Doves are meant to symbolise peace, but the Australian dollar is getting caught in a tug of war between two of them.
In financial jargon, a dove is a central banker who prefers interest rates to stay low.
Record low interest rates in Australia should be helping Reserve Bank governor Glenn Stevens guide the stubbornly high Australian dollar lower to help the local economy.
However his aim is being frustrated by interest rates in the US that are even lower, with Federal Reserve boss Janet Yellen signalling they will remain low for a “considerable time”.
The Aussie fell to a two-week low of 93.22 US cents on Tuesday after minutes of the RBA’s June board meeting showed it wants to keep the cash rate at a record low of 2.5 per cent “for some time yet”, and included a downbeat assessment on Australia’s economic growth prospects.
But the dollar bounced back up through 94 US cents early Thursday morning after Dr Yellen wound up the Fed’s two-day policy meeting saying she would keep the federal funds rate steady despite a recent spike in inflation.
“There were some expectations that they would hint that they were concerned about inflation, but they didn’t, and they reiterated they are maintaining their dovish stance,” Easy Forex currency dealer Tony Darvall said.
Mr Darvall said it was unclear if the Aussie dollar will rise to 94.60 US cents, its highest level this year, or fall towards 92 US cents if commodity prices remain under pressure.
“You’d think that the RBA at the next meeting would continue with the dovish talk,” he said.
“The June minutes were crafted to try and stop the Aussie from rallying and if we get above 95 US cents it will probably be more explicit about the concern.”
BK Asset Management managing director Kathy Lien said investors were disappointed by Dr Yellen’s policy announcement.
“When pressed for a definition of `considerable time’ she refused to provide any details, saying only that there is no formula for what considerable time means,” Ms Lien said.
“In other words, unlike other central banks that have recently expressed their desire to become more active, the Fed remains comfortable with their current course and has no desire to alter the market’s expectations.”