Trading on the Euro has been relatively calm this Thursday. The Euro exchange rate has fallen to 1.1217 against the US dollar, against which the British pound has fallen to 1.2934. Market participants are now awaiting the press conference with ECB head Mario Draghi and the results of the British parliamentary elections.
A snap general election is taking place in the UK today. If the Conservatives win, Theresa May will retain the post of Prime Minister and will continue negotiating Britain's exit from the EU. If not, we could see a new Prime Minister. Polls are open until 22:00 local time (00:00 EEST). Once polls have closed, the exit polls will be published and the votes counted.
The governing council of the ECB have decided not keep interest rates unchanged for now. According to a press release from the regulator, the base interest rate remains at a record low of 0%, the deposit rate has been maintained at -0.4% and the rate on the marginal lending facility at 0.25%.
Moreover, the bank decided to maintain its asset purchases at its current level of 60 billion EUR as part of their quantitative easing (QE) program. The governing council is prepared to increase the level of quantitative easing should the need arise.
The Euro exchange rate reacted to the ECB's decision with movements in both directions. First, the price went up to 1.1263 level followed by a drop to 1.1217 (-46 pips). Now, trader attention is has turned to Mario Draghi's press conference, the head of the ECB, which will take place a little bit later today (Thursday).
Markets are expecting to see increased volatility while the press conference is being held. Journalists will be asking Draghi direct questions about reversing the QE program, inflation, and growth prospects for the Eurozone's economy. After Draghi, traders will turn their attention towards former FBI director James Comey. On the EUR/USD pair, the scales look to be tipping in buyers' favour, but their success will depend on Draghi and Comey.
The Eurozone's GDP final index for Q1 came out at 0.6% QoQ and 1.9% YoY (forecast: 0.5% QoQ, 1.7% YoY, the revised figures were 0.5% QoQ and 1.7% YoY).
Germany's industrial production rose 0.8% MoM in April (forecast: 0.5% MoM, previous reading: -0.1% MoM).