The U.S. Dollar appreciated across the board after U.S. Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen gave her speech at the Jackson Hole central bank summit with a positive take on the economy. Yellen recapped the upgrades to monetary policy undergone through the crisis of 2008 and felt confident that based on the strength of employment, the outlook is positive for the economy building a case for a rate hike. Missing from the speech was the actual timing of the suggested rate hike.
The U.S. Federal Reserve and the Bank of Japan showed the two sides of central bank action this week. The Fed's Federal Open Market Committee ended with no change to the U.S. benchmark interest rate. The lone dissenter was once again Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City President Esther George.
The European Central Bank held interest rates and its quantitive easing on hold as expected on Thursday, July 21. The euro was weaker against major pairs after there was not clear signal on what the next step for the central bank is despite the anticipated negative effect of the Brexit vote on European growth by forecasters. Earlier in the week the German ZEW was a portent of things to come with a -6.8 confidence in the German economy for the next 6 months. For the full Eurozone the index was -14.7.