The dollar weakened against its peers today following the release of discouraging US factory orders data compounding poor US economic figures out yesterday which diminished confidence in the outlook of the economy’s recovery. The US Census Bureau reported that factory orders dropped by 3.4% in December while experts had forecast a decrease of 2.2%. The dollar remained pressured by Monday’s figures which revealed that consumer spending dropped to a 4 year plus low declining 0.3%.
The euro strengthened against the dollar following news that Greece had highlighted its strategy for revising the conditions of its bailout with its creditors. Greek Finance Minister Varoufakis announced that creditors would take part in an exchange of outstanding debt for new growth-linked bonds in order to lessen Greece’s debt trouble.
The pound strengthened against the dollar following data released by Markit and the Chartered Institute of Purchasing & Supply which revealed that their UK construction purchasing managers’ index increased from 57.6 in December to 59.1 in January. Analysts had forecast a slight decline to 57 for January.
The Swiss franc strengthened against the dollar while weakening against the euro. The Swiss franc had weakened considerably across the board yesterday on the back of news unconfirmed by the Swiss National Bank that it had removed its exchange rate floor against the euro in order to target a rate of between 1.05 to 1.10 francs per euro.
The yen strengthened against the dollar overnight following a steep drop in the Nikkei 225 stock index as risk aversion increased safe haven demand for the yen. The pair still remains range bound as traders pinpoint a breakout.
The Australian and New Zealand dollars weakened against the dollar after the Reserve Bank of Australia shocked the market by reducing its key interest rate from 2.50% to 2.25% due to the Aussie dollar being overvalued. The Australian Bureau of Statistics reported that Australia’s trade deficit decreased from AUD 1.02 billion in November to AUD 0.44 billion in December. Building approvals declined by 3.3% in December while a decrease of 5.0% was forecast.
The Canadian dollar strengthened against the dollar following the release of solid data by Statistics Canada which revealed that raw materials price inflation dropped by 7.6% in December while experts had forecast an 8.8% decline. Recent poor US data also helped the loonie regain ground.
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