Forex - Dollar slips as uncertainty grows of Fed stimulus tapering


Shutterstock photo - The dollar traded lower against most major currencies on Tuesday amid growing uncertainty as to when the Federal Reserve will decide to begin tapering the pace of its USD85 billion in monthly asset purchases.

In U.S. trading on Tuesday, EUR/USD was up 0.19% at 1.3764.

A surprisingly strong November jobs report bolstered the dollar in recent sessions by fanning talk the Federal Reserve may announce plans to taper the pace of its USD85 billion in monthly bond purchases at its Dec. 17-18 monetary policy meeting.

Friday data revealed that the U.S. economy added 203,000 jobs in November, beating expectations for a 180,000 increase.

Also on Friday, the preliminary Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan consumer sentiment index increased to 82.5 in December from 75.1 the previous month, far surpassing expectations for a 76.0 reading.

By Monday, renewed uncertainty as to whether or not the U.S. central bank will wait until early 2014 after reviewing more data before deciding on tapering softened the greenback.

The euro, meanwhile, continued to see support due to a surprise European Central Bank decision to hold off on implementing fresh monetary stimulus measures at its December meeting, including introducing negative interest rates, after surprising investors with a rate cut in November.

In a speech on Tuesday, ECB President Mario Draghi urged governments to complete a banking union, saying it was crucial at both a national and European level.

The greenback was down against the pound, with GBP/USD up 0.13% at 1.6450.

The pound enjoyed support after Bank of England Governor Mark Carney said Monday that the U.K. economy had regained considerable strength in recent months.

Elsewhere, data released earlier Tuesday revealed that U.K. industrial output shot up in October, which fueled expectations that the BoE may tighten monetary policy ahead of other central banks.

The Office for National Statistics said industrial output increased by 0.4% in October, in line with forecasts and up 3.2% from a year earlier, the largest on-year gain since January 2011.

The ONS said manufacturing production also rose 0.4% in October and was 2.7% higher on a year-over-year basis, the fastest annual growth since May 2011. Economists had forecast a 0.4% monthly increase and 2.9% annual gain.

In a separate report, the ONS said the U.K. trade deficit narrowed to GBP9.73 billion in October from an upwardly revised deficit of GBP10.10 billion in September. Economists had expected the deficit to shrink to GBP9.35 billion.

The deficit on goods trade with the European Union rose to a record of almost GBP6.5 billion, from GBP6.2 billion in September.

The dollar was down against the yen, with USD/JPY down 0.53% at 102.72, and down against the Swiss franc, with USD/CHF down 0.39% at 0.8869.

The dollar was down against its cousins in Canada, Australia and New Zealand, with USD/CAD down 0.16% at 1.0610, AUD/USD up 0.48% at 0.9154 and NZD/USD trading up 0.28% at 0.8305.

The dollar index, which tracks the performance of the greenback versus a basket of six other major currencies, was down 0.26% at 79.96. offers an extensive set of professional tools for the financial markets.
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This article appears in: Investing Forex and Currencies
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