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The dollar was down on Thursday morning in Asia, moving towards the middle of a range that it has stuck to for the past month. Investors now look to the U.S. Federal Reserve’s policy decision, due to be handed down next week, for further clues on when the central bank will begin asset tapering.
The U.S. Dollar Index that tracks the greenback against a basket of other currencies inched down 0.05% to 92.485 by 11:57 PM ET (3:57 AM GMT).
The USD/JPY pair inched down 0.05% to 109.31.
The AUD/USD pair edged down 0.14% to 0.7324. Australian jobs data released earlier in the day showed that the employment change contracted by 146,300, while the full employment change contracted by 68,000, in August. The unemployment rate was 4.5%.
The NZD/USD pair edged up 0.15% to 0.7114, with New Zealand’s GDP growing a better than expected 2.8% quarter-on-quarter and 17.4% year-on-year in the second quarter.
The USD/CNY pair inched up 0.04% to 6.4347 while the GBP/USD pair inched down 0.02% to 1.3834.
Gold was up on Thursday morning in Asia, with investors continuing their wait for clues on when the U.S. Federal Reserve will begin asset tapering.
Gold futures inched down 0.05% to $1,793.85 by 11:34 PM ET (3:34 AM GMT) after falling 0.6% on Wednesday, the biggest one-day decline in a week.
The Fed will hand down its latest policy decision next week, which could provide clues on the central bank’s timeline.
Across the Atlantic, European Central Bank Executive Board member Isabel Schnabel said on Wednesday that real interest rates are puzzlingly low globally and that investors may be overestimating the economic impact of COVID-19’s Delta variant.
Several countries in Asia Pacific released data, starting with Japan. Trade data released earlier in the day showed that exports grew 26.2% year-on-year and imports grew 44.7% year-on-year in August. The trade balance was at a deficit of JPY635.4 billion ($5.8 billion).
Australia released jobs data that showed the employment change contracted by 146,300, while the full employment change contracted by 68,000, in August. The unemployment rate was 4.5%.
European stock markets are expected to weaken Thursday, following Asia lower amid slowing growth and increasing regulatory concerns.
At 2:10 AM ET (0610 GMT), the DAX futures contract in Germany traded 0.1% lower, the FTSE 100 futures contract in the U.K. fell 0.3%, but CAC 40 futures in France climbed 0.3%.
European markets have received a weak handover from Asia Thursday, with the Hong Kong benchmark index, the Hang Seng, falling nearly 2%. Casino shares extended the previous day’s rout as the Chinese government sought to tighten its grip on Macau, the world’s biggest gambling hub.
Additionally, troubled Chinese real estate giant Evergrande stock slumped around 10% after its main unit applied to suspend trading of its onshore corporate bonds, raising fresh worries of default risks.
Economic data from China released Wednesday pointed to the world’s second largest economy suffering from slowing growth in August thanks to Covid-19 outbreaks and supply disruptions.
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