Markets quiet down on Black Friday

Here’s what you need to know on Friday, November 25:

Trading activity in the financial markets remains subdued amid thin Black Friday volumes. After the Thanksgiving holiday, bond and stock markets will close early and the economic calendar will not offer any high-impact macroeconomic data releases. Pre-weekend profit-taking may increase volatility in the second half of the day and may cause erratic movements in major currency pairs. Meanwhile, US stock index futures are trending higher in the early European morning, indicating somewhat calmer market sentiment.

During Asian trading hours, China reported 32,695 cases of coronavirus, setting a daily record of infections for the second straight day. Chinese officials ordered mass testing and decided to tighten restrictions in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou. However, the Shanghai Composite Index holds on to moderate daily gains and the Hang Seng Index is down just 0.3% towards the end of the week.

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In energy-related news, Saudi and Iraqi energy ministers issued a statement early Friday, saying they will introduce additional measures to ensure stability in the oil market. After falling nearly 5% on Wednesday, crude oil prices started to pick up in the second half of the week and a barrel of West Texas Intermediate (WTI) was last seen gaining 0.5% on the day at $78.30.

EUR/USD they failed to make a decisive move in either direction on Thursday and closed the day flat. The pair continues to fluctuate in a narrow range at around 1.0400 early Friday.

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GBP/USD touched its highest level in three months at 1.2155 on Thursday but lost its bullish momentum. At press time, the pair was moving sideways near 1.2100. However, GBP/USD is on track to end the third week in positive territory.

USD/JPY volatility in a narrow range below 139.00 early Friday. The data from Japan showed that the annual Consumer Price Index (CPI) in Tokyo was climbing to 3.8% from 3.5% in October. This reading came in higher than market expectations of 3.6% but failed to trigger a significant market reaction.

Statistics New Zealand announced earlier in the day that Retail Sales increased 0.3% on a quarterly basis in the third quarter, compared to analysts’ estimate for a contraction of 3.4%. Despite the data being better than the forecast, NZD/USD struggling to gather bullish momentum and was last seen trading at around 0.6250.

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Gold the price registered small daily gains and closed above $1,750 on Thursday. XAU/USD advanced above $1,760 in the Asian session but retreated to $1,755 in the European morning.

After a two-day rally, Bitcoin apartment closed on Thursday but lost its traction on Friday. BTC/USD was last seen losing more than 1% on the day at $16,400. Ethereum down nearly 2% on the day, trading below $1,200.

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