News & Analysis

The dollar begins its way out of the doldrums helped by an electrifying performance

Andrew Saks, Tuesday, 27 April 2021

The electric car era is well and truly here.

Anyone who is a regular visitor or a resident of London, Paris, Geneva or Stockholm along with pretty much all metropolitan North American cities will likely have noticed the incredible increase in presence of near-silent cars which either have no internal combustion engine at all, or one that is switched off most of the time whilst the electric motor whirrs peacefully giving constant-motion motive power via direct drive to the wheels.

Almost every street in London is adorned with pencil-like obelisks from which Mennekes charging cables extend toward the charging port of all manner of vehicles from top of the range luxury SUVs to London taxis and delivery vans.

The mainstream manufacturers have been extremely willing to participate in the plug-in hybrid and fully electric car revolution, and some of them are absolute masters at it, combining over 100 years of automotive engineering prowess with the expertise and budget to develop electric power for their already finely honed top-end automobiles, however in 2014, along came a disruptor from outside the motor industry, and created enough of a buzz to spur the establishment into action.

At first the boardroom walls echoed with the sounds of derision. "Oh look, the computer man is building plastic cars with no engine" they quipped.

After a short time, however, it was not funny anymore. Eccentric inventor Elon Musk is now the richest man in the world, and his Tesla Model S, introduced in 2014 was widely regarded as a 'beta' format for the future of cars. A test bed for what is entirely practical as fast, silent, emission-free transport in a world increasingly encumbered by green agendas from Western governments.

Tesla may have been a victim of its own success in that the established car manufacturers with their huge R&D teams, armies of accountants and lawyers, flawless factories that have been finely honed over a century, and massive marketing budgets quickly rushed to respond by launching their own quite excellent electric cars, however Tesla reserves cult status as a disruptor, and in today's post-nerd world, disruptors are cool.

Today, the halo effect continues, and the FX markets are reflecting Tesla's continual success.

The US Dollar has risen a little today with EURUSD trading below 1.21 and GBPUSD under 1.39, coinciding with Tesla's earnings report yesterday which was higher than that estimated by analysts, coming in at 93 cents per share.

The company, rather typically of a disruptor, had another maverick-style, non-conformist ace up its sleeve, in that the firm revealed during its earnings announcement that it had made an extra $100 million via a Bitcoin investment which exceeded standard expenditure.

Tesla's CFO stated that there are "lots of reasons to be optimistic" about Bitcoin, which is currently trading at over $53,000 to the US Dollar.

Whether this is a precipice with lemmings waiitng to fall off or whether it is sustainable is absolute speculation.

Despite the US Dollar's rise today, it is important to note that outside of all of that Silicon Valley-style bluster, the US Dollar remains at relatively low levels, because it is important to keep sight of the matter that the US Dollar has been at multi-week lows over the past few days in the advent of the Federal Reserve's policy decision announcement this week, subdued by Treasury yields.

The dollar index, which tracks the U.S. currency against six peers, was little changed at 90.947 in mid-Asian session, after dipping to the lowest since March 3 overnight at 90.679. The dollar added 0.1% to 108.18 yen, another haven currency, continuing its rise from the seven-week low of 107.48 reached Friday.

Right, I'm off to charge my electric car....

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