Concern about the emergence of a new Covid variant

With markets slowing down due to Thanksgiving in the US, news of the rapid diffusion of a new variant (B.1.1.529) in South Africa and neighbouring countries has spread like wildfire and has already had notable consequences: a sharp decline in Asian equity markets and a fall in bond yields, with the US 10-year down to 1.54%. Curiously, the dollar does not seem to be benefiting, but it would be curious if this were not the case in a context of renewed risk aversion: the EUR/USD exchange rate remains slightly above 1.12 for the moment.

The UK has already placed 6 southern African countries on a red travel list and the EU may quickly do the same. The major concern in Asia is the presence of this new variant in Hong Kong where several cases have been identified and the uncertainty about the effectiveness of existing vaccines to deal with a possible new wave. 

Otherwise, there is little news on a strictly economic level. German import prices accelerated to +21.7% yoy in October. Such figures no longer seem to surprise anyone.

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