln Feast.)