Green­back strug­gles in wake of weak US data

The China Post - - MARKETS -

The dollar faced sell­ing pres­sure Thurs­day as a batch of weak U.S. data raised the pos­si­bil­ity that the Fed­eral Re­serve will push back an in­ter­est rate hike be­yond mid-year.

In Tokyo, the green­back briefly slipped be­low the 119 yen level be­fore re­cov­er­ing to 119.33 yen in af­ter­noon trade, against 119.14 yen in New York. It was above 120 yen ear­lier this week.

The euro lost early gains to trade at US$1.0678 from US$1.0684, while it rose to 127.49 yen from 127.29 yen in US trade.

U.S. industrial pro­duc­tion fell 0.6 per­cent in March, ac­cord­ing to the Fed, twice the decline pro­jected by an- alysts. Also, the New York Fed said its Em­pire State in­dex on man­u­fac­tur­ing ac­tiv­ity plunged into neg­a­tive ter­ri­tory in April for the first time since De­cem­ber.

The data came on the heels of a dis­ap­point­ing U.S. re­tail sales re­port that had dented the dollar on Tues­day.

The U.S. unit has fallen back in the past few days as the soft fig­ures nar­row the chances the Fed will hike in­ter­est rates soon. Ex­pec­ta­tions ear­lier in the year had been for a rise as early as June as the world’s top econ­omy showed signs of strength.

How­ever, there was some good news in Fed’s Beige Book re­port on the state of the econ­omy, which said it con­tin- ues to grow and the labour mar­ket is im­prov­ing.

The dollar weak­ened against other Asia-Pa­cific cur­ren­cies.

It slipped to SG$ 1.3557 from SG$1.3638 on Wed­nes­day, to 1,088.15 South Korean won from 1,097.60 won, to 32.42 Thai baht from 32.46 baht, and to 44.42 Philip­pine pe­sos from 44.57 pe­sos.

The dollar also weak­ened to 12,857.50 In­done­sian ru­piah from 12,969.90 ru­piah and to 62.40 In­dian ru­pees from 62.42 ru­pees.

The Aus­tralian dollar rose to 77.38 U.S. cents from 75.93 U.S. cents, while the Chi­nese yuan eased to 19.26 yen from 19.27 yen.

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