Investing.com - The Aussie rebounded in Asia Thursday after a slew of data from across the region that confirmed much of the slowdown in China, but also provided some room to hope for a rebound in manufacturing fortunes.
AUD/USD traded at 0.7042, up 0.31%, while USD/JPY changed hands at 119.94, up 0.05%.
Today, China starts a week-long holiday to mark the country's National Day, but surveys on manufacturing and services were released.
The official CFLP manufacturing PMI improved slightly to 49.8 in September, and beat an expectation of 49.6, as it inched toward expansion territory above 50 thanks to strong gains in new orders and production.
The Caixin manufacturing PMI for September came in as expected at 47.2 and above the flash manufacturing PMI reading of 47.0, the lowest since March 2009.
The Caixin Services index came in at 50.5, compared to 51.5 in August.
The Bank of Japan's quarterly Tankan survey showed the large manufacturing index in the latest quarter at +12, from +15 in June and a +13 expected.
The figures show that a further Chinese slowdown and unstable stock markets are making many manufacturers more cautious.
Backed by record profits, companies have high capital investment plans but they are putting some of them on hold until prospects improve, likely leading the BoJ to maintain the pace of its asset purchases at its two-day policy meeting on Oct. 6-7 in the absence of a major external shock that could threaten the path to stable 2% inflation.
But at its Oct. 30 meeting, the BoJ board is likely to lower its median GDP and CPI forecasts for fiscal 2015 as exports, spending and capex remain weak.
In Australia, the AI Group manufacturing index rose 0.4 point to 52.1, the third straight monthly gain.
The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback's strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, was up 0.02% at 96.44.
Overnight, the dollar remained broadly higher against the other major currencies on Wednesday, after the release of a strong U.S. non-farm private employment report and as investors noted a speech by Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen.
Payroll processing firm ADP said U.S. non-farm private employment rose by 200,000 this month, above expectations for an increase of 194,000.
The economy created 186,000 jobs in August, whose figure was downwardly revised from a previously reported increase of 190,000.
Separately, market research group Kingsbury International said its Chicago purchasing managers' index tumbled by 5.7 points to 48.7 this month from a reading of 54.4 in August. Analysts had expected the index to fall 1.4 points to 53.0 in September.
Yellen on Wednesday pointed to the "significant improvement" the economy has made in recent years as she spoke Wednesday about the challenges facing the nation's community banks.
Yellen avoided further comments on the economy or on monetary policy less than a week after she said the Fed had moved far enough toward achieving its employment and inflation goals that an initial hike in the federal funds rate is likely "sometime later this year."
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