Dollar Up, Holds Gains Ahead of Central Bank Policy Decisions, U.S. Economic Data

Dollar Up, Holds Gains Ahead of Central Bank Policy Decisions, U.S. Economic Data

The U.S. Dollar Index that tracks the greenback against a basket of other currencies inched up 0.07% to 91.330 by 12:29 AM ET (4:29 AM GMT).

The USD/JPY pair was up 0.29% to 109.59.

The AUD/USD pair inched up 0.05% to 0.7720. Data released earlier in the day in Australia said that April’s Australian Industry Group manufacturing index was at 61.7, higher than March’s 59.9 reading. The NZD/USD pair was up 0.22% to 0.7176.

The USD/CNY pair was steady at 6.4735 and the GBP/USD pair inched up 0.05% to 1.3821.

Trading was thin in the Asian markets as the Chinese and Japanese markets are closed for a holiday.

The riskier Australian and New Zealand dollars rose through April but dropped on Friday after strong U.S. consumption figures, including personal spending, boosted the greenback. Further U.S. data, including the Institute of Supply Management (ISM) Manufacturing Purchasing Managers index and non-farm payrolls for April, are due later in the week.

However, some investors were concerned that strong data could prompt central banks to taper asset purchases.

“The risk is for a hotter number… but will good numbers lead to a broad risk-off vibe, as traders’ price in higher rate expectations, and the dollar rallies? I suspect we’re getting to a point where really good data could start to become bad for markets,” Pepperstone head of research Chris Weston told Reuters.

U.S. Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas President Robert Kaplan on Friday called for tapering conversations to begin directly against the Federal Reserve’s current dovish stance. Fed Chairman Jerome Powell is also due to speak later in the day, followed by other Fed policymakers later in the week.

Central banks in Australia, the U.K. and Norway will also hand down their policy decisions during the week.

Although the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) is expected to make no policy changes in its decision to be handed down on Tuesday, investors will look to a speech by deputy RBA governor Guy Debelle on Thursday for clues into the central bank’s bond purchases outlook.

Asset purchases will also be front and center when the Bank of England hands down its decision on Thursday. Norges Bank, which projected hiking rates in 2021, is widely expected to stick with its hawkish tone in its decision on the same day.

Dominic Nwodo

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