US Dollar Drops, Gold Rises As CDC Confirms First Case Of Possible Community Spread

The United States dollar fell against the Japanese yen on Thursday as investors fear a possible coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak in the country.

What Happened

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention said it had identified a coronavirus patient with no travel history to affected areas or contact with other confirmed patients, giving rise to fears that the virus has already started to spread within communities in the U.S.

The public health institute had previously said that the spread of the coronavirus is a matter of "not if, but when." President Donald Trump late Wednesday assured the country that the risk of the coronavirus spreading in the U.S. "remains very low."

The number of confirmed cases worldwide has risen to 82,168 with 2,801 confirmed deaths, according to data from the Johns Hopkins University. As the spread slows down in China, South Korea, Italy, and the middle-eastern countries are worse affected.

The U.S. and South Korea canceled their joint military exercise scheduled to happen in March as the latter reported 334 new cases on Thursday, to bring its total cases to 1,595. South Korea is the worst affected country after China.

In Europe, Denmark and Norway confirmed their first cases of COVID-19. Austria, Switzerland, Georgia, Greece, and Croatia also confirmed their first cases earlier this week.

Germany health minister Jens Spahn said the authorities could no longer trace the source of the infections, and fears that the coronavirus spread could turn into an epidemic in the country, Reuters reported.

Price Action

The U.S. dollar traded 0.4% lower against the yen at 109.97. The dollar also fell 0.47% against the euro at 0.9145.

Spot gold traded 0.6% higher at $1,649.67. Gold April futures were up 0.51% at $1,651.55.

Futures too traded lower as markets closed lower earlier in the regular session.

Dow Jones futures were down 0.46% at 26957.56. Nasdaq 100, however, went up at the press time, trading at 8980.78, 0.17% higher.

S&P 500 futures dropped 0.38% lower at 3116.39.

Markets in Asia and the European Union tanked in Thursday's trade as well, with Chinese stocks bucking the trend.

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