- economic policy, disseminated by government agencies and central banks,
- economic conditions, generally revealed through economic reports, and other economic indicators.
• Economic policy comprises government fiscal policy (budget/spending practices) and monetary policy (the means by which a government’s central bank influences the supply and “cost” of money, which is reflected by the level of interest rates).
• Government budget deficits or surpluses: The market usually reacts negatively to widening government budget deficits, and positively to narrowing budget deficits. The impact is reflected in the value of a country’s currency.
• Balance of trade levels and trends: The trade flow between countries illustrates the demand for goods and services, which in turn indicates demand for a country’s currency to conduct trade. Surpluses and deficits in trade of goods and services reflect the competitiveness of a nation’s economy. For example, trade deficits may have a negative impact on a nation’s currency. Inflation levels and trends: Typically a currency will lose value if there is a high level of inflation in the country or if inflation levels are perceived to be rising. This is because inflation erodes purchasing power, thus demand, for that particular currency. However, a currency may sometimes strengthen when inflation rises because of expectations that the central bank will raise short-term interest rates to combat rising inflation.
• Economic growth and health: Reports such as GDP, employment levels, retail sales, capacity utilization and others, detail the levels of a country’s economic growth and health. Generally, the more healthy and robust a country’s economy, the better its currency will
perform, and the more demand for it there will be.
• Productivity of an economy: Increasing productivity in an economy should positively influence the value of its currency. Its effects are more prominent if the increase is in the traded sector.