Open: London Session | Forex, Metals, Oil, Agriculture February 15, 2021



Dollar index The dollar index ended last week with a loss because of the downward pressure that it faced early on. Also, the dollar index looks weak, indicating that the dollar can remain under pressure today. “But ongoing aggressive U.S. reflationary fiscal and monetary policy settings will leave DXY on a sustained medium-term bear trend,” the note said, referring to the dollar index. BL Research BureauThe rupee (INR) settled 17 paise higher last week as it ended at 72.75 versus 72.92 against the dollar (USD).
The rupee strengthened by 14 paise to 72.61 against the US dollar in opening trade on Monday on the back of positive macroeconomic data and upbeat local equities. Meanwhile, the dollar index, which gauges the greenback’s strength against a basket of six currencies, fell 0.16 per cent to 90.33. The dollar rose 0.2% to 105.09 yen, recovering from some of the previous week’s 0.4% loss. At the interbank forex market, the local unit opened at 72.61 against the US dollar, registering a rise of 14 paise over its previous close.
“The rebound in the dollar … was initiated by relative U.S. economic outperformance, or expectations thereof,” said Shinichiro Kadota, senior currency strategist at Barclays Capital in Tokyo. As long as the inflows continue, the rupee can remain steady against the dollar.


Federal Bank’s gold loan portfolio registered a y-o-y growth of 67 per cent and crossed ₹14,000 crore in the third quarter of FY2021, per its third quarter analyst presentation. Bank of Baroda’s (BoB) agriculture gold loan portfolio was up 29 per cent year-on-year (yoy) to ₹21,116 crore as at December-end 2020 (₹16,325 crore as at December-end 2019). Gold loans accounted for 40 per cent of the private sector bank’s total advances against 30 per cent in the year-ago quarter.
Risk-averse market The gold loan portfolio of Thrissur (Kerala) headquartered CSB Bank jumped about 60 per cent yoy to ₹5,644 crore as at December-end 2020 (₹3,523 crore). “When we look at the agriculture side, nearly 40 per cent of the growth that we see in agriculture has come from gold loans. “…And we do hope that going ahead, 40-50 per cent of agricultural growth will come from gold loans,” Sanjiv Chadha, MD & CEO, BoB, told analysts last month. Gold loans are 20-21 per cent of our total agriculture book.
Banks aggressively expanded their loan against pledge of gold ornaments and jewellery (jewel loans) portfolio in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. State Bank of India’s (SBI) personal gold loan book jumped four times in six months (up to December-end 2020) to stand at ₹17,492 crore. We will increase the growth of the other products so that as a proportion (of total advances), gold loan will go down.


U.S. crude oil gained $1.2 to $60.7.On Friday, the S&P 500 and Nasdaq set record closing highs. The board of ONGC has approved formation of a new wholly-owned subsidiary to focus on the gas and LNG business value chain. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures gained 86 cents, or 1.5%, to $60.33 a barrel. WTI may be pulled back by profit-taking as it reached a key $60 level, he added.U.S. We can use JKM or Brent, or a combination of both.

United States

China, as of July 2020, accounted for 16 per cent of the global import market share and became the second-largest importer behind the US. The US accounted for 28 per cent of the global import market share. The U.K. vaccine drive blazes ahead, Trump eludes conviction and Bitcoin tests another milestone. For all that, Mario Draghi s appointment as prime minister puts Rome back among the grown-ups in the EU, our columnist Ferdinando Giugliano writes. Last week, the US markets closed at record high levels.


At their virtual meeting today, finance chiefs will discuss these challenges, especially in light of the latest EU economic forecasts, which predicted a slower recovery.