Dollar Steady Amid Ongoing Tensions Between the West and Russia and Other Top Forex News.
The U.S. dollar held ground against the other major currencies on Friday, as investors remain cautious amid ongoing tensions between the West and Russia. With the U.S. enacting a further round of sanctions against a number of Russians close to President Putin.
In Asia, the Japanese yen recovered some of yesterdays losses after news of further sanctions on Russian officials embroiled in the Ukraine crisis, sent investors scurrying for the safety of the Japanese yen.
USD/JPY ended the session up 0.17% at 102.23.
The dollar ended the session little changed against the euro, with EUR/USD closing up 0.12% at 1.3795.
The euro held steady throughout the session after official data showed the euro zone current account surplus widened to €25.3 billion in January, from €20.0 billion in December, whose figure was revised down from a previously estimated surplus of €21.3 billion. Analysts had expected the current account surplus to narrow to €18.4 billion in January.
Meanwhile, investors remain cautious after the European Union followed the U.S. in intensifying sanctions against Russian President Vladimir Putin’s inner circle to pressure his government to defuse the global standoff over Ukraine. The EU added on Friday 12 names to their list of Russians and Ukrainians punished with asset freezes and travel bans.
In the U.K. investors shrugged off data showing that U.K. public sector net borrowing came in less than expected in February, climbing by £7.5 billion, compared to expectations for an increase of £8.6 billion.
The pound was unmoved by the news, likely due to escalating tensions in the Crimea.
GBP/USD ended the session up 0.07% at 1.6494.
Elsewhere, the Australian dollar found support after the Australian Conference Board said its index of leading indicators rose 0.2% in January, after a 0.8% increase in December.
AUD/USD ended the session up 0.50% at 0.9086.
And the New Zealand dollar remained in positive territory against the mostly stronger greenback as investors gained confidence from New Zealand’s strong domestic economy after fourth-quarter growth met expectations.
NZD/USD ended the session up 0.10% at 0.8542.
Finally the Canadian dollar was boosted after a slightly hotter reading of Canada’s consumer price index in February which came closer to the Bank of Canada’s medium-term forecast, reversing a recent slide in the Loonie.
USD/CAD ended the session down 0.25% at 1.1214.
More coverage of today’s session.
- FT: Federal Reserve dissenter Kocherlakota attacks new guidance. – The U.S. Federal Reserve damaged its credibility and created uncertainty that will weaken the U.S. economic recovery, said a senior official as he explained his dissent from this week’s monetary policy decision.
- WSJ: Wall St eyes record as rate fears fade. – Global markets have stabilised after the “Yellen wobble” with China’s bourse bouncing on hopes for more government action to support assets.
More Top Stories:
Dean Popplewell: USD/JPY – U.S. dollar firm above 102. – The US dollar is steady on Friday, as the USD/JPY remains above the 102 line. In Japan, the markets are closed on Friday for a holiday, but BOJ Governor will deliver remarks at the London School of Economics on Saturday. It’s a quiet day in the US, with no data releases. FOMC member Richard Fisher will discuss forward guidance at the London School of Economics.
Marc Chandler: Canadian surprise, but enough to trigger short squeeze? – The Canadian dollar began the day at multi-year lows, following the double whammy of diverging central bank views. The market heard the Bank of Canada governor sound dovish, while the Fed’s “dot plot” and Yellen’s expansion on what a “considerable period” means, took a toll on the Canadian dollar.
Bloomberg: Gold futures rise to snap longest slump in four months. – Gold futures rose, snapping the longest slump in four months, as the dispute between Russia and the West over Ukraine escalated, increasing demand for a haven.
WSJ: Canadian dollar rallies after CPI, retail sales data. – The Canadian dollar rallied early Friday after a slightly hotter reading of Canada’s consumer price index in February that came closer to the Bank of Canada’s medium-term forecast reversed a recent slide in the currency.
WSJ: Australian dollar firmer as risk appetite recovers. – The Australian dollar rose Friday in Asia, closing out a solid week for the currency marked by rising global risk appetite and a sense that the domestic economy is strengthening.
WSJ: New Zealand dollar remains firm despite greenback’s positive momentum. – New Zealand–The New Zealand dollar remained firm against the U.S. dollar late Friday, despite positive data out of the U.S. overnight that helped buoy the greenback.