for-phone-onlyfor-tablet-portrait-upfor-tablet-landscape-upfor-desktop-upfor-wide-desktop-up

FOREX-U.S. dollar weakens for 5th day on vaccine optimism

    * Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine trial shows 95% effective
    * Dollar index edges down to more than one-week low
    * Bitcoin surges above $18,000, but last down on the day
    * Euro ticks up, investor ignore EU recovery fund hurdles
    * Sterling gains on Brexit developments
    * Graphic: World FX rates in 2020 tmsnrt.rs/2RBWI5E

 (Adds new comment, updates prices)
    By Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss
    NEW YORK, Nov 18 (Reuters) - The dollar slipped for a fifth straight session on Wednesday, sliding to
a more than one-week low, as positive vaccine news offset the surge in coronavirus cases and tighter
economic restrictions across the United States and Europe.
    The market showed a little more appetite for risk-taking, with gains in currencies that rise in times
of improving sentiment such as sterling, the New Zealand dollar, and Norwegian crown.
    Pfizer announced that the final results from the late-stage trial of its COVID-19 vaccine
showed it was 95% effective, giving relief to a pandemic-weary market. That followed news
that Moderna Inc released preliminary data for its vaccine, showing 94.5% effectiveness.

    That said, the number of reported global daily deaths from the coronavirus stood at 10,816 on Tuesday,
according to a Reuters tally, the highest single-day death count. The United States, the worst-affected
country worldwide, has reported about 11.38 million infections and 248,574 deaths since the pandemic
started.
    "A spike in COVID cases is generally good for the dollar and other safe-haven currencies like the yen
and Swiss franc, but the positive vaccine news roughly counters that," said Greg Anderson, global head of
foreign exchange strategy at BMO Capital Markets in New York.
    The dollar as a safe haven is expected to weaken overall as global economies improve once the vaccine
gets widely distributed.
    That said, TD Securities believes the dollar has further room to rally in the short term given that
the market is overestimating the "timing and scalability" of vaccine distribution.
    In the latest research note, TD Securities senior FX strategist Mazen Issa recommended taking a
defensive posture in the coming weeks, noting that "broad market optimism has overshot reality and that
the good news related to the vaccine race is already in the price." 
    In afternoon trading, the dollar index slipped 0.1% to 92.312, after dropping to 92.207, its
lowest since Nov. 9. 
    Bitcoin, sometimes regarded as a safe haven, or at least a hedge against inflation, rose to
more than $18,000 for the first time in nearly three years. It last stood around  $17,590, down 0.4%.
    The euro was little changed on the day at $1.1864. On Wednesday, Poland and Hungary blocked
the European Union's 1.8 trillion-euro ($2.14 trillion) financial package to revive an economy depressed
by the COVID-19 pandemic.
    Sterling, meanwhile, rose 0.2% versus the dollar to $1.3279 in the wake of a report from the
Sun newspaper that Prime Minister Boris Johnson was told by British negotiators to expect a Brussels trade
deal early next week, with "a possible landing zone" as soon as next Tuesday.
    The dollar though fell 0.3% against the yen to 103.865, with the Japanese currency recouping
much of the losses it suffered last week after Pfizer announced it had developed a working COVID-19
vaccine. 
    
    ========================================================
    Currency bid prices at 3:26PM (2026 GMT)
 Description      RIC         Last           U.S. Close  Pct Change     YTD Pct     High Bid    Low Bid
                                              Previous                   Change                 
                                              Session                                           
 Dollar index                 $92.3140       92.4330     -0.12%         +0.00%      +92.5160    +92.2070
 Euro/Dollar                  $1.1865        $1.1861     +0.03%         +5.83%      +1.1891     +1.1851
 Dollar/Yen                   103.8250       104.1900    -0.36%         -4.42%      +104.1900   +103.6550
 Euro/Yen                     123.19         123.57      -0.31%         +1.02%      +123.6300   +123.0300
 Dollar/Swiss                 0.9105         0.9116      -0.11%         -5.90%      +0.9122     +0.9093
 Sterling/Dollar              1.3278         1.3250      +0.22%         +0.12%      +1.3311     +1.3248
 Dollar/Canadian              1.3049         1.3107      -0.43%         +0.46%      +1.3117     +1.3035
 Aussie/Dollar                0.7320         0.7300      +0.29%         +4.34%      +0.7331     +0.7272
 Euro/Swiss                   1.0803         1.0811      -0.07%         -0.45%      +1.0824     +1.0791
 Euro/Sterling                0.8934         0.8953      -0.21%         +5.68%      +0.8959     +0.8916
 NZ                           0.6933         0.6894      +0.55%         +3.02%      +0.6945     +0.6877
 Dollar/Dollar                                                                                  
 Dollar/Norway                8.9835         9.0700      -0.94%         +2.43%      +9.0890     +8.9850
 Euro/Norway                  10.6619        10.7464     -0.79%         +8.38%      +10.7790    +10.6573
 Dollar/Sweden                8.5846         8.6131      -0.43%         -8.16%      +8.6359     +8.5803
 Euro/Sweden                  10.1855        10.2293     -0.43%         -2.71%      +10.2420    +10.1825
 
 (Reporting by Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss
Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)
  
for-phone-onlyfor-tablet-portrait-upfor-tablet-landscape-upfor-desktop-upfor-wide-desktop-up