Trading desks expected a quiet holiday. That’s not what they got

Cecile Gutscher and Emily Graffeo

It was supposed to be a quiet trading day in the U.S. that could easily be handled through post-Thanksgiving drowsiness. Instead, news spread Thursday night of an ominous new coronavirus variant, and traders braced for widespread losses on Black Friday. 

In a rush of adrenaline that recalled the dark days of March 2020, Craig Erlam, a senior market analyst at currency trading and data firm Oanda, had to jettison his plans.

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