© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: The employee of a currency exchange shop counts U.S. dollar banknotes in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico July 27, 2023. REUTERS/Jose Luis Gonzalez/File Photo
By Herbert Lash
NEW YORK (Reuters) -The dollar rose sharply on Thursday after U.S. consumer prices rose more than expected in September, lifted by an elevated cost of rent that raised the prospect of the Federal Reserve keeping interest rates high for some time.
The Labor Department’s report on Thursday showed the annual increase in consumer prices last month, excluding the volatile food and energy components, was the smallest in two years, but the surprise surge in rental costs rippled across markets.
While many shrugged off the move higher in rental costs, others concluded the Fed’s mission to lower inflation to it’s 2% target isn’t quite there.
“It just drives home the recent narrative that interest rates are likely to stay fairly high for a long period of time until the Fed can really break the back of inflation,” said Douglas Porter, chief economist at BMO Capital Markets in Oakville, Canada.
“Getting inflation back to 2% is not going to be easy.”
The consumer price index increased 0.4% last month, with a 0.6% jump in the cost of shelter accounting for more than half of the rise.
The , a measure of the U.S. currency against six others, jumped 0.85% to 106.550 in its biggest single-day gain since March 15. The dollar rose more than 1% against sterling, and the Australian and New Zealand dollars.
While a close call, the Fed is on course to hike rates one more time, most likely in December, said Bipan Rai, North America head of FX strategy at CIBC Capital Markets in Toronto.
The euro declined 0.85% to $1.0527, while the yen slid closer to breaching the 150 mark, seen as a level Japanese officials may intervene to halt the currency from weakening further. It was last down 0.43% at 149.81 per dollar.
Owners’ equivalent rent, a measure of the amount homeowners would pay to rent or would earn from renting their property, rose even though non-official sources show a decline in rental prices.
“Since the Fed makes its decisions based on the official numbers, not on what third party sources are showing, it’s a little bit worrisome,” said Thierry Wizman, Macquarie’s global FX and interest rates strategist in New York.
“Even though September was a blip, I don’t think that it negates the overall picture of the declining inflation. I don’t think that this is going to cause (the Fed) to hike,” Wizman said. “The only thing that the market is missing is that somehow it thinks that the Fed is going to drop high for long.”
The dollar’s recent weakness has been driven by declining Treasury yields as bond prices rallied on the Fed’s softer stance on future rate rises. Bond yields move opposite to their price. The yield on 10-year Treasuries rose 10.6 basis points (bps) to 4.7032%. The benchmark note hit its highest since 2007 last week at 4.887% but dropped sharply this week.
Also in the mix for currency investors on Thursday were sluggish British growth figures, which showed the economy partially recovered in August after a sharp drop in July. The pound initially did not significantly react but later fell 1.15% to $1.2174. The pound was the best performing G10 currency in the first half of this year, thanks to better-than-expected economic data and sticky inflation that drove expectations the Bank of England (BoE) would be increasing rates for longer than most peers. It then had its worst month in a year in September, as those factors reversed, before steadying this month. Thursday’s CPI release came after Wednesday’s mixed report on U.S. producer prices, and minutes from the Fed’s September meeting. Fed officials pointed to uncertainties around the economy, oil prices and financial markets as supporting “the case for proceeding carefully in determining the extent of additional policy firming that may be appropriate,” the minutes showed. The Swiss franc had been set to strengthen for the seventh successive session, the longest streak since July 2020. But the franc retreated, with the dollar up 0.72% at 0.9085.
China’s state banks seen supporting yuan as Moody’s cuts outlook – sources
© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: U.S. Dollar and Chinese Yuan banknotes are seen in this illustration taken January 30, 2023. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration/File Photo
SHANGHAI (Reuters) -China’s major state-owned banks were busy buying the yuan in currency markets on Tuesday to prevent it from weakening too much, two sources with knowledge of the matter said, with buying intensifying after rating agency Moody’s (NYSE:) cut China’s outlook to negative in the afternoon.
State banks were spotted swapping yuan for U.S. dollars in the onshore swap market and quickly selling those dollars in the spot market to support the yuan throughout the whole trading session, the sources said.
But the banks’ dollar selling became very forceful after the Moody’s statement, one source said.
China state banks have in the past year often sold dollars to slow the yuan’s decline against the U.S. dollar. Markets have often seen the moves as a sign of official attempts to relieve pressure on the currency, though banks could also be trading for their own accounts.
Moody’s on Tuesday cut its outlook on China’s government credit ratings to negative from stable, citing expectations of lower medium-term economic growth and risks from a deep correction in the country’s vast property sector.
With China’s economy sputtering and the U.S. dollar surging until recently, the yuan has had a volatile year, having weakened 6.14% to the dollar at one point before giving back much of the losses on recent views that U.S. interest rates have peaked.
The yuan strengthened 2.55% in November, its best month this year, but it is still down 3% year-to-date.
However, some analysts said the impact on the yuan from the Moody’s decision will not be sustainable.
“The issues plaguing the property sector are not new,” said Khoon Goh, head of Asia research at ANZ.
“The steps taken by the authorities recently should see a bottom soon. The upcoming U.S. data will be more important for the near-term direction of the yuan,” Goh said, referring to a spate of government measures to revive the real estate market.
Dollar finds foothold ahead of jobs opening, services PMI data
Investing.com – The U.S. dollar stabilized in early European trade Tuesday, near a one-week high, as traders scaled back dovish Federal Reserve bets ahead of key economic data releases.
At 04:30 ET (09:30 GMT), the Dollar Index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of six other currencies, traded largely unchanged at 103.559, after recording its weakest monthly performance in a year in November.
Greenback finds support ahead of key data
The dollar was on the backfoot for most of November as traders began pricing in bigger rate cuts by the Fed next year than by any other major central bank.
However, the greenback has found some support with traders scaling back those bets ahead of the release of a series of important data releases this week, starting later in the session with U.S. and , before the widely watched on Friday.
“We suspect markets may be positioning ahead of next week’s Fed meeting, when Chair Jerome Powell may insist on his pushback against rate cut bets,” said analysts at ING, in a note.
“Today, however, market moves will be heavily impacted by two important data releases: JOLTS job openings and the ISM services. The first probably holds the keys to a bigger market reaction, given the proximity to U.S. payrolls data and the fact that markets are anxiously waiting for signs of a decisive turn lower in the jobs market to jump on bearish dollar positions.”
Eurozone heading for recession
In Europe, edged lower to 1.0835, close to Monday’s three-week low, after the eurozone’s rose to 47.6, its best reading since July, from October’s near three-year low of 46.5, and above a 47.1 preliminary estimate.
While the downturn in the region’s business activity eased last month, it still suggested the bloc’s economy will contract again this quarter, pointing to a regional recession. Last quarter the contracted 0.1%, according to official data.
tumbled to 2.4% last month from above 10% a year earlier, putting it close to the ECB’s 2% inflation target.
The European Central Bank can take further interest rate hikes off the table given a “remarkable” fall in inflation and policymakers should not guide for rates to remain steady through mid-2024, ECB board member Isabel Schnabel, a known hawk, said Tuesday.
fell 0.1% to 1.2624, retreating further from its recent three-month top of 1.2733.
Aussie dollar slumps after RBA meeting
In Asia, fell 0.6% to 0.6581 after the held its benchmark interest rate steady at 4.35%, after hiking by 25 basis points in October.
Governor Michele Bullock said that the bank needed more economic cues before considering any more changes to monetary policy, but warned that inflation risks still persisted.
traded 0.1% lower to 147.07, some distance away from the three-decade low of 151.92 it touched in the middle of November, even as growth in the country’s services sector missed expectations in November.
traded largely unchanged at 7.1418, even as a showed the country’s services sector grew more than expected in November. But the yuan was presented with new downside risks from growing fears of another epidemic in the country, as local media reports showed a spike in respiratory illnesses across major Chinese cities.
MUFG teams up with JPYC to enhance yen-backed stablecoin transactions
Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (NYSE:), one of Japan’s premier financial institutions, has entered into a partnership with JPYC Inc. to integrate the yen-backed stablecoin into its digital asset platform, Progmat. This move is aimed at streamlining services such as cross-border payments and comes as part of the financial giant’s broader strategy to embrace digital currency technology.
The collaboration was announced today and marks a significant step in the adoption of cryptocurrency in mainstream financial operations. Progmat, which was launched in September, is MUFG’s latest venture into the digital asset space, developed with the support of key partners like SBI Holdings and Mizuho Trust and Banking.
The integration of JPYC’s yen-backed stablecoin onto the Progmat platform is set against the backdrop of Japan’s evolving regulatory landscape for digital assets. Under new regulations, JPYC is preparing to issue a funds transfer stablecoin through Progmat while also transitioning to a trust-type stablecoin without transaction limits. This transition is subject to JPYC obtaining the necessary license, for which it has already applied, envisioning MUFG as the custodian bank holding the stablecoin reserves.
MUFG is also looking to facilitate currency conversions for Japanese users by enabling efficient exchanges between yen-backed stablecoins and their USD equivalents. This initiative follows MUFG’s research conducted in November on XJPY and , which investigated potential enhancements to settlement processes within the digital asset market.
The strategic alliance between MUFG and JPYC reflects a growing trend among traditional financial institutions to integrate cryptocurrency solutions into their service offerings. By doing so, they aim to provide customers with more flexible and efficient payment options that align with the global shift towards digital finance.
This article was generated with the support of AI and reviewed by an editor. For more information see our T&C.
- Forex1 year ago
Forex Today: the dollar is gaining strength amid gloomy sentiment at the start of the Fed’s week
- Forex1 year ago
Unbiased review of Pocket Option broker
- Forex1 year ago
How is the Australian dollar doing today?
- World1 year ago
Why are modern video games an art form?
- Cryptocurrency1 year ago
What happened in the crypto market – current events today
- Forex1 year ago
Dollar to pound sterling exchange rate today: Pound plummeted to its lowest since 1985
- Stock Markets1 year ago
Morgan Stanley: bear market rally to continue
- Stock Markets11 months ago
Amazon layoffs news: company announces record layoffs